Looking ahead at future Hall of Fame classes

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The seven members of the 2014 class of the Pro Football Hall of Fame have received their busts in Canton, Ohio, and now that enshrinement weekend is behind us, let’s look ahead at the players, coaches and contributors who could comprise the next five Hall of Fame classes.


Junior Seau will be eligible for the first time next year, and he’s the one man who looks like a lock for the class of 2015. Seau’s enshrinement will bring up stories about his suicide and questions about whether brain damage on the football field could have led to his depression, but his enshrinement should also be a celebration of one of the greatest linebackers ever to play the game.

Paul Tagliabue, the former commissioner, may be the biggest beneficiary of the Hall of Fame’s new policy of voting on contributors separately from players and coaches. In past Hall of Fame votes, Tagliabue has lost out, but now that he’s no longer competing with players and coaches, there’s a good chance that he’ll be enshrined next year.

Steve Sabol would also be a good choice in 2015, when there will be two Hall of Fame finalists from the separate contributors category. Sabol’s father Ed is already in the Hall of Fame, but both Sabols deserve busts in Canton for building NFL Films.

Kurt Warner is, after Seau, the player with the best chance of being enshrined in his first year of eligibility next year. Some may say Warner’s greatness was too short-lived to merit Hall of Fame induction, but a player with two regular-season MVP awards and a Super Bowl MVP award is probably going to end up in Canton.

Orlando Pace protected Warner’s blind side in St. Louis and was one of the best offensive tackles in the NFL for a decade, and he’ll also be eligible for the first time next year.

Torry Holt and Isaac Bruce were the top two receivers on the Greatest Show on Turf, and they both retired after the 2009 season, making them eligible in 2015. (You can be forgiven if you’ve forgotten that Holt was in Jacksonville and Bruce was in San Francisco in 2009.) It would really be something if they were both inducted along with Warner and Pace. That, however, is awfully unlikely. Wide receivers have had a hard time getting into Canton in recent years, and Holt and Bruce may end up competing against each other and therefore hurting each other’s chances in much the same way that Steelers greats John Stallworth and Lynn Swann did for many years.

Jerry Kramer, the great Packers offensive lineman, would be a strong choice as a senior candidate. Next year will be a harder year for seniors to get in, as only one senior finalist will be nominated. But Kramer may be the most deserving senior candidate eligible.


Brett Favre is a sure thing to be inducted in 2016, and the Packers have already begun the process of turning the year before his induction into a long ceremony honoring Favre, who will have his number retired in 2015.

Terrell Owens also becomes eligible in 2016, but he’s a long shot. Owens is second only to Jerry Rice on the all-time receiving yards list and third behind Rice and Randy Moss in receiving touchdowns, but Owens acted like such a jerk, so often, that he’s remembered as much for becoming a disruptive force in the locker room as he is for being a dominant force on the field.

Eddie DeBartolo Jr., the former 49ers owner, may benefit from the new contributors category and be enshrined soon. The question is whether Hall of Fame voters will reward DeBartolo for his role in building the great 49ers teams of the 1980s and 1990s, and overlook the circumstances that led DeBartolo to be forced out of the NFL.

Jerome Bettis may finally get his bust in Canton in 2016, as a relatively weak crop of first-year eligible players will make room for those who have previously been passed over.

Will Shields, the great guard for the Chiefs, would also seem likely to benefit from a lack of first-year eligible players, although there have been so many great offensive linemen enshrined in Canton in recent years that it’s hard for any one to gain recognition over all the others.

Marvin Harrison was voted down this year, but he had so many great seasons as a receiver for the Colts that it seems like just a matter of time before he gets in, and 2016 may be the year.

Randy Gradishar and Ken Stabler are a couple of good senior candidates who may be enshrined in 2016, when two seniors will be eligible. (Only one senior is eligible in 2015, 2017 and 2019.)


LaDainian Tomlinson becomes eligible for the first time in 2017, and with 13,684 career rushing yards, Tomlinson looks like a good bet to make it. Only four players have more yards than Tomlinson (Emmitt Smith, Walter Payton, Barry Sanders and Curtis Martin) and all four are already in the Hall.

Jason Taylor becomes eligible in 2017 as well, and he has a good case, although he may be joining a crowded field of pass rushers, as we’ll detail momentarily.

Kevin Greene was voted down as a Hall of Fame finalist last year, but with 160 sacks in his career, he seems sure to get in eventually: The only players with more career sacks than Greene were Bruce Smith and Reggie White, two of the greatest players in NFL history. The 2017 class may be the one that finally makes room for Greene.

Charles Haley also might finally get his Hall call in 2017. He’s been voted down five times already, but his contributions to Super Bowl winners in both San Francisco and Dallas should be enough to earn him a bust at some point.

Hines Ward was a great wide receiver and a Super Bowl MVP winner, and he’ll be eligible for the first time in 2017. But Ward’s career numbers (1,000 catches for 12,083 yards and 85 touchdowns) are dwarfed by those of some other recent receivers, and Ward may suffer by comparison.

Brian Dawkins was a nine-time Pro Bowl safety who also becomes eligible in 2017, but he seems unlikely to be selected in his first year of eligibility. Dawkins was a beloved player both on and off the field, and at some point the voters may put him in Canton, but that point probably won’t be until he’s on the ballot for at least a few years.

George Young, the former Giants general manager, is just the kind of person that the new “contributors” category is designed to recognize, and the 2017 class may be the year that the late Young gets his due.

Don Coryell would appear to be a likely choice as a senior candidate some day, and 2017 may be when that day comes. Coryell never won a championship as a coach, but he was such an innovator of the passing game that he’s a significant figure in the history of football.


Ray Lewis will be an easy choice as one of the greatest defensive players in NFL history. There’s no room for debate on that.

Randy Moss may leave some room for debate, as his numbers are comparable to those of Terrell Owens, who looks like a long shot. But Moss at his best was such a game-changer that he just feels like exactly the kind of player who belongs in Canton.

