While the NFL playoff race heats up, another race is well under way. The NFL announced a list 27 semifinalists for the Hall of Fame Class of 2013, a list headlined by six players making their first appearance on the ballot.
Former Buccaneers duo of terror John Lynch and Warren Sapp are among those six newbies to the list, along with Michael Strahan, Ravens offensive line rock Jonathan Ogden, guard Larry Allen and kicker Morten Anderson.
Interestingly enough, the Hall usually only nominates 25 semifinalists, but because of a three-way tie for 25th and final spot, the Hall has allowed an amendment as to include the other two members who received nomination.
Safety Steve Atwater, coach Don Coryell, running backs Roger Craig and Terrell Davis, tackle Joe Jacoby, linebacker Karl Mecklenburg, owner Art Modell, former commissioner Paul Tagliabue, special teamer Steve Tasker and executive George Young all missed the final cut last year but have made the cut on the semifinalist list.
As for guys who didn’t make it past the semifinal round of voting, running back Jerome Bettis, wide receivers Tim Brown, Cris Carter and Andre Reed, guard Will Shields, defensive end Charles Haley, linebacker Kevin Greene, cornerback Aeneas Williams along with Bill Parcells and former 49ers owner Ed DeBartolo, Jr.
The list will be whittled down to 15 finalists in January and then again trimmed down to the final class later in the year.