Terrell Davis

Class of 2017



Pro Bowls




Super Bowl XXXII


“The more you put into football, you train, you prepare, the harder you play, then the better the results are going to be and that is true in life…you can’t think you’re going to be great at anything without putting work into it.”

Enshrinement Speech

Terrell Davis was selected in the sixth round, 196th player overall, of the 1995 NFL Draft by the Denver Broncos. The little-known back made a big splash when earned a starting role at tailback as a rookie. He strung together four spectacular seasons before a devastating knee injury, that limited him to just 17 games over his final three seasons, prematurely ended his pro career.

Davis, despite missing the final two games of his rookie campaign with a hamstring tear, eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark and also added a career-high 49 receptions for 367 yards in 1995. Davis improved his rushing total in each of the next three seasons. In his second year, he was named the Offensive Player of the Year when he ran for 1,538 yards and 13 TDs. Davis rushed for 1,750 yards and a league-high 15 TDs in 1997; and in 1998 became just the fourth runner in NFL history to rush for 2,000 yards in a season. He gained 2,008 yards and again led the NFL with 21 rushing touchdowns to spark the Broncos to a 14-2 regular season record en route to Denver’s second straight Super Bowl title.

Davis shined in the Broncos biggest games as evidenced by him stringing together a NFL playoff record seven straight 100-yard performances spanning the 1997 and ’98 postseasons capped by Denver winning back-to-back Super Bowls. He opened the 1997 playoffs with a 184-yard effort against the Jacksonville Jaguars in the AFC Wild Card Game followed by 101 yards versus the Kansas City Chiefs in the divisional playoff and 139 yards rushing yards in the win over the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Championship Game. He then earned MVP honors in Super Bowl XXXII after rushing for 157 yards and three TDs in the Broncos’ 31-24 victory over the Green Bay Packers. Davis also scored an incredible 8 rushing touchdowns in that ’97 playoff run.

In the 1998 playoffs, Davis rushed for a franchise postseason-record 199 yards against the Miami Dolphins in the divisional playoff, 167 yards versus the New York Jets in the championship and capped the season with 102 yards in the Broncos’ Super Bowl XXXIII victory over the Atlanta Falcons.

A three-time All-Pro selection, Davis rushed for 7,607 yards and 60 TDs in just 78 career games. He added an additional 1,280 yards on 169 career catches and four TD receptions. Davis was elected to three Pro Bowls and named to the NFL’s All-Decade Team of the 1990s.

Year Team G Att Yds Avg TD Rec Yds Avg TD
1995 Denver 14 237 1,117 4.7 7 49 367 7.5 1
1996 Denver 16 345 1,538 4.5 13 36 310 8.6 2
1997 Denver 15 369 1,750 4.7 15 42 287 6.8 0
1998 Denver 16 392 2,008 5.1 21 25 217 8.7 2
1999 Denver 4 67 211 3.1 2 3 26 8.7 0
2000 Denver 5 78 282 3.6 2 2 4 2 0
2001 Denver 8 167 701 4.2 0 12 69 5.8 0
Career Total 78 1,655 7,607 4.6 60 169 1,280 7.6 5
Additional Career Statistics: Two-Point Conversions: 3

1997 AFCDenver Broncos 24, Pittsburgh Steelers 21
Davis started the game at running back.  He carried the ball 26 times for 139 yards and one touchdown.  He also had one reception for two yards and fumbled once.

1998 AFCDenver Broncos 23, New York Jets 10
Davis started the game at running back.  He rushed 32 times for 167 yards and one touchdown.  He also caught one pass for 12 yards and recovered a fumble.

Super Bowls

Super Bowl XXXIIDenver Broncos 31, Green Bay Packers 24
Davis started the game at running back.  He had 30 carries for 157 yards and a Super Bowl record three touchdowns, the last one being the go ahead score with 1:45 remaining in the 4th quarter.  He also recorded two receptions for eight yards and fumbled once. He was named the MVP of the game.