Brian Urlacher, who like Lewis and Moss becomes eligible in 2018, has a very good case for enshrinement as well. Although he’ll suffer in comparison to Lewis, there will probably be enough support for Urlacher to get him enshrined in his first year of eligibility.

Steve Hutchinson was a great guard and also becomes eligible in 2018, but he won’t get in on his first year of eligibility. Hutchinson may be a finalist many times, but getting the necessary 80 percent of the vote will be tough.

Tim Brown is a longtime finalist who feels like he accomplished enough in the NFL (usually while serving as the only decent threat in his teams’ passing games) that he should be recognized eventually. The 2018 class may be the year.

Art Modell has been voted down several times, and the opposition to his candidacy is strong from some who say that taking the Browns out of Cleveland was an unforgivable sin. But the new contributors category gives Modell a much better chance, and 2018 could be his year.

Bob Kuechenberg and Cliff Harris are among the best senior candidates who haven’t been selected yet.


Tony Gonzalez becomes eligible for the first time in 2019, and he’s just about a sure thing as one of the greatest tight ends ever to play the game.

Ed Reed also becomes eligible for the first time in 2019, and he also looks like a sure thing as one of the greatest safeties ever to play the game.

Tony Dungy was voted down in his first year of eligibility last year and may be voted down a few more times, but he’s likely to get in eventually, and 2019 could be the year.

Morten Andersen was also voted down this year in his first year as a Hall of Fame finalist, but he also has a good case to make it eventually. Andersen, the NFL’s all-time leader in points scored, would join Jan Stenerud and Ray Guy as the only kicking specialists in the Hall of Fame.

165 responses to “Looking ahead at future Hall of Fame classes

  1. Why not stretch the look forward all the way out to 2039 and include Jameis Winston, Marcus Mariota and Jadeveon Clowney?

  2. Tomlinson “looks like a good bet to make it.” That’s funny. He’s as sure of a thing to get in as any other player listed here.

  3. I know there is no chance all 4 get in, but dang that would be crazy to see Warner, Pace, Holt, and Bruce get in.

    I don’t understand why Kevin Greene hasn’t gotten in though. 3rd all time in sacks. Is it because of his stint in WCW that voters don’t like him? He certainly deserves to get in.

    You didn’t add Simeon Rice to any of those. Derrick Brooks and Warren Sapp will not be happy lol.

  4. Very interesting article and I agree with the vast majority of selections. One that I really need to push back against is Ed DeBartolo Jr. “…and overlook the circumstances that led DeBartolo to be forced out of the NFL.” No way. In addition to the corruption case, DeBartolo also cheated other NFL teams by circumventing the salary cap. It’s one thing to break the law, but when a person breaks the law in connection with the game itself (e.g. Pete Rose), it’s an entirely different ballgame, pun intended.

  5. Seau-Yes
    Warner-Borderline, but I think he makes it.
    Favre-Is there any doubt? Madden will probably handle the speech.
    Owens-Pain in the rear, but the stats don’t lie, he has to be in.
    Moss-See above.
    Bettis-I hope so, but I’m not sure he makes it.
    Shields-Maybe not the first time, but eventually
    Harrison-Yes. If Lynn Swann is in, Harrison is a no brainer.
    Stabler-As a Raider fan, of course Yes!
    Tomlinson-RBs with worse stats are in, so yes.
    Taylor, Greene, Haley-All three eventually, but Greene and Haley have to go first.

  6. Warner is not a first ballot HOF. The HOF should be reserved for guys that dominated the NFL for at least 10 years. Warner flamed out with the Giants. Yes, he had several great seasons but not enough to make the HOF. If he had produced at that level for 10 years then yes but he didn’t so he shouldn’t get in.

  7. No Mike Holmgren? He has a better resume that’s more Hall of Fame worthy than Tony Dungy! Turned two franchises around and made it to 3 Super Bowls, yet no consideration??

  8. and no Ty Law?
    but Tony Dungy gets in? This is why the Profootball Hall of Fame is a joke

  9. TO should not be a long shot. This is the nice guy hall of fame, it’s the pro football hall of fame, and when you put up those numbers, you belong in the hall, no questions.

  10. Call me biased but…

    Don Coryell was a pretty good HC, but he shouldn’t get into the HOF before Tom Flores who was the HC for 2 Super Bowl winners.

    It’ll be good when Snake finally gets in. The fact that an inferior QB like Namath is in while Stabler has been excluded is criminal. And if Namath is in, then Jim Plunkett definitely should be on the list too.

    Where is Cliff Branch? He was on a par with John Stallworth as a WR and both were vastly superior to Lynn Swann (who is in). (and in case I’m accused of Steeler-hatred, I think L.C. Greenwood should be enshrined)

    Among the others mentioned, I don’t think that Kurt Warner is deserving of immediate induction. And I don’t think Moss is deserving either.

  11. The NHL Waived the waiting period for transcendent stars like Bobby Orr, Wayne Gretzky and Mario Lemieux to be inducted in to the Hall-of-Fame.

    I would like to see the NFL do the same in the case of obvious all-time greats.

  12. It would sure be nice to see Jim Marshall finally get in. He was the all time iron man before Brett Favre broke his record of consecutive games started, and ht was an integral piece of the Purple People Eaters – one of the best defensive units of all time. Marshall deserves to be in the hall.

  13. Tony Dungy?

    Seriously, coached the most talented team in history in losing to the Patriots almost every year they were together.

    Does not deserve to be in the HOF in any way, shape or form.

  14. It’s about time Randy Gradishar gets his due! Voters do the right thing and vote him in before it’s too late.

  15. Can’t see Dawkins in there. He was just a dirty player, and until there’s a HOF for that he should sit and wait.

  16. Seth Joyner has better numbers across the board than Urlacher. Urlacher is only famous because he played MLB for the Bears. Agree Randall should also be in. No to Bettis, Bruce, Holt and Warner. Steve Sabol definitely.

