Being a punter in the NFL isn’t the most glamorous position on the gridiron. The Gumby-legged kings of the single-bar facemask's greatest value—field position—doesn’t show up on ESPN highlight reels. So it makes sense, in a way, that there has never been a punter inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame—until now.
On Saturday, Canton’s 2014 class included former Raiders punter Ray Guy. Here’s more about Guy, the first punter ever to be drafted in the first round, from the New York Times:
Guy was known for his ability to keep the ball aloft, giving teammates time to get in position to tackle the returner. But he was also a model of consistency, averaging more than 40 yards a kick in all but one of his seasons. Only three of his 1,049 punts were blocked, and he led the league in punting three times. He went to seven Pro Bowls and won three Super Bowl rings. He was named to the Pro Football Hall of Fame all-1970s team.
Here’s more from the Los Angeles Times: “So towering were Guy's punts that one of them plunked the New Orleans Superdome scoreboard, suspended 90 feet above the field. The whole concept of using a stopwatch to measure 'hang time' began with the Raiders timing Guy's punts to make sure they had a coverage team that was fast enough to get downfield and make plays.”