Super Bowl XXXIIIDenver Broncos 34, Atlanta Falcons 19
Davis started the game at running back.  He carried the ball 25 times for 102 yards and had two catches for 50 yards.

All-League Teams

All-Pro: 1996 (AP, PFWA, SN)  •  1997 (AP, PFWA, SN)   •  1998 (AP, PFWA, SN)

All-AFC: 1996 (UPI, PW)  •  1997 (PW)   •  1998 (PW)

All-AFC Second Team: 1995 (UPI)

Pro Bowls

(3) – 1997, 1998, 1999*  

* Did not play

In the NFL Record Book

(at time of his retirement following 2001 season)

• [Tied for 1st] Most Two-Point Conversions, Season – 3 (1997)
• [Tied for 1st] Most Two-Point Conversions, Game – 2 (vs. Atlanta, Sept. 28, 1997)
• [3rd] Most Yards Gained, Season – 2,008 (1998)
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Attempts, Game – 42 (vs. Buffalo, Oct. 26, 1997 [OT])
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Games, 200 or More Yards Rushing, Career – 3
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Games, 200 or More Yards Rushing, Season – 2 (1997)
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Games, 100 or More Yards Rushing, Season – 11 (1998)
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Touchdowns, Season – 21 (1998)

Super Bowl Records

• [1st] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Game – 3 (Super Bowl XXXII, vs. Green Bay)
• [Tied for 1st] Most Points, Game – 18 (Super Bowl XXXII, vs. Green Bay)
• [Tied for 1st] Most Touchdowns, Game – 3 (Super Bowl XXXII, vs. Green Bay)
• [3rd] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Career – 3

Postseason Records

• [1st] Most Consecutive Games, 100 or More Yards Rushing – 7 (1997-98)
• [1st] Highest Rushing Average, Career – 5.59
• [Tied for 1st] Most Games, 100 or More Yards Rushing, Career – 7
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Touchdowns, Game – 3 (Super Bowl XXXII, vs. Green Bay)
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Game – 3 (Super Bowl XXXII, vs. Green Bay)
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Consecutive Games Rushing for Touchdowns – 7 (1996-98)
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Consecutive Games Scoring Touchdowns – 7 (1996-98)
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Career – 12

Team Records

Broncos records held by Davis
(Records through the 2001 season, Davis’ final season with Denver)

