As Jerome Bettis heads toward Canton, he hopes one of his former linemen follows him next year.
Asked on a conference call today to name a teammate who he thinks should join him in the Hall of Fame, Bettis named guard Alan Faneca.
“He deserves to be in the Hall of Fame,” Bettis said of Faneca.
Faneca may not be the first name most fans would think of, but he should get strong consideration this year, his first year of eligibility. Faneca was long among the best guards in the NFL, a six-time first-team All-Pro and a nine-time Pro Bowler. He was one of the best offensive linemen of his generation.
Unfortunately, Faneca will have a hard time getting voted into the Hall of Fame next year. In 2016 there’s one lock, Brett Favre, and another first-year candidate who will get strong consideration in Terrell Owens. There are also a lot of strong holdovers who just missed getting voted into the Hall of Fame this year, including linebacker Kevin Greene, quarterback Kurt Warner, tackle Orlando Pace, wide receiver Marvin Harrison, kicker Morten Andersen, running back Terrell Davis, safety John Lynch and coaches Tony Dungy, Don Coryell and Jimmy Johnson. Only five of those candidates can make the Hall of Fame, which means Faneca probably won’t make the cut. Even though Bettis makes a good point that he’s deserving.