Drew Bledsoe is this year's inductee to the Patriots Hall of Fame, as voted on by the fans.
Great call, fans.
What Bledsoe means to the Patriots franchise goes beyond what he did on the field, although his on-field performance alone is worthy of a spot in the Hall.
When Bledsoe was drafted No. 1 overall in 1993, he brought hope to a franchise that had fallen on hard times. With a franchise quarterback in place, along with a proven coach in Bill Parcells, the Patriots had two of the key pieces for a revival.
Bledsoe's rocket right arm delivered countless memorable performances in the ensuing years as the Patriots went from doormat to AFC East contender. Who could forget the 70 pass attempts against the Vikings in a scintillating overtime win in 1994? Or the Super Bowl appearance in the 1996 season? Bledsoe later played through pain, as the image of a pin emerging from his injured finger still resonates.
Those performances, coupled with him being a class act off the field, made Bledsoe an easy player to root for. For a stretch of years, one couldn't go anywhere close to Foxboro Stadium without seeing a slew of No. 11 jerseys.
So this seems fitting. In his first year of eligibility, Bledsoe enters the Patriots Hall of Fame.
Just as he made a mark immediately upon his arrival in New England, Bledsoe rightfully didn't have to wait long for this honor.