• [1st] Most Total Yards From Scrimmage, Career – 8,887
• [1st] Most Total Yards From Scrimmage, Season – 2,225 (1998)
• [1st] Most Combined Yardage, Season – 2,225 (1998)
• [1st] Most Rushing Attempts, Career – 1,655
• [1st] Most Rushing Attempts, Season – 392 (1998)
• [1st] Most Rushing Attempts, Game – 42 (at Buffalo [OT], Oct. 26, 1997)
• [1st] Most Rushing Yards, Career – 7,607
• [1st] Most Rushing Yards, Season – 2,008 (1998)
• [1st] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Career – 60
• [1st] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Season – 21 (1998)
• [1st] Most Consecutive Games Scoring a Rushing Touchdown – 8 (1998)
• [1st] Most Touchdowns, Career – 65
• [1st] Most Touchdowns, Season – 23 (1998)
• [1st] Most Consecutive Games Scoring, Non-Kicker – 8 (1998)
• [1st] Most Points Scored, Season – 138 (1998)
• [2nd] Most Total Offensive Plays, Career – 1,824
• [2nd] Most Total Yards From Scrimmage, Season – 2,037 (1997)
• [2nd] Most Total Yards From Scrimmage, Game – 236 (at Buffalo, Oct. 26, 1997)
• [2nd] Most Total Yards From Scrimmage, Rookie Season – 1,484 (1995)
• [2nd] Most Rushing Attempts, Season – 369 (1997)
• [2nd] Most Rushing Yards, Season – 1,750 (1997)
• [2nd] Most Rushing Yards, Game – 215 (vs. Cincinnati, Sept. 21, 1997)
• [2nd] Best Rushing Average, Career – 4.60
• [2nd] Best Rushing Average, Season – 5.12 (1998)
• [2nd] Best Rushing Average, Rookie Season – 4.71 (1995)
• [2nd] Most Consecutive Games Scoring a Rushing Touchdown – 6 (1997-98)
• [2nd] Longest Non-Scoring Run – 70 (at Seattle, Oct. 11, 1998)
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Touchdowns, Rookie, Game – 3 (vs. Washington, Sept. 17, 1995)
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Season – 15 (1997)
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Touchdowns, Game – 3 (vs. Kansas City, Dec. 6 1998; vs. Jacksonville, Oct. 25, 1998; vs. Dallas, Sept. 13, 1998; vs. Oakland, Nov. 24, 1997)
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Touchdowns, Season – 15 (1996, 1997)
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Consecutive Games Scoring, Non-Kicker – 6 (1997, 1998)
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Rookie Season – 7 (1995)
• [3rd] Most Total Yards From Scrimmage, Season – 1,848 (1996)
• [3rd] Most Total Yards From Scrimmage, Game – 228 (vs. Cincinnati, Sept. 21, 1997)
• [3rd] Most Combined Yardage, Career – 8,887
• [3rd] Most Combined Yardage, Season – 2,037 (1997)
• [3rd] Most Combined Yardage, Rookie Season – 1,484 (1995)
• [3rd] Most Rushing Attempts, Season – 345 (1996)
• [3rd] Most Rushing Yards, Season – 1,538 (1996)
• [3rd] Most Rushing Yards, Game – 208 (at Seattle, Oct. 11, 1998)
• [3rd] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Season – 13 (1996)
• [3rd] Longest Rushing Touchdown, Rookie – 60 (at Houston, Nov. 26, 1995)
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Consecutive Games Scoring a Rushing Touchdown – 5 (1997)
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Rushing Attempts, Game – 34 (at Kansas City, Nov. 16, 1997)

Postseason Records

• [1st] Most Rushes, Career – 204
• [1st] Most Rushes, Game – 32 (vs. New York Jets, Jan. 17, 1999)
• [1st] Most Rushing Yards, Career – 1,140
• [1st] Most Rushing Yards, Game – 199 (vs. Miami, Jan. 9, 1999)
• [1st] Best Average Gain Per Rush, Game – 9.5 (vs. Miami, Jan. 9, 1999)
• [1st] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Career – 12
• [1st] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Game – 3 (vs. Green Bay, Jan. 25, 1998)
• [1st] Longest Run From Scrimmage – 62 (vs. Miami, Jan. 9, 1999)
• [1st] Most Touchdowns, Career – 12
• [1st] Most Touchdowns, Game – 3 (vs. Green Bay, Jan. 25, 1998)
• [1st] Most Points Scored, Career – 74
• [1st] Most Points Scored, Game – 18 (vs. Green Bay, Jan. 25, 1998)
• [2nd] Most Total Offensive Plays, Career – 223
• [2nd] Most Yards Total Offense, Career – 1,140
• [2nd] Most Rushes, Game – 31 (vs. Jacksonville, Dec. 27, 1997)
• [2nd] Most Rushing Yards, Game – 184 (vs. Jacksonville, Dec. 27, 1997)
• [2nd] Best Average Gain Per Rush, Career – 5.6
• [2nd] Longest Run From Scrimmage – 59 (vs. Jacksonville, Dec. 27, 1997)
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Game – 2 (vs. Miami, Jan. 9, 1999; at Kansas City,
Jan. 4, 1998; vs. Jacksonville, Dec. 27, 1997)
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Touchdowns Scored, Game – 2 (vs. Miami, Jan. 9, 1999; at Kansas City,
Jan. 4, 1998; vs. Jacksonville, Dec. 27, 1997)
• [3rd] Most Rushes, Game – 30 (vs. Green Bay, Jan. 25, 1998)
• [3rd] Most Rushing Yards, Game – 167 (vs. New York Jets, Jan. 17, 1999)
• [3rd] Best Average Gain Per Rush, Game – 6.5 (vs. Jacksonville, Jan. 4, 1997)
• [3rd] Longest Run From Scrimmage – 47 (vs. Jacksonville, Jan. 4, 1997)
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Points Scored, Game – 12 (vs. Miami, Jan. 9, 1999; at Kansas City, Jan. 4, 1998; vs. Jacksonville, Dec. 27, 1997)

