We noticed earlier today an interesting item on the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Twitter feed.
Running back Emmitt Smith, whose bust will be talking with John Madden’s bust about getting “blowed out” when the lights go out in Canton beginning on August 7, becomes the first player enshrined from the draft class of 1990, the most recent draft year with a player who has made it into the Hall of Fame.
Prior to 1990, only two drafts have yet to produce a Hall of Famer: 1986 and 1943.
Charles Haley, taken 96th overall by the 49ers, gives the Class of 1986 the best chance at getting a Hall of Famer. Other possibilities include Pat Swilling (60th overall) and Pepper Johnson (51st overall).
First overall pick in 1986 Bo Jackson saw his brief but promising career derailed via a routine tackle that required a hip replacement. The best of the rest include Jim Everett, Leslie O’Neal, Keith Byars, Tim Green, Will Wolford, Neal Anderson, Ernest Givins, Webster Slaughter, John Offerdahl, Tom Rathman, Rueben Mayes, John Taylor (the wideout, not the CFT chief cook and bottle washer), Tim Harris, Napoleon McCallum, Brent Jones, Super Bowl XXVI MVP Mark Rypien, Clyde Simmons, and Vai Sikahema.
UPDATE: A couple of you have noted in the comments the absence of any 1984 draft picks. The Pro Football Hall of Fame lists three players as Hall of Famers from the Class of 1984: quarterback Steve Young, tackle Gary Zimmerman, and defensive end Reggie White.