Drew Bledsoe selected to Patriots Hall of Fame
|05.16.11 at 3:25 pm ET|
Drew Bledsoe is the 2011 inductee to the Patriots Hall of Fame, the team announced on Monday.
Bledsoe was the first overall pick of the 1993 NFL Draft and played nine seasons with the Patriots, throwing for 29,657 yards and 166 TD passes. Bledsoe led the Patriots to the playoffs in four of his first six seasons and in 1996 helped the franchise to an AFC Championship and berth in Super Bowl XXXI. Bledsoe’s final appearance in a Patriots’ uniform was a memorable one, as he came off the bench to relieve an injured Tom Brady and guide New England to a 24-17 win over Pittsburgh in the 2001 AFC title game.
The quarterback still holds Patriots’ single-season marks for attempts (691) and completions (400, both set in a 1994 season that saw Bledsoe lead the Patriots to seven straight wins a playoff spot after a 3-6 start).
‘Drew Bledsoe played such an integral role in our efforts to rebuild the Patriots brand,’ said Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft. ‘He gave fans hope for the future and provided many memorable moments during his record-breaking career. I will never forget Drew’s record-setting performance in that come-from-behind victory against Minnesota the year I bought the team. It sparked a seven-game win streak and put the Patriots back in the playoffs for the first time in a decade. For a franchise that had only hosted one playoff game in its first 35 years, winning the AFC Championship Game at home in Foxboro and taking the Patriots to the playoffs for three consecutive years were unimaginable goals prior to his arrival.’
Bledsoe — who beat out finalists Bill Parcells and Houston Antwine in fan balloting to earn the Hall of Fame honors — will join Jon Morris, who was selected to the Hall of Fame by the senior selection committee, as the 2011 honorees. Bledsoe and Morris will be inducted in a public ceremony outside The Hall at Patriot Place presented by Raytheon on Saturday, Sept. 17.