  17. I remember stories about Seau flattening Ryan Leaf in practice and being applauded for it. Too funny. Also, Warner should get in — he went from rags to riches with not one but two different NFL teams, getting the Cardinals to their first SB after basically being a 3rd stringer everyone assumed was toast. He also holds 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place in most passing yards in SB games, which is kind of amazing.

  18. T.O. and Moss are 1st ballots, no doubt. Those WRs were game changers and it didn’t matter who their QBs were. Hines Ward, no. Harrison, eh (benefited playing with PM). Holt/Bruce – No. I want WRs that scream HOF. Megatron is on his way. After him, not too many this generation…too early. Players like Bryant, Brandon Marshall are the closest and are on their way but they have a ways to go.

  19. Hopefully this is the last year I have to watch Warren Sapp covering the show on the network. Unvelievable why he is even on TV. Take a poll NFL network and look at the results you would get on Sapp. Terrible.

  20. FreewayJim says:
    Aug 4, 2014 12:54 PM
    The NHL Waived the waiting period for transcendent stars like Bobby Orr, Wayne Gretzky and Mario Lemieux to be inducted in to the Hall-of-Fame.

    I would like to see the NFL do the same in the case of obvious all-time greats.
    Respectfully disagree. If anything, I’d like to see it stretched to 10 years. We are a short-term memory nation. The result, we are rushing in players who we need to let marinate in our minds some more. Perfect case. Kurt Warner. He’s on NFLN, very visible and subject to the inherent conflict of interest that the league owned channel has in maximizing the number of HOF-ers on its panel. Let’s see in 10 years if Warner is still around on NFLN and if fans are still talking about him as one of the all time greats. No need to rush people in.

  21. Wait Terrelll Owens was a jerk so He cant get in?? But Moss took WHO Plays OFF but was a game changer so he is exactly what H O F needs??? Sorry Buddy I got Love for Moss but Owens NEVER took Plays Off and He made average QBs like Mcnabb Romo and Garcia look great. …On 1 Leg had 120 yards in the SuperBowl..If Moss gets in T O better Also…Rice Had Montana and Young..Moss Had Brady Who did T O Have??

  22. Compare Broadway Joke’s #’s and The Snakes and tell me who deserved to get in well before the conversation ever turned to senior nominees….

    Tim Brown is in the top 5 of almost every major passing category and isn’t in…Andre Reed and not Tim Brown? Look at the QB’s he had to work with. He’s a HOF’er.

    Kevin Greene….how on earth is this guy not a HOF’er? Some players being left out need to be explained by the commitee.

    Of the greatest show on earth team I think Pace is a lock, Warner is a most likely, Bruce is a most likely, Holt is a maybe and Az Hakim should get in because I’ll never forget that name or trading for him in madden for about 4 years straight. That speed…oh that speed!

  23. When is Ocho-Cinco eligible? Does playing in the CFL extend when he first becomes eligible? If so, that is probably why Tebow didn’t play in the CFL. He’s a lock for the HOF in his first year.

  24. Ronde Barber???

    1, 172 tackles
    28 sacks
    200 pass deflections
    47 interceptions
    13 forced fumbles
    12 defensive TDs

    (only PLAYER ever to have 25 sacks and 40 ints, also most sacks by a corner ever)

    5x Pro Bowl
    3x First Team All-Pro
    most consecutive starts by a cornerback ever
    NFL 2000s All Decade Team
    Superbowl Champion

    Oh, and he also had the most important play in franchise history. “Coast to coast, Ronde Barber!”
    (McNabb is still sobbing about it)

  25. So Marvin Harrison is involved in off field shootings but you don’t care to mention that. But T.O.
    was a nuisance in the locker room but he is the bad guy. Doesn’t surprise me.

  26. Micheal Strahan 429 tackles …..
    Derrick Brooks 1297 Tackles …..
    Aeneas Williams 672 tackles ……

    Where is Clay ??
    Clay Mathews Jr. 1561 tackles …..

  27. Bettis def deserves to get in. He’s 6th all time in rushing yards and did most of it north of 265lbs. The Steelers road “The Bus” to a lot of victories. Never forget him trucking Urlacher in the snow at Heinz Field his last game in Pittsburgh. Oh and his final game was a Super Bowl victory, that never hurts your HOF resume.

  28. Randy Gradishar not in the hall of fame is another showing of the halls prejudice towards the broncos. 2,000 tackles shows his dominance. If he was a steeler or a 49er he would have been in many years ago.

  29. ponderrrrisnotaprobowler says:
    Aug 4, 2014 12:33 PM
    Jerome Bettis is not Hall of Fame worthy. Always overrated by the Pittsburgh hype machine and in L.A. before that.

    97 37
    Report comment

    They hype machine did not garner him the 6th most rushing yards in the history of the game.

    It wasn’t like hype on a Tuesday or Wed gave him 100 yards rushing on the following Sunday.

    He’s only one of 7 men with more than 13,000 career rushing yards.

    Now, Bettis is not the greatest or even in the conversation of the greatest running back of all time.

    He is however, a HOF running back with what he did on the field, even with his “hype” you mentioned.

    Bears Fan

  30. pbeddoe says:
    Aug 4, 2014 1:41 PM
    Seau is not hall of fame worthy. He was average at best, as much of the Chargers typically are.

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    Report comment


    Really? Not hall worthy you say?

    Junior Seau has the 4th MOST tackles in the history of the game.

    He is only one of four men to have MORE than 1,500 career tackles.

    Only three defensive players EVER have had more tackles than this man and you say he’s not hall worthy.

  31. Randy Moss will never get into the HoF as a player (maybe one day as a senior). Why? Beyond the absurd statistics due to the game changing and his penchant for fading in the second half of seasons, one phrase will grate against the voters: “I play when I want to play.”

  32. If TO or Moss don’t make it on first ballot, they may as well just remove WRs from the Hall of Fame, as it is getting kinda stupid how long WRs have to wait to get in (paging Tim Brown).

  33. “What were Paul Tagliabue’s contributions that delivered some element of fame?”

    How about this, he is not Roger Goodell.

