Lost in much of the hoopla surrounding the Super Bowl each year is the annual naming of the players who will enter the Football Hall of Fame.

This year's class includes former Vikings kicker Morton Andersen, RB Terrell Davis, S Kenny Easley, DE Jason Taylor, former Chargers RB LaDainian Tomlinson, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, and the QB who led the Rams to their only Super Bowl championship, Iowa's own Kurt Warner.

I'm sure I am not the only one who was surprised to learn that Warner is the first native-born Iowan to be inducted into the Football Hall of Fame.

Warner was born just south of the Quad Cities, in Burlington, Iowa, and played high school football in Cedar Rapids. He went on to play at University of Northern Iowa where he won the Gateway Conference Offensive Player of the Year award in his senior year. After a failed tryout with the Green Bay Packers, Warner took a job stocking shelves at Hy-Vee.

The story of most aspiring players ends there, but Warner was tenacious and landed the job of QB of the Arena League Iowa Barnstormers which led to a stint with NFL Europe, and in 1999, a starting job leading a St. Louis Rams team that would come to be known as "the greatest show on turf" to victory in Super Bowl XXXIV.

I remember Warner leading the Rams to Super Bowl XXXVI two years later, only to have the party spoiled by the Patriots, but I had forgotten that Warner was also QB for the 2008 Arizona Cardinals in Super Bowl XLIII - a narrow loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Read more about Warner's Hall of Fame worthy career, and enjoy celebrating your native son, Iowans.


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