New Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee and former New York Giants defensive end Michael Strahan had some nice things to say about former opponent Philadelphia Eagles right tackle Jon Runyan during his Hall of Fame speech on Saturday night. Watch in the video above starting around the 33:00 mark. Here's the transcript:
"Why don't you stand up so they can see you. 6-9, 350 pounds, of twisted steel and non-sex appeal. [Runyan laughs]. Jon, you made me a student of the game. I'm going to talk directly to you. You made me a student of the game, man. When you went to the Eagles from Tennessee, it made me mad because I felt like they brought you to stop me. It really bothered me. You made me a student to study my opponent, to learn my opponent better than they knew themselves. And even though everybody thinks that I had so many battles against you and I was winning and everything - well, I was - but you, you won quite a bit of battles, man.
You were the toughest guy I ever had to face on a consistent basis. You made me a much better football player. And after watching these films and you don't play any more, your right foot gave away everything you were going to do. But I love you, Jon Runyan.
Runyan, a friend of Strahan's despite being an enemy for so long, flew to Canton to personally attend the event. It's a cool sign of respect between former rivals. The two met 15 times during their careers with Strahan recording 14.5 sacks in those games.