“Mongo” is finally getting his place in Canton, earning the recognition he deserves
Former Bear Steve McMichael also known as “Mongo” has been elected to the Pro Football Hall Of Fame as part of the 2024 class.
Steve McMichael was a star defensive tackle for the Chicago Bears and was part of their 1985 team that won the Super Bowl. McMichael was instrumental to the ’85 Bears defense, considered the best defense in NFL history.
Mongo’s career was characterized by his unrelenting ferocity and his outspoken nature. He gave his all in every single down and every minute of every game he played.
McMichael, who has waited decades for his induction, was one of three Seniors Committee finalists for this year’s class. He needed to receive 80 percent of the vote from the Hall of Fame’s 50-person selection committee.
He got that 80 percent and will now be immortalized in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio.
Steve McMichael and his battle with ALS
in 2012, McMichael went public with news that he was battling ALS, a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. The fatal disease currently has no cure.
After McMichael notified the world of his ALS diagnosis, fans and McMichael’s friends and family began fervently campaigning for McMichael’s hall of fame induction. Over 29 thousand people signed a petition started by McMichael’s family, urging Canton to induct the 66-year-old.
When Steve McMichael was notified of his Hall of Fame nomination in 2023, his wife spoke of the importance of the nomination.
“He would have died at home if it wasn’t for the nomination,” McMichael’s wife Misty told the Chicago Sun-Times in 2023. “He was dying in front of us. We ripped up the DNR (do not resuscitate orders) because of the nomination. He has to live to see this.”
Although he has lost the ability to speak, when McMichael heard the news of his hall of fame finalist nomination, he was all smiles.
Steve McMichael’s stats are well deserving of the Hall of Fame
The former third-round pick had a lengthy 15-year NFL career, 13 of those years as a Bear. McMichael accumulated 95 sacks, 838 solo tackles, and 13 forced fumbles in his career. Even as a defensive tackle, he recorded two interceptions. He also scored 3 safety’s in his career.
Mongo, trails only Richard Dent for the most sacks in Chicago Bears history.
He was a two-time first-team all-pro and two-time second-team all-pro and a two-time pro bowler.
Based on stats alone, McMichael is more than worthy of the Hall of Fame. For comparison, another hall of fame defensive tackle, Warren Sapp. Sapp has nearly 400 less career solo tackles than McMichael at 440 and only has 6 more sacks at 96.5. The two players both won one Super Bowl and played a similar amount of years in the NFL (13 vs 15). Sapp is worthy of Canton, and so is McMichael, the voters have now realized this.
Steve McMichael was essential to the historic ’85 Bears defense. He was one of the keys to that defenses ability to blowup run plays and harass opposing quarterbacks. With his Hall of Fame induction, Steve McMichael has finally been given the respect and recognition from the football world he deserves. He will forever be immortalized among the games greatest and most influential, of which he is both.
For More Great Chicago Sports Content
Follow us on Twitter at @chicitysports23 for more great content. We appreciate you taking time to read our articles. To interact more with our community and keep up to date on the latest in Chicago sports news, JOIN OUR FREE FACEBOOK GROUP by CLICKING HERE