Now that the Jets have cut center Nick Mangold, who had spent his entire career with them, we can step back and take a broader look at his career.Bad QB options for the Jets: Boomer says, 'Tony Romo, Jay Cutler, Colin Kaepernick'
Yes, Mangold wants to continue playing, and might have some productive days ahead of him still. But at age 33, he is clearly in the twilight of his career.
With that in mind, here's a big-picture question: Is Mangold a future Hall of Famer?
In 11 seasons, Mangold has made seven Pro Bowls and twice has been named a first-team All-Pro, in 2009 and 2010. But his first-team All-Pro days are probably behind him now.
It's not easy to make the Hall of Fame as a center.
Seven modern-era players who were exclusively centers are in the Hall of Fame: Dermontti Dawson, Frank Gatski, Jim Langer, Jim Otto, Jim Ringo, Dwight Stephenson, and Mike Webster.
Dawson's final season was 2000, while Webster's was 1990, and Stephenson's was 1987. All of the other full-time center inductees retired before that. Dawson was a six-time first-team All-Pro, Webster a five-timer, and Stephenson a four-timer.
Ex-Jets center Kevin Mawae was again recently shut out of the Hall of Fame. Mawae's credentials: 16 seasons, eight Pro Bowl appearances, and three first-team All-Pro selections.
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From that perspective, Mangold is a tick behind Mawae right now, and Mawae hasn't been deemed worthy of the Hall of Fame just yet.
We'll see what Mangold can do with his next team, wherever he lands. But at this point, Mangold doesn't have strong enough Hall of Fame credentials. There is zero question, however, that he will eventually wind up in the Jets' Ring of Honor.
Darryl Slater may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @DarrylSlater. Find NJ.com Jets on Facebook.
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