It appears that one advantage of throwing your own Hall of Fame induction ceremony is that you can talk for as long as you want during your speech, and that’s exactly what Terrell Owens did over the weekend in Tennessee

After being introduced to the crowd in Chattanooga, Owens went on to to give a speech that ran for more than 39 minutes, which is believed to be the longest speech by any inductee in the history of the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Owens’ speech wasn’t televised, but it was timed by multiple organizations, including CBSSports.com. We had T.O.’s speech at 39 minutes and 12 seconds, the Associated Press had it at “about 39 minutes,” and ESPN.com had it at just under 40 minutes

No matter which number you use, T.O.’s speech was more than two minutes longer than any other Pro Football Hall of Fame speech ever given. Before this year, the unofficial record for longest speech by a player had been held by Brett Favre. The Packers quarterback famously winged his entire speech in 2016 and then went on to talk for exactly 36 minutes.  

One year later, Jerry Jones broke Favre’s record when he took the stage in Canton and gave a speech that lasted for exactly 36 minutes and 47 seconds. And then came Owens, who beat Jones’ time by more than two minutes, which might have actually thrilled T.O., considering the fact that Jones called Owens’ decision not to go to Canton a “mistake.”

Of course, the biggest surprise of 2018 might be the fact that Ray Lewis didn’t top everyone. When the Ravens linebacker took the stage on Saturday, it looked like he was ready to go on all night, but Lewis ended up only talking for just over 33 minutes

Owens’ decision to move his party to Chattanooga will likely now be remembered for three things: He became the first living inductee to skip out on the festivities in Canton, he gave the longest speech ever and the Hall of Fame might actually implement a new “Terrell Owens” rule going forward that would require all enshrinees to attend.  

The one downside to not attending is that Owens still hasn’t seen his bronze bust. Although T.O. got himself a gold jacket, the bronze bust didn’t make it to Chattanooga, and Owens admitted over the weekend that he probably wouldn’t get a chance to see it anytime soon. However, the bust is on display in Canton, and you can also see it below. 


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