CANTON, Ohio – Cortez Kennedy said he planned to speak from the heart and talk about others who helped him during his career rather than himself in his Hall of Fame induction speech.
The Seahawks’ eight-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle did just that tonight, when he officially joined the Pro Football Hall of Fame during the nationally televised induction ceremony at Fawcett Stadium. But Kennedy also flashed his sense of humor that usually comes out only in smaller groups and less-pressurized settings.
He thanks everyone from his parents, Ruby and Joe Harris, and daughter, Courtney; to every coach he every played for; to most of the teammates he played with; to his childhood doctor. And it did it with a flash of humor that had to have some wondering if that really was Kennedy up there.
Kennedy was the fourth member of the six-man Class of 2012 to speak, following Willie Roaf, Jack Butler and Chris Doleman.
Kennedy’s lighthearted approach must have been contagious.
Steve Largent was the only member of the Hall who played his entire career with the Seahawks before Kennedy joined him. Asked about Kennedy during a TV timeout at the ceremony, Largent referred to the once 330-pound Kennedy have trimmed down to 265.
“Have you seen Cortez? He looks like a wide receiver, not a nose tackle,” Largent said.