2006_02_sharrycarson.jpgOver the weekend, the NFL Hall of Fame anncounced its 2006 class, which finally included New York Giants linebacker Harry Carson. Carson spent all 13 seasons of his NFL career, from 1976-1988, with the Giants and was named to 9 Pro Bowl teams including 7 straight from 1982-1988. It was the Carson's 12th year of eligibility and 7th time as a finalist for the Hall of Fame. With the yearly rejections becoming a "burden" for Carson, 52, wrote a letter to the Hall in 2004 requesting that his name be removed from consideration and has said that he would not go to Canton if voted in. He has since reconsidered. When the Hall of Fame called to notify Carson of his election, he was on a plane to Hawaii and he first found out that he was elected from a fan who congratulated him at the airport. Carson thought it was a joke.

Carson played well from the start with the Giants. Despite playing defensive end at South Carolina State, he became the starting middle linebacker halfway through his rookie season and made the All-NFL Rookie Team. He was joined at linebacker later in his career with the Giants by Lawrence Taylor (a 1999 inductee) and Carl Banks, a group that was one of the best sets linebackers in the NFL in their day.

In addition to Carson, five others will be inducted in August - Troy Aikman, John Madden, Warren Moon, Reggie White, and Rayfield Wright.