Earlier this week, the Pro Football Hall of Fame announced their 25 semifinalists for the 2021 induction class and former Chargers safety Rodney Harrison was named to the shortlist.
Harrison was originally a fifth-round pick of the Chargers back in the 1994 NFL draft out of Western Illinois University. During his nine-year career with the Bolts, Harrison was named to both of his Pro Bowls (1998, 2001) while also being named a First-Team All-Pro in those same seasons. In 2009, he was named as one of five defensive backs to the San Diego Chargers 50th Anniversary Team.
In 14 seasons, Harrison recorded 1,198 total tackles, 30.5 sacks, 34 interceptions, and 114 pass breakups. His 30.5 sacks is an NFL record for a defensive back and Harrison is also the first player to record 30 sacks and 30 interceptions during the regular season of their careers in NFL history.
During the 1997 season, he became first player in NFL history to score touchdowns on an interception return, fumble return, and kickoff return in same season.
While Harrison won his championships with the Patriots, it was his play with the Chargers that cemented him as one of the best players to ever play the safety position. He was one of the first defensive backs who played the hybrid box safety role that wasn’t afraid to mix it up and get his uniform dirty.
There’s a lot of phenomenal names up for the Hall this year, and while Harrison isn’t a sure thing to get in this season, it’s only a matter of “when”, not “if”, at this point.