    Seriously, I loved Rozelle, but Tagliabue will always be the commish to me. I miss him reading the cards at the draft.

  34. thepftpoet says:
    Aug 4, 2014 12:42 PM
    Top 5 Players of all time :

    1. Randy Moss
    2. Adrian Peterson
    3. Fran Tarkenton
    4. Alan Page
    5. Chris Carter

    And ZERO rings to show for it

  35. Paul Tagliabue hired a rheumatologist (skin doctor) as the head of the NFL’s medical department that publicly declared that concussions were not serious. If Tagliabue makes the Hall of Fame, it would be a disgrace.

  36. T.O. for all his issues was a great, great receiver. He basically carried the Eagles to a Super Bowl and played hurt. If he never gets in because of his childish behavior that would be a travesty when you have Michael Irvin – who was a real criminal, and dangerous too – ask the guy he stabbed with scissors. Or, L.T. who likes under-aged prostitutes and crack.

    In the words of another loud mouth HOF receiver – c’mon man.

  37. Kurt Warner’s success was short-lived, but he started three Super Bowls, and played well enough to (at least to this point) hold the top three passing yardage performances in Super Bowl history. His teams had a chance to win all three games. His final seasons in Arizona should seal his chances.

    Stabler? While he had some success in the 1970’s, Stabler didn’t have a high enough level of success for a long enough period of time. He didn’t capture the starting job from Daryle Lamonica until 1973, and by 1978, started a tailspin that washed him out of Oakland. For his career, he threw more INTs than TDs.

  38. I liked Hines Ward but he was slightly above average during his prime. After that two year stretch among middle of the road he was talked about for being a good blocker. If he goes in and Tim Brown doesn’t that will be a bigger mistake than suspending Ray Rice for ONLY two games.

  39. I just typed in a long post summarizing Tim Brown’s career. It posted briefly — then vanished.

    What gives?

    lllll aj

  40. I don’t know if he will ever get in but one thing I do know is that Donovan McNabb would voted in twice before Hines ward.

  41. @ boobie323

    Although I believe both TO and Moss are 1st ballot, no questionsn saying TO had nobody at QB isn’t really accurate, as is saying Moss had Brady.

    Moss had Brady all for like 2yrs. But he did had Cunningham, and Culpepper.

    TO had Young too, then Garcia (eh) and McNabb/Romo. McNabb and Romo aren’t great, but they both put up big numbers.

    Both WRs benefitted from playing next to arguably the 1st/2nd best WRs of all time, Rice and Carter.

    Like I said though, you’re on point in saying both should easily get in HOF

  42. How is TO such a disruption that he can’t get in but Randy Moss who literally quit on his team more than once wasn’t?

  43. Until Will Shields is in, the second best Guard in NFL history (behind only John Hannah) the HOF will continue to be a complete sham.

    The fact that Strahan was a first ballot entrant, and Ray Guy got in makes it so too.

  44. ” For his [Stabler] career, he threw more INTs than TDs.”

    And Namath’s numbers are worse.

  45. What were Paul Tagliabue’s contributions that delivered some element of fame?

    Compared to what we currently have, he should have been on the first ballot.

  46. I think the knock on Seau was that he wasn’t very good at shedding blocks or defeating a blocker to make a tackle. San Diego would scheme to let him roam sideline to sideline, or knife through the guards and chase the play from behind.

    I have no idea if that was fair criticism or not since I didn’t get to see many Charger games when Seau was in his prime.

  47. I would love to see Randy Moss’s bust depicting him squirting a ref with a water bottle. Its better than he trying to run down a meter maid with his car. Classless Viking is being redundant.

  48. The best team of the 2000’s should get a few HOFers.

    Richard Seymour was THE BEST 3-4 end for half a decade and for many years a top end or DT.

    Ty Law was the BEST DB on 3 super bowls and has so many big plays in big games, picking off Manning in many playoff games and the INT TD in the Super Bowl off Warner.

    A case can be made for Bruschi who doesn’t have the stats but lead a defense that won 3 Bowls and went to another. Big plays after big plays.

    And Rodney Harrison should be in no question, as one of the best safeties on the Chargers and a tone setter with the Pats.

  49. What about Atwater. Only Him, Seau, and Greene are the only first team players from the All 90s team that aren’t in the HOF. He has almost 2x tackles as Ed reed. 8 x probowler 3 time all pro. He should be in before any other safety

  50. justintuckrule says:
    Aug 4, 2014 1:02 PM
    T.O. and Moss are 1st ballots, no doubt. Those WRs were game changers and it didn’t matter who their QBs were
    Um…so those two seasons in Oakland at the prime of Moss’ career with Kerry Collins, Andrew Walter and Aaron Brooks playing qb just didn’t happen???

    I think Moss will get in but the truth is he was only elite when surrounded by other elite talent and BABYSITTERS (Chris Carter, Jake Reed, Wes Welker…). Whenever he was the defense’s sole focus or treated like a grown adult he either couldn’t get it done or simply gave up trying.

    Agree on T.O., though. Lousy human being but just too productive not to get in on the first ballot, and he always performed on game day regardless of locker room drama.

  51. Aug 4, 2014 2:12 PM
    ” For his [Stabler] career, he threw more INTs than TDs.”

    And Namath’s numbers are worse.


    Namath doesn’t belong in the Hall of Fame either. By far the worst player in the HOF.

  52. No chance that Bettis should make it. He was never a dominating player, he was just an overweight fullback that did best when be was sharing carries with more talented backs. People remember him fondly because of his career ending with a superbowl win in his hometown (a game where willie Parker completely out shadowed him, and the refs gave away).

  53. Say what you want about TO, but he brought it every Sunday, and even at this age is in tip-top shape better some currently playing. He is getting in for sure so dont even bother.

  54. Burgundyandgold , your right T.O. carried the Eagles to the superbowl. Even though the Eagles made 3 NFC championship games before him and he didn’t play a single snap in the playoffs for the Eagles before the superbowl.

    Thats why we all love Redskins fans they are all so well informed.

