Ken Anderson is often listed among the best quarterbacks not in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but if he was ever going to make it, it was probably going to be this year, when an expanded Hall of Fame class was chosen in conjunction with the NFL’s 100th anniversary.
Anderson didn’t make it, which means he may never make it, and he’s OK with that.
“I don’t think twice about it, to be honest with you, except those times of year when it comes time for the election and somebody will call and say, ‘What do you think?’” Anderson told Sporting News. “Other than that, it doesn’t cross my mind. I guess the only time I was disappointed was the first time I was eligible, and I got into the final 15 and didn’t make it, and then it was disappointing. After that, I guess when you come from my background and grow up in a small town and go to a small high school and then go to a small college, you never dream about those things. My dream was fulfilled when I got a chance to play professional football for 16 years.”
During his 16-year career with the Bengals, Anderson led the NFL in passer rating four times, led the NFL in completion percentage three times and led the NFL in passing yards, yards per attempt and completions twice each.
He was the league MVP in 1981 and took the Bengals to the Super Bowl after that season. He has good credentials, but they haven’t been enough to get him a bust in Canton, and he’s made his peace with that.