Hall of Fame Announces 2019 Finalists

On Thursday evening, the Pro Football Hall of Fame announced the 15 finalists for the 2019 class. Ed Reed, Tony Gonzalez, and Champ Bailey were obvious first-ballot choices to reach this point. Richard Seymour is a finalist for the first time. Head coach Tom Flores also made the cut on his final ballot while linebacker Karl Mecklenburg did not. Eleven of the 15 finalists I predicted in August made the cut.

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23 comments, Last at 08 Jan 2019, 7:51am

#1 by MC2 // Jan 04, 2019 - 12:56am

My picks would be Bailey, Gonzalez, Reed, Atwater and ... Seymour?

The first 3 are obvious, and I've been pounding the table for Atwater for years now.

The last one was tough, but it seems like those early NE teams (that won 3 of 4 SBs) should be represented by someone besides Brady, Belichick, and a freakin' kicker. Compared to Law, Seymour has more All-Pro's (3 to 2), more Pro Bowl's (7 to 5), and a higher Weighted Career AV (90 to 85), so he gets the nod.

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#3 by Yu Narukami // Jan 04, 2019 - 2:20am

Seymour is also in the Official (selected by the HOF committee) NFL 2000's All-Decade First Team along with Brady, Belichick and Vinatieri; while Ty Law is in the Second Team.

I also want to use this space to suggest Scott or whoever FO guy to write an article during this year, guessing the 2010s Team (which should probably be announced during the Pro Bowl for the 2019 season).

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#6 by RickD // Jan 04, 2019 - 9:17am

At the time, Seymour was generally considered the best player on the Pats' D. If Law has to wait in the CB queue behind Bailey, I could see Seymour getting in before him.

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#2 by Megamanic // Jan 04, 2019 - 1:37am

Eligible or not, Coryell needs to be in based on how he pretty much invented the modern passing game by evolving what Sid Gilman taught him

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#4 by Bright Blue Shorts // Jan 04, 2019 - 4:25am

Nice to remember someone like Tom Flores ... but honestly ... I'd put George Seifert in ahead of him. And I wouldn't put Seifert in.

Similar careers in taking over a team that had already been successful and picking up two Lombardis ... then going to another franchise and seeing their reputation damned forever.

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#21 by bachslunch // Jan 07, 2019 - 5:29pm

Agreed. Tom Flores shouldn’t get into the PFHoF without a ticket. 97-87 with 2 SB wins doesn’t cut it for me, sorry.

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#5 by Damon // Jan 04, 2019 - 6:21am

I feel bad for saying this, but compared to the 2018 class, the 2019 class is a let down.

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#8 by andrew // Jan 04, 2019 - 9:49am

While its hard to compete with Moss and Owens not to mention Lewis, that could be said about many classes.

We have in my mind the greatest safety to every play the game (Reed, who I rank above even Lott, Wilson, Palamalu... can't think of another safety that had a bigger impact on the game. That's not too shabby. And you could make the same case for Tony Gonzalez.

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#7 by RickD // Jan 04, 2019 - 9:23am

Mostly agree with Scott's picks (even though the homer in me would put Law in ahead of Bailey). But I don't see two linemen getting in at the same time. And, really, Boselli had a very short career for a Hall of Famer. (Please, nobody bring up Gale Sayers.)

I could see Hutch getting in and the fifth could be anybody, really. Certainly Seymour has a stronger resume than Boselli, but maybe Coryell finally gets his due?

The Flores vs. Coryell debate is fascinating. Coryell was more innovative, but Flores was far more successful in the playoffs. I'm guessing they've been advancing together because the room didn't want to elevate one ahead of the other.

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#9 by Bright Blue Shorts // Jan 04, 2019 - 10:47am

"And, really, Boselli had a very short career for a Hall of Famer. (Please, nobody bring up Gale Sayers.)"

Terrell Davis got in a couple of years ago off a 78-game career that I believe ran simultaneously to Boselli from1995-2001. Technically Boselli lasted a year longer but he never played in 2002 with the Texans. I suspect a hobbling Boselli would have been an upgrade for David Carr that year.

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#13 by Richie // Jan 04, 2019 - 3:24pm

Davis got in because he was a key component to a 2-time Super Bowl winning team. Unfortunately, Boselli never even made it to a Super Bowl.

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#16 by Aaron Brooks G… // Jan 04, 2019 - 10:54pm

We'll remember not to bring up Sayers when Gronkowski come around.

Boselli only started half a season fewer game.

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#19 by RickD // Jan 07, 2019 - 2:47pm

Gale Sayers played in 68 games in his career.
Boselli played in 91 games in his career.
Gronk has played in 115 games and has not retired yet.

There are a lot of good linemen who have much, much longer careers than Boselli. Alan Faneca played in 206 games. Steve Hutchinson played in 169 games.

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#10 by theslothook // Jan 04, 2019 - 1:17pm

If you look over the Patriots run during the 2000s, despite the first half being about defense - they are remarkably short on hall of famers, or even hall of very good players. How many players on their run are even within sniffing distance of the hall of fame and how many spanned a long length of time in a Patriots Uniform? Richard Seymore might be the only one as Ty Law was done by 2004 and Harrison didn't get there till 2003.

Maybe it was Belichick magic beans, but it strikes me that so much of the Patriots defensive success came down to having a lot of solid to good players.

How the Patriots with an injured no name secondary in 2004 managed to still be good on defense is one of the great mysteries for me. I remember Jerry Rice saying, "the day a team puts a wide receiver to cover me and I don't light them up is the day I retire for good"

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#12 by BJR // Jan 04, 2019 - 3:20pm

Besides Law and Seymour, McGinest and Harrison were probably the definition of a 'hall of very good' players. Asante Samuel played in 2004 and was a no-name at the time, but went on to have a very good career. They clearly weren't littered with Hall of Famers like the '85 Bears, the '02 Bucs, or the '14 Seahawks, but I'd say there was considerable talent there.

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#14 by Richie // Jan 04, 2019 - 3:25pm

I think this is a huge reason why the Patriots have been good for so long. They have built a deep team that is able to withstand injuries. Along with having a great QB who doesn't get hurt. So many other teams invest a lot of money in a few players, and if a few of them get hurt, the season goes down the drain.

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#11 by Joseph // Jan 04, 2019 - 1:55pm

My opinion, for what it's worth:

Ed Reed, Champ Bailey, Tony Gonzalez are no-brainers; Hutch should be in too, and then the 5th is ?? The only thought for me is that somebody in the room has been arguing for a couple of the guys that others would consider "no's" or borderline, so maybe a Coryell or Flores gets in (or whoever you feel is the worst finalist). For me, Faneca, Edge, Isaac Bruce, or Coryell all deserve it.

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#15 by Will Allen // Jan 04, 2019 - 3:52pm

Jerry Jones is in the Hall of Fame. Chuck Howley is not.

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#22 by bachslunch // Jan 07, 2019 - 5:37pm

Sorry to say, this ends Karl Mecklenburg’s regular candidacy. He and his 4/6/none honors profile drop into the Senior abyss. I think he has a decent case, myself, as does Sam Mills (3/5/none), both being the best MLBs/ILBs not in from the 80s-90s (only Mike Singletary and Harry Carson represent the position in the HoF from that time period).

The finalists are all pretty reasonable options except for Tom Flores. I think all the rest belong in.

As for who actually gets in, am guessing Tony Gonzalez, Champ Bailey, and Ed Reed are the locks. After that, am guessing Tony Boselli and Kevin Mawae. But we’ll see.

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