Wade Phillips first attended a Pro Football Hall of Fame induction ceremony in 1991 when Earl Campbell was honored. He returned Saturday night to see Ricky Jackson enter Canton .
Jackson played for Phillips in New Orleans when Phillips was the Saints defensive coordinator from 1981-85.
“They are special,” Phillips said. “I was counting it up today. This is the 13th [Hall of Famer] that I’ve been with since 2000, either coached with or had on the same team as a player. It’s really neat that way.”
The Cowboys toured the Pro Football Hall of Fame after they arrived. Even the injured players, who don’t normally travel, made the trip so they could tour the Hall, which was closed to the public during the team’s tour.
“It is special, and if you’re in the league, you really ought to see it,” Phillips said. “I know the all really enjoyed it.
The Cowboys bumped into the Bengals in the Hall. It allowed several ex-Cowboys to renew acquaintances with their former teammates and co-workers, including defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer, safety Roy Williams, cornerback Pacman Jones, receiver Terrell Owens, defensive tackle Tank Johnson and receiver Antonio Bryant.
It was hugs all around. Williams acknowledged he missed Dallas but is appreciative to be in Cincinnati.
After the self-guided tour, Phillips allowed players and coaches to stay for the induction ceremony if they so desired. Tight end Jason Witten, quarterback Tony Romo, offensive coordinator Jason Garrett and receivers coach Ray Sherman were among those who took Phillips up on his offer.
“Some of the older guys appreciate it more,” Phillips said.