When Cameron Wake played for the Miami Dolphins it was as close to a Cinderella Story as you could get.
An undrafted free agent who didn't make an NFL roster, Cameron Wake left the New York Giants for the CFL where he made a name for himself. Then Dolphns' GM, Jeff Ireland, noticed. Wake was brought to Miami and the rest as they say was history.
Wake will be eligible for the HOF in 2025 but putting fandom aside, Wake isn't close to becoming a Hall of Fame inductee and I would argue that he shouldn't be the next Dolphins player to get into the Akron shrine.
For me, that is an order that from the top goes Bob Kuechenberg, Richmond Webb, and then we can debate the merits of Mark Clayton. After that, Cameron Wake can enter the discussion. In other words, don't get your hopes up Dolphins' fans, Wake is going to have a long wait, if ever. Forget about going in on his first year.
Despite Wake's statistics, his best stat isn't the sacks, more on that soon, it is the 4 All-Pros he made. The HOF voters weigh All Pros more than Pro Bowl votes. In Wake's case, the 4 do stand out and if we look at raw numbers between Wake and newly added Patrick Willis, there are some comps we can compare.
Wake played more games and totaled 80 more sacks. Willis posted almost 500 more tackles and went to two more Pro Bowls and was voted an All Pro two more times than Wake.
Wake simply doesn't make the splash that the voting committee seems to look for. It took Zach Thomas years to make the HOF and he was deserving out of the gate. Wake is going to be a fringe consideration to start his first few years of eligibility.
While this may sound like I am not on board with Wake getting to the HOF that is not correct, I hope he does. Wake was an incredible force on the field and his impact on the Miami Dolphins defenses was easily noticeable.
One thing that may keep Wake out of any real discussions over the next few years, however, is his sack and tackle totals. His 100 sacks are not good enough for the top 25 players in NFL history. Wake ranks 39th where he is tied with Hall of Fame member Charles Haley as well as Will Fuller.
It will be interesting next year to see how Wake is viewed in his first year of eligibility. Will he make the initial 100 players and if so, how many cuts until he is off the list? Personally, the HOF has become something of an enigma to me. Players that should be in are passed over because the voters don't like them, Kuechenberg, or because they claim their success was due to someone else, Marino and Webb.
Players are not always viewed on the same level, if they were, Zach Thomas would have been a lock for the HOF in his first several years of eligibility.