Former Falcons coach Dan Reeves, six former Falcons and four former Georgia Bulldogs are in the group of 108 modern-era nominees for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s class of 2018, which was released Tuesday.
Reeves was the first coach to guide the Falcons to the Super Bowl back in 1999. He also took Denver to three Super Bowls and is in their Ring of Fame.
The former Falcons include guard/tackle Bill Fralic (1985-1992), guard/tackle Chris Hinton (1990-93), left tackle Mike Kenn (1978-94), linebacker Cornelius Bennett (1996-98), linebacker Darryl Talley (1995) and linebacker Clay Matthews (1994-96). Kenn and Fralic were long-time Falcons, while the others came later in their careers after starring with other teams.
Current Falcons defensive line coach Bryant Young, a former defensive tackle with the San Francisco 49ers, is also a nominee.
The Georgia contingent is led by running back and kickoff returner Herschel Walker, wide receiver Hines Ward and defensive tackle Richard Seymour, who’s in his first year of eligibility. Former Bulldogs center Ray Donaldson also is on the list.
Former Indianapolis center Jeff Saturday, who played at old Shamrock High, is on the list in his first year of eligibility.
Other players from Georgia include former Green Bay wide receiver Sterling Sharpe (Glennville High), running back Earnest Byner (Baldwin High) and center Kevin Mawae, who was born in Savannah.
Offensive lineman Willie Anderson is a nominee. His son plays for Georgia Tech.
Eighteen finalists will be presented to the full 48-member Pro Football Hall of Fame selection committee during its annual meeting Saturday, Feb. 3, 2018, the day before Super Bowl LII in Minneapolis, Minn.
The final group will consist of 15 modern-era finalists, the recently named senior finalists, Robert Brazile and Jerry Kramer and contributor finalist Bobby Beathard.
While there is no set number for any class of enshrinees, the selection process by-laws provide that between four and eight new members will be selected.
The Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2018 will be formally enshrined next August in Canton, Ohio.
For the seventh consecutive year, fans can vote for their favorite Pro Football Hall of Fame nominees. Fans should visit www.nfl.com/hofvote to make their picks.
The roster of nominees consists of 53 offensive players, 38 defensive players, five special teams players and 12 coaches. The modern-era nominees will be reduced to 25 semifinalists in November and, from there, to 15 finalists in January.
MODERN-ERA NOMINEES FOR THE
PRO FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME CLASS OF 2018
*Finalist in 2017; Underline indicates first year of eligibility (Players and coaches must have last played or coached at least five full seasons to be eligible for nomination. Therefore, any individual who last played or coached in 2012 are eligible for the first time in 2018).
QUARTERBACKS (5) – Randall Cunningham, Rich Gannon, Donovan McNabb, Steve McNair, Phil Simms
RUNNING BACKS (10) – Tiki Barber, Earnest Byner, Roger Craig, Corey Dillon, Eddie George, Edgerrin James, Lorenzo Neal, Fred Taylor, Herschel Walker (also KR), Ricky Watters
(13) – *Isaac Bruce, Donald Driver, Henry Ellard (also PR), Torry Holt, Chad Johnson, Randy Moss, *Terrell Owens, Sterling Sharpe, Jimmy Smith, Rod Smith, Steve Smith, John Taylor, Hines Ward
(4) – Mark Bavaro, Ben Coates, Ferrell Edmunds, Jay Novacek
OFFENSIVE LINEMEN(21) – Willie Anderson (T), Matt Birk (C), *Tony Boselli (T), Lomas Brown (T), Ruben Brown (G), Ray Donaldson (C), *Alan Faneca (G), Bill Fralic (G/T), Jay Hilgenberg (C), Chris Hinton (G/T), Kent Hull (C), Steve Hutchinson (G), *Joe Jacoby (T), Mike Kenn (T), *Kevin Mawae (C/G), Tom Nalen (C), Nate Newton (G), Bart Oates (C), Jeff Saturday (C), Richmond Webb (T), Steve Wisniewski (G)
DEFENSIVE LINEMEN (11) – La’Roi Glover (DT/NT), Leonard Marshall (DE/DT), Keith Millard (DT/NT/DE), Leslie O’Neal (DE), Michael Dean Perry (DT/DE), Simeon Rice (DE), Richard Seymour (DT), Neil Smith (DE), Greg Townsend (DE/NT/LB), Kyle Vanden Bosch (DE), Bryant Young (DT)
(15) – Carl Banks, Cornelius Bennett, Tedy Bruschi, Seth Joyner, Ray Lewis, Greg Lloyd, Wilber Marshall, Clay Matthews, Willie McGinest (also DE), Karl Mecklenburg, Sam Mills, Joey Porter, Darryl Talley, Zach Thomas, Brian Urlacher
(12) – Eric Allen (CB), Steve Atwater (S), Ronde Barber (CB/S), LeRoy Butler (S), *Brian Dawkins (SS), Rodney Harrison (S), *Ty Law (CB), Albert Lewis (CB), *John Lynch (S), Dennis Smith (S), Everson Walls (CB), Darren Woodson (S)
(3) – Gary Anderson (K), Sean Landeta (P), Nick Lowery (K)
(2) – Brian Mitchell (KR/PR also RB), Steve Tasker (ST also WR)
(12) – *Don Coryell, Bill Cowher, Tom Flores, Mike Holmgren, Jimmy Johnson, Chuck Knox, Buddy Parker, Richie Petitbon, Dan Reeves, Marty Schottenheimer,
Clark Shaughnessy, Dick Vermeil