  55. Moss’ years in Oakland were lost seasons. If you want to keep him out for those seasons, you’re gonna lose a lot of candidates that had failed stopover teams.

    By the way, Moss played the bulk of his time in Minn w/o Carter (who was at the end of his career anyway).

  56. Just say NO to Art Modell.

    OK, I won’t say NEVER to Art Modell. When the Browns have one more Super Bowl ring than the Ravens, let’s revisit it then, and not until then.

  57. patriotsdefense says:
    Aug 4, 2014 12:46 PM
    I don’t know when, but Ty Law is going to get in.
    I’m a Pats fan and Law was good but I think Rodney Harrison deserves to be in before him.

    I’ll wave a banner for Jason Taylor though. He should make the Hall just for how he played against the Pats. The year he won Defensive Player of the Year (07?)I think the Dolphins had one of the worst run defenses in the NFL so no one had to pass against them, but he had double digit sacks. Pretty amazing.

  58. Michael Irvin: 12 Seasons, 750 receptions, 11,904 yards and 65 TD’s with Aikman at QB for 140 of a career 159 games.

    Andre Reed: 16 seasons, 951 Receptions, 13,198 yards and 87 TD’s with Jim Kelly for 144 of a 234 career games

    Both HOF’ers

    Tim Brown: 16 Seasons, 1,094 receptions, 14,934 yards and 100 TD’s with Rich Gannon for 77 of a 202 career games (Jay Schroeder 57, Hostetler 55, Jeff George 23).

    Please explain.

    Led the NFL in receptions in 1997, 9 time pro-bowler…I mean….88 he led the league in all purpose yards…

    Tim Brown is a Hall of Famer. Period.

  59. Haley needs to get in. It’s getting a little ridiculous at this point. He wasn’t “just a guy” on 5 Super Bowl teams, he was a serious contributor.

    Haley needs to get in ASAP.

  60. Jerry Kramer’s been the strongest Senior candidate for a number of years now…

  61. Mick Tingelhoff, named All-Pro 6 times and went to the pro bowl 5 times, played 16 years in the NFL. Jerry Kramer, 5 time pro bowler, played 11 years in the NFL. Both deserve to be in the HOF. MICK 1st by a small margin.

  62. Dawkins is maybe one of the top 5 safeties to ever play.. Anyone that actually knows and understands football would have a hard time putting Lewis in a top 10 LB’s of all time list

  63. Charles Woodson 2020?

    Now according to Viking fans in the future every player that will be on this years roster
    Including coaches etc etc etc
    I mean how can you not include paper hall of famers with multiple preseason on paper Superbowls

  64. Where is Lawyer Milloy?!? I am not even a Patriots fan but he was a beast. Also TO is a first ballot IN for sure. I didn’t care for him but he was a beast.

  65. 1999-2001 Rams.
    Marshall Faulk
    Aeneas Williams

    On horizon:
    Kurt Warner
    Orlando Pace
    Isaac Bruce
    Torry Holt

    90’s Ram:
    Kevin Greene
    Been a Rams fan since 8 yrs old in 1988.
    This means alot and proud of these guys. Just glad my Ramswon a SBowl in my lifetime. Something I never saw coming from 88-98. We were horrible till most of these guys showed up and schocked the NFL.
    Thank you Rams. Hope they come back to L.A.

  66. I loved the Raiders of the 70s, but looking at the numbers, it pains me to conclude that Stabler’s numbers are not Hall worthy. If he wasn’t on a great team with a great coach and a owner who hadn’t gone insane yet, then no one would be talking about the Snake.

  67. I am a huge dungy fan. But he does not belong in the hof.

    How many years did he take to win a super bowl with manning?

    Other than be the first African American to win the super bowl he is not worthy.

  68. stop saying “may” when you mean “might.” It’s annoying, and yes, I know that the internet now says that “may” can mean “might”.

  69. saxmachine69 says:
    Aug 4, 2014 1:15 PM
    Steve Hutchinson was the best guard in the NFL for a decade while with the Seahawks and Vikings. How could it be tough for him to get in?


    Yeah thats a head scratcher. Maybe because he’s a guard? He was all decade, a 6 time All-Pro, blocked for a 2,000 yard rusher, Alexander had the single season rushing TD record, and 2 running backs who were MVP’s.

  70. Why only 5 candidates per year? Honestly?

    Why not bump it up to 7-8? I don’t know why they’re stuck on this 5 number. If someone is worthy, they’re worthy. Let ’em in.

  71. i’m not really sure why everyone talks about tagliabue getting in. not even sure what he did in his tenure to deserve it. its really a shame that some of these guys are getting in based on average stats. its just no big deal anymore because anyone can get in.

  72. this list is mostly trash. i can’t even comment on all these other years, so let’s just stick with 2015 shall we?

    Junior Seau – in. no question.

    Paul Tagliabue – sure why not. he crushed the nflpa. although i do question his judgement allowing drunk driver extraordinaire back in the league. twice.

    Steve Sabol – in. NFL Films dominates.

    Kurt Warner – yes, simply for taking the Cardinals to the Super Bowl and almost winning.

    Orlando Pace – no. quitter and was only good in martz’s system.

    Torry Holt and Isaac Bruce – same as above for these two. ever do anything after the Rams? nope. system players.

    Jerry Kramer – sure need an old codger on the list.

  73. “Seau is not hall of fame worthy. He was average at best, as much of the Chargers typically are.”

    Dude I’m one of the biggest Raider homers out there and even I have to admit Seau belongs.

    Now if he wore a Donkey uniform, that would be different 🙂

  74. Zach Thomas was a better linebacker than Urlacher. Urlacher gets way too much hype because he played for the bears and did old spice commercials. He was above average at best. Zach Thomas was a 5th round pick that knocked out Shawn Jefferson so hard he was asking for his hs coach in his first game. I know Zach is borderline. Urlacher should at least be borderline as well. If he gets in first ballot then the entire process is a sham.

