2022 Hall of Fame Semifinalists Announced
NFL Week 12 - The Hall of Fame has announced its 26 semifinalists for the Class of 2022. First-time eligible players include Anquan Boldin, Devin Hester, Andre Johnson, Robert Mathis, Steve Smith, DeMarcus Ware and Vince Wilfork.
It's an interesting class this year, in part because while there are quite a few interesting and worthy names, there doesn't seem to be any absolute must-haves first-time inductees; no Peyton Mannings or Calvin Johnsons among them. That may leave more room this year for some players who have been knocking on the door for years to finally get their due.
Devin Hester is the name likely to garner the most debate. He is (arguably) the best ever at what he did; the question is whether or not punt return magic alone is worthy of a spot in the Hall over a player who was on the field more, even if they weren't as splashy. There are solid arguments on both sides, so get ready for the Irrational Hester Versus Tony Boselli discussion thread!
Here is the full list of semifinalists. 15 of these players will move on to become finalists, along with coach Dick Vermeil, contributor Art McNally and senior nominee Cliff Branch.
- Eric Allen, CB – 1988-1994 Philadelphia Eagles, 1995-97 New Orleans Saints, 1998-2001 Oakland Raiders
- Jared Allen, DE – 2004-07 Kansas City Chiefs, 2008-2013 Minnesota Vikings, 2014-15 Chicago Bears, 2015 Carolina Panthers
- Willie Anderson, T – 1996-2007 Cincinnati Bengals, 2008 Baltimore Ravens
- Ronde Barber, CB-S – 1997-2012 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- Anquan Boldin, WR – 2003-09 Arizona Cardinals, 2010-12 Baltimore Ravens, 2013-15 San Francisco 49ers, 2016 Detroit Lions
- Tony Boselli, T – 1995-2001 Jacksonville Jaguars
- LeRoy Butler, S – 1990-2001 Green Bay Packers
- Eddie George, RB – 1996-2003 Houston Oilers/Tennessee Oilers-Titans, 2004 Dallas Cowboys
- Devin Hester, PR-KR-WR – 2006-2013 Chicago Bears, 2014-15 Atlanta Falcons, 2016 Baltimore Ravens
- Torry Holt, WR – 1999-2008 St. Louis Rams, 2009 Jacksonville Jaguars
- Andre Johnson, WR – 2003-2014 Houston Texans, 2015 Indianapolis Colts, 2016, Tennessee Titans
- Robert Mathis, DE-LB – 2003-2016 Indianapolis Colts
- Sam Mills, LB – 1986-1994 New Orleans Saints, 1995-97 Carolina Panthers
- Richard Seymour, DE-DT – 2001-08 New England Patriots, 2009-2012 Oakland Raiders
- Steve Smith, WR – 2001-2013 Carolina Panthers, 2014-16 Baltimore Ravens
- Steve Tasker, ST-WR – 1985-86 Houston Oilers, 1986-1997 Buffalo Bills
- Fred Taylor, RB – 1998-2008 Jacksonville Jaguars, 2009-2010 New England Patriots
- Zach Thomas, LB – 1996-2007 Miami Dolphins, 2008 Dallas Cowboys
- Hines Ward, WR – 1998-2011 Pittsburgh Steelers
- DeMarcus Ware, LB-DE – 2005-2013 Dallas Cowboys, 2014-16 Denver Broncos
- Ricky Watters, RB – 1992-94 San Francisco 49ers, 1995-97 Philadelphia Eagles, 1998-2001 Seattle Seahawks
- Reggie Wayne, WR – 2001-2014 Indianapolis Colts
- Vince Wilfork, DT – 2004-2014 New England Patriots, 2015-16 Houston Texans
- Patrick Willis, LB – 2007-2014 San Francisco 49ers
- Darren Woodson, S – 1992-2003 Dallas Cowboys
- Bryant Young, DT – 1994-2007 San Francisco 49ers
Next year's new enshrinees will be announced on February 10, 2022.