Four career Seahawks have busts in Canton. Here's a look at the other five the Seahawks' name appears on after signing them late in their careers.
Signing Dwight Freeney not only gives the Seahawks some immediate pass rush help but also likely increases their presence in the Pro Football Hall of Fame someday.
Unlike in baseball, where players’ busts feature them wearing caps of a specific team, the busts of NFL players in Canton list every team a player suited up for during his career.
So while the Seahawks have four players who spent their entire careers with the team who are in the Hall of Fame — receiver Steve Largent, left tackle Walter Jones, defensive tackle Cortez Kennedy and safety Kenny Easley — they are represented on the busts of five other players in Canton.
All were acquired in situations similar to that of Freeney — at the end of careers in which they had already done enough to likely warrant getting into the Hall of Fame (an NFL.com story earlier this year referred to Freeney as “Now Over the Top’’ in getting into the Hall due to an age-36 season last year in which he helped the Falcons get to a Super Bowl and added to a sack total that ranks 18th all-time in the NFL).
Here’s a look at other players who were briefly Seahawks (and in a couple cases moreso) who are now in the Hall of Fame.
DE Carl Eller: One of the most dominant pass rushers during a 15-year career with the Minnesota Vikings, the Seahawks traded for the then-37-year-old Eller prior to the 1979 season (Seattle got Eller and an eighth-round pick in exchange for defensive tackle Steve Niehaus, the first draft pick in team history in 1976). That reunited Eller with Seattle coach Jack Patera, the longtime defensive line coach with the Vikings before coming to the Seahawks. Eller was serviceable, starting eight games and playing in all 16 and making three sacks for a Seattle team that at 9-7 just missed the playoffs in its fourth year of existence. That was a lot more than the Vikings got out of Niehuas, who played just three more games before knee issues ended his career.
RB Franco Harris: Harris rushed for what was at the time the second-most yards in NFL history while playing with the Steelers from 1972-83. Entering the 1984 season, the then-34-year-old Harris wanted a new contract from the Steelers. Pittsburgh instead released him, making Harris a free agent. Harris, who was 363 yards away from breaking Jim Brown’s all-time rushing record, didn’t want to retire and when the Seahawks lost Curt Warner to a season-ending injury in the first game of the year, the matchup of the two became inevitable, with the Seahawks signing Harris two days after Warner’s injury. But it proved to be a brief and not-too-happy marriage as Harris had little left and gained just 170 yards on 68 carries before being released after eight games, ending his career. He became the first player with any affiliation with the Seahawks in the Hall of Fame when inducted in 1990.
QB Warren Moon: Moon’s in the Hall of Fame mostly for what he did during his 10 seasons in Houston. But he had two pretty good seasons in 1997 and 1998 with the Seahawks, who signed him after trading first-round bust Rick Mirer following the 1996 season. Moon started 24 games for the Seahawks over the next two years and made the Pro Bowl following the 1997 season when he threw for a then-team-record 3,678 yards.
DT John Randle: Randle played 11 seasons with the Vikings during which he became known as one of the best pass-rushing defensive tackles in NFL history. At 33, he signed a five-year, $25 million contract with the Seahawks in 2001 as Mike Holmgren tried to revamp a defense that had been horrid in 2000. Randle had more than a little left in the tank as he started 14 games in 2001 and had 11 sacks to earn the last of his seven Pro Bowl nods. He played two more seasons with Seattle, helping the Seahawks get back to the playoffs in 2003 before retiring.
WR Jerry Rice: Rice played most of his Hall of Fame career with the 49ers, where for a substantial time Holmgren was a San Francisco assistant. With the Raiders struggling in 2004 and Holmgren feeling the Seahawks needed some help with the offense, the Seahawks traded a conditional 2005 seventh-round pick as the trade deadline neared (the deal was made on Oct. 20) to acquire the then 42-year-old Rice. Rice played 11 games for the Seahawks with nine starts and had one last moment in the sun, catching eight passes for 145 yards in a wild Monday night game against Dallas. That was almost a third of his Seattle production, though, as he caught 24 passes for 362 yards and three touchdowns as a Seahawk before retiring for good.