  75. Tim Brown: 16 Seasons, 1,094 receptions, 14,934 yards and 100 TD’s with Rich Gannon for 77 of a 202 career games (Jay Schroeder 57, Hostetler 55, Jeff George 23).

    Yes, let that sink in. He spent the majority of his games with Schroeder, Hostetler and George and still put up great numbers.

  76. I dont think Ward should be in HOF. But I would take him on my team any day over TO and Moss. Ward was a better all around team mate, blocked better, ran his routes hard and sold the play even when he knew he wasnt getting the ball.
    Dawkins was a beast and should get in. But he wont be first ballot. Atwater should be in already in my opinion

  77. kayakattack says: Aug 4, 2014 3:29 PM

    Dawkins is maybe one of the top 5 safeties to ever play.. Anyone that actually knows and understands football would have a hard time putting Lewis in a top 10 LB’s of all time list
    For you to even make this statement is absurd. Hate the guy for his off field incident, but on the field he’s the best MLB to ever play, and it’s not close. He has over 2000 tackles, and is the ONLY player in history to have more than 40 sacks and 30 INTs. He also played more consecutive seasons than any MLB in history, at a particularly brutal position. Additionally, he’s second all-time in solo tackles, his primary function. He’s a SB MVP, and a 2x champion, and the leader of perhaps the greatest defense ever(by points scored anyway) The only LBs in the GOAT conversation with Lewis are Butkus and Taylor. Period.

  78. If Randy Moss is selected, it will be his second induction – without him, cris carter never gets a sniff. The only Hall of Fame distinction associated with carter is being the single least deserving member of the Hall.

  79. My 2015 class:
    Seniors: Al Wistert, Jerry Kramer
    Rest: Tim Brown, Marvin Harrison, Terrell Davis, Haley, Randall Cunningham.

    Senior: Dick Stanfel, Ken Stabler
    Rest: Seau, Warner, Pace, Bruce, Favre, Kevin Greene.

    Senior: Bob Keuchenberg
    Rest: Priest Holmes, Tomlinson, Holt, DeBartolo,
    Shields, Rod Smith

  80. T.Brown is a lock for 2015. He caught passes from larry, moe and curly for most of hid career, yet still is top 10 in most wr categories. Bruce might join him, but I suspect he will wait. If any receiver deserves an old timers look it’s Cliff Branch. Same #’s as his contemporary Swann and 3 SBs on his hand.

  81. Kurt Warner, from the Wiki
    NFL records
    Most yards passing in a Super Bowl game – 414 yards (against Tennessee Titans)

    Most yards passing with no interceptions in a postseason game – 414 yards (Super Bowl XXXIV)

    Three highest passing yardage totals in Super Bowl history: Warner also owns the 2nd highest (377 yards against Pittsburgh in Super Bowl XLIII) and 3rd highest (365 yards against New England in Super Bowl XXXVI) passing yardage totals in Super Bowl history.

    Only quarterback to throw 400+ yards in a Super Bowl game
    Most touchdown passes in a single postseason – 11 touchdowns (in 2009, tied with Joe Montana in 1990 and Joe Flacco in 2013)

    Most yards passing in a single postseason, 3 games played – 1,063 yards (in 1999)

    Highest completion percentage in a single game (regular season)(min 20 attempts) – 92.3% (24/26) (9/20/09) [57] (Highest single game completion percentage – Tom Brady 92.9% (26/28) (1/12/08)

    Highest rate of games with 300+ yards passing (min. 100 games played) – 41.9% (52/124)

    Most consecutive games with 300+ yards passing – 6 games (tied with Steve Young and Rich Gannon)

    Most career games with a perfect passer rating (regular season) – 3 games (tied with Peyton Manning and Ben Roethlisberger)

    Fastest player to pass for 30,000 yards – 114 games (tied with Dan Marino)

    Fastest player to pass for 10,000 yards

    Only quarterback to throw for over 14,000 yards with two different teams (St. Louis Rams and Arizona Cardinals)

    Only quarterback to throw 40 touchdowns and win a Super Bowl in the same season (in 1999)

    Most yards passing in the first four games of a season – 1557 yards (2000)

    Most yards passing in the first five games of a season – 1947 yards (2000)

    Most yards passing in the first six games of a season – 2260 yards (2000)

    Highest average passing yards per game on Monday Night Football – 329.4 yards (min 7 games)

    Warner shares several records:

    One of 2 quarterbacks to throw 100 touchdown passes with two different teams (following Fran Tarkenton)
    One of 2 quarterbacks Tied to throw 5 touchdown passes in two different playoff games – (following Daryle Lamonica)
    One of 2 quarterbacks to complete 80% of his passes in two playoff games (tied with Tom Brady)
    One of 2 quarterbacks with 4 consecutive games with a passer rating over 120 (in 2009, tied with Johnny Unitas)
    One of 3 quarterbacks to make Super Bowl starts with two different teams – (with Craig Morton – Dallas Cowboys (in 1970) and Denver Broncos (in 1977) and Peyton Manning – Indianapolis Colts (in 2006 and 2009) and Denver Broncos (in 2013))
    One of 4 quarterbacks to win a Conference championship with two different teams (with Craig Morton and Earl Morrall and Peyton Manning)

    Warner also ranks second in several categories:

    2nd highest career completion percentage (Min. 1500 attempts) – 65.5 (Chad Pennington, 66.0)
    2nd highest career passing yards per game (Min. 100 games) – 260.4 yards/game (Peyton Manning is first)
    2nd highest career passing yards in Super Bowl history – 1,156 yards (Tom Brady, 1,277 yards)
    2nd highest career completion percentage, playoffs – 66.5 (Drew Brees, 66.7)
    2nd oldest quarterback to throw for 30 touchdowns in a season – aged 37 (in 2008) (Brett Favre, aged 40 (in 2009)

  82. “but a player with two regular-season MVP awards and a Super Bowl MVP award is probably going to end up in Canton.” Unless of course that player is named Terrell Davis and played in a small market. And what about Pat Bowlen?

