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Kraft surprises Scarnecchia with Hall call

Robert Kraft surprised long-time assistant coach Dante Scarnecchia by inducting him into the Patriots Hall of Fame as a special contributor.

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Dante Scarnecchia has been a mainstay in New England for more than thirty years. During that time he's remained a part of the Patriots staff under four owners, six head coaches and helped the team capture five Super Bowl titles. It takes a special man to endure in a business alongside so many different personalities, and that's exactly what he is.

The man affectionately known as Scar by his players will always be synonymous with the Patriots, and now he will be immortalized as an official member of the team's Hall of Fame.

On Thursday as part of the current Hall of Fame committee's annual nomination meeting, Robert Kraft surprised Scarnecchia by announcing the long-time offensive line guru will be inducted into the Hall at Patriot Place presented by Raytheon as a special contributor.

It's certainly an honor that few have earned more than Scarnecchia. During the 1980s under Ron Meyer and Raymond Berry, Scar led the Patriots special teams in Foxborough. After a brief two-year stay in Indianapolis, he returned to the organization under Dick MacPherson, Bill Parcells, Pete Carroll and finally Bill Belichick.

It was as part of Belichick's staff that Scarnecchia's expertise with the offensive line really took off. He spent 19 seasons (1999-2014, 2016-19) working with the big guys up front, and his ability to develop young linemen was one of the most underrated aspects of the Patriots success.

Whether it was a first-round pick like Nate Solder or a newcomer to the sport such as Stephen Neal, Scar was able to mold and nurture his players in his own disciplined style. Always a tough taskmaster on the field, Scar managed to find the balance of earning tremendous respect from his troops and always seemed to get the most from the talent he had to work with.

Presenting the best photos of former Patriots offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia.

Fans arriving at an early-morning training camp practice in 2001 may have seen Scarnecchia doing his daily sprints, just as many of those same Patriots followers may have witnessed in 2019. The day or year didn't matter. He was a coach built on routine, and that probably explains why his units never seemed to be out of position or caught off guard even under the toughest of circumstances.

Scarnecchia's prowess is not just known within the confines of New England either. Last month he was selected to receive an Award of Excellence from the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The Hall began giving out the award in 2022 and it is given to those who propelled the success of individual teams and the sport of professional football.

He will be honored in Canton during a ceremony in June, but before that he was recognized closer to home and is most deserving of the honor of donning a red jacket in Foxborough

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