Some interesting observations from former Raiders wide receiver Tim Brown Thursday night as he was inducted into the Bay Area Sports Hall of Fame.
Brown was a teammate of Charles Woodson, who returned to the Raiders Tuesday as a free agent, and also a fellow Heisman Trophy winner. When they played together, Brown was the consummate family man while Woodson was single and more of a man-about-town, someone who came to play on Sundays but wasn’t necessarily as involved Monday through Saturday.
Yet Brown, in a late-January conversation, never had any issue with Woodson because he came to play every Sunday.
Dan Brown of the San Jose Mercury News/Bay Area News Group caught up with Brown at the BASHOF ceremonies Tuesday night and this is how Tim Brown reacted to Woodson’s return to Oakland:
“I think it’s great. I think for C-Wood, it was probably the only move that he could have made. Once you get up there in age, you saw what Urlacher did. He just said, ‘I don’t want to put on another jersey.’
“I think when you get up there in age, you want look around and say, ‘OK, I have to go some place where I’m comfortable. Because I’m not trying to learn new people at 36 y’ears old.’ That’s why I chose to be with (Jon) Gruden because it was someone I knew and there were five or six players that I knew very well. So it was a comfortable environment for me.
”For him, coming back here is going to be great. He has a chance to kind of right some of those wrongs that he had while he was here. I don’t know if he was the leader back then that he ended up being in Green Bay. So now he gets to come back here and fix everything he needs to fix and go out on a high level.”
Brown, who has been denied in his first three attempts at the Pro Football Hall of Fame, conceded he hadn’t given much thought about the signifcance of the Bay Area Sports Hall of Fame until given some perspective.
“Initially, I’m like, “OK. All right.” Because at that time I was waiting to see about the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
“But somebody who is a baseball fan said, ‘Dude, you’re going to be in a friggin’ Hall of Fame with Willie Mays.” I’m like, ‘Whoa.’ It just sort of changed the whole perspective of what this is about. This is not a football Hall of Fame. This is a Bay Area sports deal. And from that standpoint, we really started to look forward to this night.”
Brown said the selection of Fred Biletnikoff to present him at the ceremony was an easy one.
“To me, it was the only choice. Freddy was, what did I play, 15-16 years with the Raiders, and he saw the whole maturation process,” Brown said. “From struggling coming off my knee injury to being just happy be on the field to wanting to play hard to more to starting to making Pro Bowls and until the end of the 16 years.
“From that standpoint, I needed him to be part of the ceremony tonight. Whatever he’s going to say, he’s going to say because it’s not or ever was about his words. It’s just about him being part of the ceremony.”
Brown’s most cherished moment as a Raider?
“I think for me it was making it to the Super Bowl. We always felt it was us versus the world,” Brown said. “Us winning 12 games felt like winning 20 games. So I think to overcome everything we needed to overcome and still make it there was quite a moment of accomplishment on all of our parts.”