  83. jdogg207 says: Aug 4, 2014 5:20 PM

    Zach Thomas was a better linebacker than Urlacher. Urlacher gets way too much hype because he played for the bears and did old spice commercials. He was above average at best. Zach Thomas was a 5th round pick that knocked out Shawn Jefferson so hard he was asking for his hs coach in his first game. I know Zach is borderline. Urlacher should at least be borderline as well. If he gets in first ballot then the entire process is a sham.

    First, I can’t imagine many OC’s who thought, “We have to game plan around Zach Thomas.” Urlacher on the other hand? Definitely.

    And I’ve never once seen ZT take a team on his shoulders and almost single-handedly WILL his team to victory by of leadership on play-making on the field…Urlacher, on the other hand, did it countless times.

    Remember that time in the NFC Championship game when Reggie Bush taunted Urlacher by pointing at him as he ran into the end zone? The whole game changed after that. Total 180. Urlacher willed that defense to dominate the 2nd half.

    And that famous “The Bears are Who we Thought They Are” Monday night game? – Bears vs. Cardinals: classic example of Urlacher taking charge and flipping the script to help will the team to victory. See his strip of Edgerrin James to spark the comeback.

    I could go on, and on.

    Zach Thomas? Solid, consistent player. But not nearly the kind of high-impact player and leader B.U. always was.

  84. I cannot believe that Kramer is not in. Jerry and Fuzzy Thurston were perhaps the greatest guard combo in the 1960’s. Remember Jerry threw the key block against the Cowboys Jethro Pugh on fourth and goal in the NFL title game in 1967. Jerry also kicked field goals- he kicked 3 against the Giants for a 16-7 victory in the NFL title game at Yankee Stadium in 1961. HE SHOULD BE IN AND IT IS A SIN HE IS NOT!

  85. “Call me biased but…Don Coryell was a pretty good HC, but he shouldn’t get into the HOF before Tom Flores who was the HC for 2 Super Bowl winners.”

    You can’t just count rings. Coryell was an innovator on offense, Coryell’s fingerprints are all over NFL offenses to this day. There are a number of great articles on the net about Coryell’s influence, do a quick web search and read up a bit. Dude turned around losing teams in St. Louis and San Diego, just never quite got to the top of the mountain.

    Meanwhile Dungy will get in because everyone likes him, he’s on TV all the time, and he’s the first African American to win the Super Bowl. But he could never get it done in Tampa, and got the gift of Peyton Manning, a weak division, and Rex Grossman as his Super Bowl opponent.

  86. “Don Coryell was a pretty good HC,”

    Don Coryell was at best an average head coach. He was a phenomenal innovator and offensive coordinator. You cannot be a great head coach by ignoring one half of your team. In every year his team was in the top 1/3 defensively (which is twice in his career), they got deep into the playoffs. All other times, they simply made the playoffs and nothing else because they had no defense. I can see Coryell getting in as a contributor, but as a head coach it is just too hard to ignore the lack of championships due to his ignoring the defense.

  87. how do we correct errors and remove non HOF level players from the HOF

    talking about you Troy Aikman and you Lynn Swann… and many of the vet picks, but I view them quite differently

  88. @Thomas I don’t think Coryell “ignored” the defensive side of the ball. They did after all have a defensive coordinator every year. Fact is he had playmakers on the offensive side of the ball, and not so much on the defensive side. The offense probably didn’t help the defense much because they scored so quickly. But yes, as a Chargers fan if they would have done a little more on defense who knows. They had a couple teams that were good enough, it just didn’t happen. The team that won the thriller in Miami only to lose the -59 game in Cincinnati had a pretty good shot, but they didn’t manage in the cold as well as the Bengals did. I love Coryell, I’d love to see him get his due, but I don’t know if it will happen. Most people don’t remember him or understand his contributions to the game.

  89. Coryell significantly better coach with far greater on-field contributions to game than Dungy who is also eligible

    and I go Coryell before a cheater like Belicheck down the road

  90. Not a fan for any team they ever played for, but TO deserves induction more than Bettis does.

  91. @Savage Lizard – I did an analysis on Coryall some years ago and if memory serves, Coryall only had a top five defense once (coincidentally, the year they went to the AFC championship in Cinncinati), a top 50% defenese a couple of times and the rest of his career, the defense ranked bottom *quarter* or worse. In addition, he had a bottom five defense on multiple occassions and the worst defense a couple of times and none of those were years where it was his first year at the team. At some point, one has to place the blame for the inbalance of the team on the head coach. Great head coaches win championships or, barring that, have teams that are consistently in the discussion for a championship. Coryell clearly added to the game, but on any metric on which we judge great head coaches, he fails to measure up. He had one great team and many better-than-average to mediocre teams. He clearly deserves to go into the HoF as a contributor but IMO, not as a head coach.

  92. Clam diggers says: Only Detroit has fewer playoff wins than the Vikes

    And yet, when I look up the records I found the Vikings have 19 total playoff wins. And I looked further……

    Eagles 19
    Rams 19
    Bears 17
    Ravens 14
    Bills 14
    Oilers/Titans 14
    Seahawks 12
    Jets 12
    Browns 11
    Chargers 11
    Chiefs 8
    Falcons 7
    Lions 7
    Saints 7
    Panthers 6
    Bengals 5
    Texans 2

    Sure about that?

  93. @Thomas I was a teenager back then, I didn’t pay as much attention as I do these days. I don’t know if it was Coryell or the GM/organization not providing the talent on the defensive side. Most head coaches don’t coach both sides of the ball, They are offensive guys or defensive guys, and they have a coordinator on the other side. Coryell is obviously an offensive guy.

  94. Six years ago, I predicted Warner would resurrect the Cardinals. I can barely wait to see him inducted. So much of my life has been covering and writing about these men. I always love it when the deserving men are inducted. I just wish the Hall of Fame would change a few things because there are things wrong with the process.

  95. If they put Dungy in ever it kind of makes you wonder what the old guys were like. Were they that mediocre?

    If your honestly going to try to leave TO out are you going to pretend that there was no football for 14 years? lol

    Same for Warner.