League/Team Statistical Titles

NFL Statistical Championships
Rushing Leader: 1998
Touchdown Leader: 1998

AFC Statistical Championships
Rushing Leader: 1996, 1997, 1998
Touchdown Leader: 1998

Team Statistical Championships
Rushing Leader: 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2001
Touchdown Leader: 1996, 1997, 1998
Scoring Leader: 1998

Awards and Honors

• 1995 All-Rookie Team (PW)
• 1996 Offensive Player of the Year (AP)
• 1996 AFC Offensive Player of the Year (UPI)
• 1998 Most Valuable Player (AP, FW, SN, NEA, FD)
• 1998 Offensive Player of the Year (AP)
• 1990s All-Decade Team
• Super Bowl XXXII MVP

Year Team W L T Divison Finish
1995 Denver Broncos 8 8 0 (4th)
1996 Denver Broncos 13 3 0 (1st)
1997 Denver Broncos 12 4 0 (2nd)
1998 Denver Broncos 14 2 0 (1st)
1999 Denver Broncos 6 10 0 (5th)
2000 Denver Broncos 11 5 0 (2nd)
2001 Denver Broncos 8 8 0 (3rd)

(Division Finish in Parentheses)
Qualified for Postseason in Bold

Full Name: Terrell Davis

Birthdate: October 28, 1972

Birthplace: San Diego, California

High School: Abraham Lincoln (San Diego, CA)

Pro Career: 7 seasons, 78 games

Drafted: 6th round (196th player overall) in 1995 by Denver Broncos

Uniform Number: 30

Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium

August 5, 2017

Thank you, thank you.


Well, Joe Horrigan said that it's never rained on Enshrinement Saturday. It's raining today. I want to first congratulate my 2017 classmates. Congratulations, guys. Neil, I think back to 1994 when I was still in college and hadn't even been drafted yet. You and I sat in that New York diner for hours just talking about life, family, and everything in between.

And getting ready for today, I reflected back on what you said to me as we were leaving that diner. You said, T.D., I want you to promise me one thing: When you make it to the Hall of Fame, you allow me to be your presenter.

Well, Neil, I thought you were crazy at the time, but here we are.

(Cheers and applause.)

Thank you, Neil, for believing in me and being such a dear friend and great mentor. You know, it's amazing and surreal to be standing here on this stage. When I first learned that I'd been elected to the Hall, I was asked how I might feel wearing this gold jacket and standing next to my bust. But I guess I'd be excited, but I really didn't know. But now I can say the overwhelming feeling running through my body today is gratitude.

(Cheers and applause.)

Thank you. I am grateful to the Selection Committee. I am grateful to be joining this elite fraternity with all these men. I am grateful to my friends and family and grateful to this wonderful game of football.

I grew up in southeast San Diego, the youngest of six boys, all of us about one year apart. And being the youngest was tough. Always fighting to prove myself in everything, including football. But there was one special person I was determined to prove myself to, and that was my dad.

My dad was tough on my brothers but tougher on me because I was the baby of the family. Yes, I was a crybaby. My dad didn't like the way my mother coddled me. But still, even though I knew he loved me, I always felt like he looked at me a little differently than he did my older brothers. And once I started playing Pop Warner football, I immediately fell in love with the football and earned the nickname "Boss Hog" because the way I ran. I just tried to run people over.

