JACKSONVILLE – Anthony Munoz has been part of many memorable moments.
Those moments include a Pro Football Hall of Fame career, but Munoz this past January was part of a moment he long anticipated and never will forget:
He told Tony Boselli he was in the Hall of Fame. At last.
"They called me and said, 'Would you like to go to Jacksonville and welcome Tony Boselli into the Hall of Fame?''' Munoz recalled. "I said, 'Do you even have to ask? When do I have to be there? When does my flight leave?'"
Munoz, a 1998 Hall inductee, recently joined senior writer John Oehser as part of a series of podcasts discussing Boselli – who in August will become the first former Jaguars player enshrined in the Hall. Munoz – widely considered the best left tackle in NFL history – discussed multiple topics, including what made Boselli a Hall-level player.
"He had everything," Munoz said. "He had the size. He was athletic. He had long arms. He had leverage. A lot of times tall guys have a tendency not to be able to bend at the knees and get down. He used his hands well. When I look at a left tackle, that's what I look at: flexibility, the ability to move out in space, nice hand usage and strength. Then there was a little of that nastiness, which all linemen need.
"When I looked at him when he played, those are the things I notice right away."
Munoz, too, discussed the January day when he told Boselli the news. Under Hall president Jim Porter, the organization this year has started a tradition of having a Hall of Fame player travel to a recently elected player and tell him the news.
That it was Munoz to inform Boselli was fitting – and not just because both played collegiately at the University of Southern California. Boselli, the Jaguars' left tackle from 1995-2001, a five-time Pro Bowl selection and three-time Associated Press first-team All-Pro selection, studied film of Munoz while at Southern Cal. The two also long have shared a mutual respect that made Munoz a fitting and willing messenger of the news.
"Tony opens the door, and it was just amazing," Munoz said. "To be able to give Tony a hug and say, 'Welcome to Canton' – what an honor. It was a thrill. It was a lifetime memory and experience for me."
For the entire podcast with Munoz speaking about Boselli, click here
To view the previous article in the series with Michael McCrary, click here