  96. With Ray Guy now in the HOF, the single biggest shaft job left to correct is to put Tommy Nobis in the Hall.

    Nobis was as good, if not better than any LB in his era. The guy was an amazing athlete. In a 1970 poll conducted by ABC the best athlete of the 1960’s was OJ Simpson, #2 was Tommy Nobis. In his rookie season, Nobis had [b]294 tackles[/b] and was named the NFL Rookie of the Year.

    Here are a few quotes about Nobis from former players/coaches

    •Dolphins running back Larry Csonka: “I’d rather play against Dick Butkus than Nobis.”
    •Cowboys legendary coach Tom Landry: “Nobis was as fast as most backs. In my opinion, he was a super player.”
    •Bears tight end Mike Ditka: “It was not one thing he did, it was everything he did. He was an old-fashioned linebacker. He didn’t call attention to himself. He went out and played it.”
    •Dan Reeves: “As a running back for eight seasons in the NFL, I certainly took my share of hits. Unfortunately I remember some of them, particularly the ones from Falcons linebacker Tommy Nobis. ‘Mr. Falcon,’ as he is known in this part of the country, should be considered a worthy candidate for the Hall of Fame.

    The only problem for Nobis, he played on the Falcons. If he had gone to Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, he would have been a 1st ballot HOF’er.

  97. Tomlinson and Bettis are the only Top ten RB not in the HOF

    Tomlinson gets in based on his 7 seasons of record breaking numbers.

    Bettis should get in based on the fact his numbers are better than Dickerson, Dorsett, Brown and Faulk.

    IN my Opinion Kurt warner has a hard time getting in. One super bowl 3 appearences and ranked 33rd on the all time passing list. Hell he is ranked below Vinny testicle, drew barrymore and chris everett.

    Kevin Greene getting passed over for gap tooth is embarrassing. he has 18 more sacks during the a career that spans the same time frame is wrong.

    Charles Haley ranks 28th on the list but has 5 super bowls he should be in soon.

    Ward should get based on what he did in crunch time aka playoffs. He ranks tied for 12th with 10 touchdowns in the playoffs and the of the 4 that he is tied with 3 are in the HOF and moss should get in.

  98. The Commissioner asked Jerry Kramer why he hasn’t shown up to the Hall of Fame appreciation ceremony with his fellow hall of famers…

    Jerry had to inform Goodell that he doesn’t go, because he isn’t a hall of famer.

    Think about that, an All Time Great has to utter the words, “I’m not a hall of famer.”

    smh… he deserves to get in.

  99. Some of you are missing a key point when you discuss QBs like Namath and Stabler. First off they played in an entirely different era. A 60% completion percentage was rare when they played due to the rules favoring the defense and the offenses that were mostly run first. QB ratings of 80+ were also very rare and over 90 was off the charts. Another saying you heard quite often when a QB threw a long interception, they used to say it was as good as a punt. Namath’s contributions go beyond what he accomplished as career numbers. He was the first QB to throw for 4000 yards in 1967. He was a cultural icon that gave swagger and legitamacy to a young AFL. He also had the “guarantee” that is one of the greatest moments in the NFL. As for Stabler, he was QB of the winningest team of the seventies and the most accurate QB of the seventies, he had an MVP award and won a super bowl. If he isn’t in, how do you explain Bob Griese, Griese never thru for more than 2500 yards in a season and in 7 of his 14 NFL seasons he threw for under 2000 yards. He was the consumate dink & plink game managing QB who made his career by handing the ball off to Csonk, Kiick and Mercury Morris. His career QB rating is also 77.1. Just saying that you can’t compare stats from QBs who played in the 60s and 70s to today’s pass happy NFL QBs like Manning, Brady etc… Different game.

  100. Both Bronco Superbowls are bullcrap. They cheated the cap rules to stack their defense and pay both Davis and Elway. Should have an asterisk by them in the books.

  101. thevikesarebest says:
    Aug 4, 2014 12:26 PM
    It will be nice when brett farve goes in with a Viking jersey on.#brettchoseminnyoverthecheeseheads.SKOL


    I cant wait to read about your disappointment.

  102. “but Owens acted like such a jerk, so often, that he’s remembered as much for becoming a disruptive force in the locker room as he is for being a dominant force on the field.”

    Wasn’t Favre a jerk too???

    Behavior and anything off the field are not allowed to be used as criteria per HOF VP Joe Horrigan.

    Being a jerk is behaving, albeit badly. A locker room is literally off a football field.

    That shouldn’t be used against Owens at all. He should get in without any of those aforementioned issues.

  103. IMO, of guys mentioned


    Seau, Sabol (s), Warner, Bruce, Coryell, Owens, TBrown, Hutchinson, Tomlinson, CHaley, RLewis, Moss, TGonz, EReed, MHarrison, Favre, CWoodson
    and TDavis and StSharpe and Kramer and Gradishar and Nobis and CBranch (better than Swann or Stallworth)


    Bettis, Dungy, Atwater, Fletcher, HWard, Holt, KGreen, JTaylor, GYoung, Kuechenberg, EJames, ZThomas, CHarris, Belichek, Bowlen,TLaw, RCunningham (though think he would be if he was used/coached better), Holmgrin, Vermeil, Flores, Lynch, Milloy, McNabb, Plunket, Bruschi…..


    Pace, Dawkins, Urlacher, Shields, Stabler (much better than Aikman), MAnderson, Tagliabue, Modell, DeBartalo, Marshall, RodSmith, Otis Taylor (if not in), RBarber, RHarrison

  104. It shouldn’t even be up for debate that Brian Dawkins should be first ballot Hall of Famer. There’s not another player in the league besides Ray Lewis that had brought more passion and more intensity to the game every single week then Brian Dawkins did. He was an unstoppable force and safety and in my opinion, one of the best ever to play the position not to mention defense as well as arguably the hardest hitting most fearful safety that ever played the game.

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