I love the physicality of the game, but I had also convinced myself that playing football provided me a way to gain my dad's approval, and by proving I was tough. And that's what drove me. I loved the game and gaining my dad's approval.

But it's inevitable in life with success comes setbacks. And in these moments, our character and our will are tested. And at nine years old, I received my first test. I began suffering from migraine headaches.

Now, just imagine a nine-year-old having to deal with vomiting, temporary blindness, and painful headaches just to play football. But there again, like seeking my dad's approval, something was pushing me forward to play. And that's what I did.

At 12 came yet another test, one that brought the greatest pain that I would ever experience, and that was the passing of my father. When he died, a part of me died. I went into a tailspin. I quit playing football. I was failing school. I was clearly a child in crisis. My daily ritual was hanging out with friends and getting into trouble.

But this all came to a screeching halt late one night when I was 14. I found myself literally staring down the barrel of a shotgun, and thank God someone talked the guy out of pulling the trigger. When I got home, I laid in my bed, I closed my eyes, and I vividly relived every moment over and over again. I spoke out loud to God, and I promised that I would never find myself in that situation again. I knew that I had to change my life. God had offered me a wakeup call. I couldn't simply say "wrong number" and hang up; I had to answer that call.

(Cheers and applause.)

That night I determined that I would walk away from the irresponsible life I'd been living forever. I transferred to Lincoln High School. I worked to get better grades. I joined the football team. Lincoln provided me the fresh start that I needed.

I want to thank my late coach, Vic Player, for being a true model, true role model. I want to thank all my coaches at Lincoln and teachers and all my teammates at Lincoln High, thank you for being here today.

At Lincoln, I play nose guard and fullback. So, when it came time to think about college, the best offer came from Cal State Long Beach. I saw it as a great opportunity for two reasons. One, my older brother Reggie was already there. And, two, the legendary NFL head coach George Allen was going to coach there.

George Allen ran our program like he did as an NFL head coach, but, sadly, he passed away at the end of my redshirt season. Coach Allen, I know you're listening. It was an honor to play for you.

(Cheers and applause.)

The next season Hall of Famer Willie Brown took over. But one year later our football program was cancelled. So once again, any aspirations of playing pro football seem to die. Another setback, another test. My short time at Long Beach State was special. I forged some great relationships that continue today my roommate, Bryan Duplessis, and close friends Troy Easter and Malcolm Thomas and Andre Devizan, just to name a few.

(Cheers and applause.)

To Hall of Famer Willie Brown, coaches Harvey Hyde and Mike Davis, and the rest of my Long Beach State coaches and teammates, thank you for helping me get here today.

The cancellation of Long Beach program made the national news. And as a result, a recruiter from the University of Georgia, Bob Pittard, called and asked one of our coaches if we have any players who can play in the SEC. He answered: Yes, we have one player; that's Terrell Davis.

Now I was off to the University of Georgia. How about them Dawgs! Now, keep in mind, up to this point, I lost a parent, battled through migraines, and found myself staring down the barrel of a shotgun, and overnight my college football program was gone. But here I am playing for a program with the prestige and tradition of UGA. God is good.

During my senior year, after suffering a torn hamstring, I hit another personal low point. However, this moment also served as a time of real introspection. While watching a game from the stands instead of on the field where I wanted to be, I questioned if I was ever going to play football again.

I asked myself: Did I give the game all I had? Did I play hard enough, study hard enough? And the answer was a resounding no. That reality forced me to decide what kind of player I'd become and what type of man I was committed to being. Another test.

I returned with four games left in the season, and when I did, I worked harder than ever. I didn't hold back. I did everything I could to be my very best. I walked off that field after the final game, and I can say with pride: I finally did whatever it took. I gave it my all and have no regrets.

I love being a Georgia Bulldog and playing between the hedges. My head coach was Ray Goff. Thank you, Ray, for being the coach I needed and for being here today. I'm happy to call you a friend. To my running back coaches, Willie McClendon and David Kelly, thank you for being here and thank you for being there when I needed you.

