Kansas City Chiefs legend Priest Holmes is set to be inducted into the Texas Sports Hall of Fame on April 15th after illustrious collegiate and NFL careers.
A native of Fort Smith, Arkansas, Holmes originally entered the league as an undrafted free agent by way of the Baltimore Ravens in 1997 after playing at the University of Texas. He found a long-term home in Kansas City in 200 and managed to put together one of the most impressive three-year runs in NFL history between his signing with the Chiefs through 2003.
Holmes recently spoke to reporter Brice Cherry of the Waco Tribune-Herald this week about his inspiration to play football in Austin and cited two all-time greats as motivating factors in his decision to commit to Texas after graduating from high school.
“For me, I looked at Earl Campbell,” He explained to Cherry. “One thing stood out to me — I didn’t look anything like Earl. So when I’m playing tackle football in the street, I’d see Tony Dorsett and the more I’d watch him and the more believable it would become when I’d see him. I thought, ‘I kind of look like him. I think I can run like him, I think I can pretend to be him.’ It was much easier to pretend to be him than pretend to be Earl Campbell, not having that type of size and stature.”
His ability to out-run, out-maneuver, and even bulldoze defenders cemented his place as one of the Chiefs’ most beloved running backs. Even years later, fans still recount his gritty running style that defined Kansas City’s brand of football in the early 2000s.
“All I wanted to do, I wanted to see Tony Dorsett’s locker,” Holmes told Cherry. “I’d heard he had a locker that was enshrined and still there, and you get a chance to walk the halls of where Tony Dorsett went.”
Though Chiefs legends like Christian Okoye and Marcus Allen weren’t part of the discussion relative to his college commitment, Holmes is sure to be forgiven by the Kansas City faithful who remain enamored by what he was able to accomplish on the field at Arrowhead Stadium.
For Chiefs fans in the Lone Star State who may want to attend the ceremony, a banquet is to be held in Waco, Texas on April 15th where Holmes will be in attendance with other inductees including Adrian Peterson and Michael Strahan.
Hopes in Kansas City are still high that Holmes may be considered for selection to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, though this most recent honor will have to suffice for now. As fans of the new era of NFL football start to yearn for the return of hard-nosed rushing attacks, Holmes’ effort and tenacity on the ground are sure to be appreciated even more as time goes on.