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Mike Curtis: Pro Football HOF Enshrinement Would Be Special Because Of Teammates

August 21, 2019
For legendary former Baltimore Colts linebacker Mike Curtis, it'd be especially meaningful to be enshrined as part of next year's expanded Pro Football Hall of Fame class because he'd be immortalized alongside his former teammates.

Curtis, a native of Rockville, Md., spent 11 seasons with the Baltimore Colts (1965-1975) and earned four Pro Bowl nods. Curtis became a Super Bowl champion during the 1970 season when the Colts defeated the Dallas Cowboys in Super Bowl V.

Curtis' career spanned from 1965-1978. He also played for the Seattle Seahawks (1976) and the Washington Redskins (1977-1978). Curtis is now looking to earn a spot in the upcoming 2020 Pro Football Hall of Fame class, which has been expanded to 20 total inductees, 10 of whom will be senior inductees. The expanded class is part of the NFL's celebration of its 100th season.

Many have wondered how Hall of Fame enshrinement has eluded the "Mad Dog," known as one of the grittiest and most talented linebackers to ever play the game.

Curtis, 76, the first player to ever earn All-Pro honors at outside linebacker (1968) and middle linebacker (1969), now wants to enter the Hall of Fame for his former teammates, some of whom have passed away.

"For one thing, all the players were friends, and they would help do their job so that I could look good at my job," Curtis said on Glenn Clark Radio Aug. 12.

Some of Curtis' former teammates who have busts in Canton are former Colts such as receiver Raymond Berry (Class of 1973), running back Lenny Moore (1975), quarterback Johnny Unitas (1979) and tight end John Mackey (1992).

When asked to name a teammate he was closest with, he made it clear he had no favorites.

"All of them," Curtis said.

Curtis, Mackey and Unitas were on the 1970 Colts team that took down the Dallas Cowboys, 16-13, in Super Bowl V. All three were also on the same Colts team a couple of seasons earlier that lost to the Jets in Super Bowl III, which Curtis still feels was nothing more than luck even today. 

Either way, while Curtis is still hopeful his achievements will be enough to secure him a spot in the next class, he also feels that it is not the be-all, end-all.

"It'd sure mean a lot to me in this part of my life, but I don't let it bug me if I don't get in," Curtis said. "That's the way it is. Sometimes you've got to educate some people."

"I don't analyze how other people judge me. I just accept it when it comes," Curtis added.

To hear more from Curtis, listen to the full interview here:

Photo Credit: Manny Rubio/USA Today Sports