To my second family in Georgia, Preston Hughes and his mother, Carolyn, thank you for looking out for a kid from California. When I was homesick, you made me feel right at home.

And thank you to the rest of my coaches and teammates. And to Bulldog fans, I want to say it one more time: Gooooooooo Dawgs! Sic 'em!

(Cheers and applause.)

So today it's August the 5th, 2017. Recently a friend pointed out that August the 5th, 1995, was the first day of my NFL career. It was a Broncos preseason game versus the 49ers in Tokyo, Japan. I had one of my worst practices just a few days prior to the game. I thought I had blown my chances of making the team, so I decided to quit. Can you imagine that?

I called the front desk at the hotel and arranged for a flight home. But because I didn't speak Japanese, we couldn't communicate. So I couldn't leave. But by halftime the vets were out of the game and were allowed to eat. Thinking I was not going to play, I started eating, too. And midway through the third quarter, special teams coach wanted me to go in. I was pumped. I said, This is it. This was my chance. I have got to make a play.

Now despite having a belly full of hotdogs, I ran out on kickoff coverage and made a huge hit on the returner.

(Cheers and applause.)

And that was my first NFL play. Now, 22 years later, to the day, I am standing here with these legendary Hall of Famers wearing this beautiful gold jacket.

(Cheers and applause.)

It's so surreal. I was blessed to have been drafted by the Broncos in the sixth round, and my time in Denver was awesome. We had a lot of success. Our 46 wins over a three-year span and our back to back championships were phenomenal.

(Cheers and applause.)

But the success of the Broncos organization begins with the owners, Pat and Annabel Bowlen. Their philosophy is to treat each player on the team as though they were a member of their family. When I tore my ACL, Pat was the first to give me a call in the recovery room.

Pat and Annabel, you have been extraordinary owners, dear friends, and your generosity is second to none.

(Cheers and applause.)

Now, Mr. B is at home right now fighting a courageous battle against Alzheimer's. A few weeks from now the Hall of Fame Selection Committee will be voting on a contributor category. Let's make sure that this champion is enshrined in 2018.

(Cheers and applause.)

To my head coach Mike Shanahan, thank you for believing in me and giving me a chance to have this career. Your leadership was phenomenal.

To my other coaches, Gary Kubiak, Bobby Turner, and Alex Gibbs, thank you for challenging me to be my best every single day.

My prompter went out, by the way. We seem to be having some technical difficulties today.


Thank you.

To my quarterback John Elway where you at, John? Back on, brother I want to thank you for being my quarterback and giving me the opportunity to earn your trust. It was an absolute pleasure to be your teammate. Thank you, brother.

To my running backs, the No Limit Soldiers, it was an honor to go to battle with you guys every single game, especially my fullback Howard Griffith. G, I say thank you for your unselfishness and your sacrifice. You put your body on the line every single play, and I thank you for that, brother.

To my offensive line, you guys are simply amazing. Thank you for making my job so easy. And thank you to the rest of my teammates and coaching staff. We played as a team; we won as a team. Today is for us. I salute every single one of you.

(Cheers and applause.)

I want to thank Steve Antonopulos and the Broncos medical staff. I spent more time with you than I wanted to, but you guys took care of me. So thank you for that. I want to thank Doug West, Jim Saccomano, and the entire Broncos organization, thank you very much.

And to the city of Denver and Bronco fans around the world 

(Cheers and applause.)

I salute you. I salute you, brother.

And to my NFL Network (audio interruption) Frank White. Show you're riding. You've been instrumental in my life, starting from the first day you coached me in Pop Warner. Thank you for your love, your trust, your guidance, and your unwavering support. I can't tell you how much I appreciate you, and I love you, big fella. Show your ride.

(Cheers and applause.)

