Russ Grimm: From Redskins to Steelers to Cardinals to ... Hall of Fame?
If you had asked me last week, I would have said Grimm was a long shot to get into the Hall of Fame. But in talking to Hall of Fame voters this week, I'm starting to get the feeling that Grimm's presence in Tampa as a coach is making some voters give a second look to his career as a player.
That career was impressive; he was selected to four Pro Bowls and won three Super Bowl rings as one of the famous Hogs. And while Grimm isn't lobbying for his own selection, his boss is doing plenty of lobbying for him.
"I know on a personal note, having been with Russ a number of years, what this would mean to him this weekend as far as the Hall of Fame goes," Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt said. "I think he's a player that is very deserving of it, one of the best players ever at his position to play in the league. I'm very hopeful that he'll get in."
Whisenhunt praised Grimm today for the way he's instilled toughness on the team, and it's been clear in talking to Cardinals players that they think Grimm has given them a winning attitude and a mean streak – and that they would love to see him enshrined in Canton.
But while several reporters have given Grimm the opportunity to do so, he isn't spending any time asking for votes. And he also isn't taking the bait when asked to talk about his past with the Steelers. Grimm was an assistant in Pittsburgh and would have liked to have been chosen for the head coaching job, which ultimately went to Mike Tomlin. But Grimm said he has no ill will toward the Steelers, or to owner Dan Rooney and his family.
"A decision was made, and I respect that," Grimm said. "It was time to move on, and then you go somewhere and start all over again. There are no hard feelings there. And I love the Rooneys. They were great to me while I was there. It's a good family and a great organization from top to bottom."
That's been Grimm's style all week, not saying anything to create any headlines. But if he's chosen to the Hall of Fame on Saturday and if the Cardinals win the Super Bowl on Sunday, he'll leave Tampa as the weekend's biggest winner.