The Pro Football Hall of Fame has announced a list of 28 semi-finalists who will continue to be considered for election to the Hall next year.
The group includes five candidates who are in their first year of eligibility. Cornerback Darrell Revis, tackle Joe Thomasdefenseman Dwight Freeney, linebacker James Harrison and defenseman Jari Evans made it through the round.
Nineteen players are returning to the roster after last year’s semi-finalists. Wide receiver Henry Ellard and midfielder London Fletcher reached the semi-finals for the first time. Safety Rodney Harrison is returning after being a semi-finalist in the 2021 election, while defenseman Albert Lewis is a semi-finalist for the first time since 2013. This is the last year that Ellard and Lewis are eligible as modern era candidates.
Other semi-finalists: cornerback Eric Allen, cornerback Jared Allen, tackle Willie Anderson, cornerback Rhond Barber, wide receiver Anquan Boldin, returner Devin Hester, wide receiver Torrey Holt, wide receiver Andre Johnson, wide rusher Robert Mathis, wide receiver Steve. Smith, running back Fred Taylor, linebacker Zach Thomas, wide receiver Hines Ward, winger DeMarcus Ware, running back Ricky Watters, wide receiver Reggie Wayne, defenseman Vince Wilfork, linebacker Patrick Willis and defenseman Darren Woodson.
The group will be narrowed down to 15 finalists before a final vote for next year’s class takes place. After a vote by the Hall selection committee, this group is reduced to 10 players, a final vote is taken, and a maximum of five players can be elected with at least 80 percent of those votes.