To my brothers, Joe, James, Reggie, Bobby, and Terry, a lot of who I am came from you guys. You taught me so much. Thank you for always being there and always looking out for me. I knew you guys were always there to rescue me. Even though we don't say it often, today I'm saying: I love you.

(Cheers and applause.)

To my younger brother Cale and my sister Jackie, I hope my influence on you was as positive for you as it was for me. I hope you're proud to call me your big brother.

Here you go. To my beautiful wife, Tamiko, I want to share with the world what you already know: When you first walked into my foundation meeting in San Diego 19 years ago, you stole my heart. I know you remember on our first date I said I was going to marry you. Though I didn't yet really know what love was, I did know saying that to you was God speaking through me.

Now 19 years and three children later, I've come to recognize you are my soul mate. You have taught me everything about love. So, thank you for being such a wonderful wife and mother.

It's a joy to help raise our three beautiful children Jackson, Myles, and Dylan. It's been a blast watching Jackson, my oldest son, it's been a blast watching you grow, buddy. For the first word to your first touchdown, you made me proud. I love you, man.

To my middle child, Myles, I love the way you just tear up everything. You remind me of me when I was your age. But keep doing what you're doing, Myles. That's what makes you unique. I love you, Tubby.

And to my little princess, Dylan. The first time you said "DaDa," I was in tears. I cherish every single moment with you.

(Cheers and applause.)

Daddy loves you so much, sweetie.

I dedicate this honor of being enshrined to the two most important influences in my life, my mother, Kateree, and my late father, Joe Davis.

And here's why. Mom, you are my hero. I am so honored that you are my mother. Raising six sons, taking us all to practices, all while working graveyard shifts and split shifts as an LVN. Not once did I ever hear you say no, and not once did I ever hear you complain. You have a huge heart. If somebody needs help, you always do something about it. Which is why you adopted my little brother and sister, Cale and Jackie.

(Cheers and applause.)

I don't know how you did it, Mom. You clothed us, you fed us, and you never left anybody behind. You taught me responsibility, to always give back. Mom, you are the embodiment of unconditional love, and I love you very much.

To my other hero, my father. Although my dad didn't toss around the words "I love you" often, through his tough love and discipline, I knew he did. I knew he never wanted me I knew I never wanted to live the life he lived, as he grew up on the tough streets of St. Louis, and more than once he'd been shot or stabbed, but the reason I ascribe the word "hero" to him is that he always did his very best he knew how to prepare us for his version of life as a black man in America.

And his version was harsh. When I was 12, my father became ill. Until he went to the hospital, I didn't know how sick he was. I didn't know he was the original Iron Man. I didn't matter how many times he'd been sick or hurt, he'd always bounce back. But not this time. My father died of lupus when he was 41. And obviously my dad never saw me play in the National Football League. Until this day I think about him and I wonder: Did I gain his respect?

(Cheers and applause.)

Dad, I hope you're looking down, smiling, and uttering the words: Son, I'm proud of you.


Pops taught us toughness and wisdom. My mother taught us courage and compassion. The earnest dedication of both my parents is why I humbly stand before you.

Preparing for today was like preparing for a football game. It has required everything I could possibly give and has changed my life. Sitting in the stands that fateful day at Georgia also changed my life. That day my dedication to dedicate my decision to dedicate myself to football and life became my mantra: Do and be my best, living up to the very high standards of an athlete and as a man.

So, as I close, in my mind's eye, I returned to that frightening moment as a teenager confronting the most severe crisis of my life. It was in that moment when I discovered my ability to hear God's voice. That knowledge has provided me the confidence to do whatever it takes and the awareness that we are never alone.

I've also learned that everything in life has a price. The question is: What price are you willing to pay? The price to quit on our dreams, or the price to do whatever it takes to fulfill our vision?

I stand before you as an example that, no matter what, we can achieve if we believe deeply enough, never quit, and know God's hand is always on the small of our back, supporting, propelling, and guiding us forward.

Thank you. May God bless. I salute you.

(Cheers and applause.)