CANTON, OHIO–*Six first-year eligible candidates – cornerback/safetyRonde Barber, guardSteve Hutchinson, linebackersRay LewisandBrian Urlacher, wide receiverRandy Mossand defensive end/defensive tackleRichard Seymour* – are among the 27 semifinalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame's Class of 2018.
Although Hall of Fame bylaws call for the selection of 25 semifinalists they also provide that the semifinalist list includes all ties for the twenty-fifth position, as has occurred this year with the total of 27 semifinalists
Four other players – safety LeRoy Butler, defensive ends Leslie O'Neal and Simeon Rice, and cornerback Everson Walls – although previously eligible for the Hall, are semifinalists for the first time. All other individuals on the 2018 list have been a semifinalist in previous years.* *
The Class of 2018 semifinalists includes 25 players – 12 on offense (RB=2; WR=5; OL=5); 13 on defense (DL=3; LB=3; DB=7), and two coaches.
The year-round selection process is integral in fulfilling the Pro Football Hall of Fame's important mission to "Honor the Heroes of the Game, Preserve its History, Promote its Values and Celebrate Excellence EVERYWHERE."
The following is the complete list of 2018 Modern-Era semifinalists, including their positions, years, and teams. Also listed are the number of times and years the individual has been named a semifinalist since this reduction vote was added to the Selection Committee Bylaws in 2004.
- Steve Atwater, S – 1989-1998 Denver Broncos, 1999 New York Jets | (Times as a Semifinalist: 7 – 2012-18)
- Ronde Barber, CB/S – 1997-2012 Tampa Bay Buccaneers | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
- Tony Boselli, T – 1995-2001 Jacksonville Jaguars, 2002 Houston Texans (injured reserve) | (Times as a Semifinalist: 3 – 2016-18)
- Isaac Bruce, WR – 1994-2007 Los Angeles/St. Louis Rams, 2008-09 San Francisco 49ers | (Times as a Semifinalist: 4 – 2015-18)
- LeRoy Butler, S – 1990-2001 Green Bay Packers | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
- Don Coryell, Coach – 1973-77 St. Louis Cardinals, 1978-1986 San Diego Chargers | (Times as a Semifinalist: 10 – 2005, 2010-18)
- Roger Craig, RB – 1983-1990 San Francisco 49ers, 1991 Los Angeles Raiders, 1992-93 Minnesota Vikings | (Times as a Semifinalist: 10 – 2009-18)
- Brian Dawkins,* *S – 1996-2008 Philadelphia Eagles, 2009-2011 Denver Broncos |* (Times as a Semifinalist: 2 – 2017-18)*
- Alan Faneca, G –*1998-2007 Pittsburgh Steelers, 2008-09 New York Jets, 2010 Arizona Cardinals | *(Times as a Semifinalist: 3 – 2016-18)
- Torry Holt, WR – 1999-2008 St. Louis Rams, 2009 Jacksonville Jaguars | (Times as a Semifinalist: 4 – 2015-18)
- Steve Hutchinson, G – 2001-05 Seattle Seahawks, 2006-2011 Minnesota Vikings, 2012 Tennessee Titans | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
- Joe Jacoby, T –* *1981-1993 Washington Redskins | (Times as a Semifinalist: 8 – 2005, 2008, 2013-18)
- Edgerrin James,* *RB – 1999-2005 Indianapolis Colts, 2006-08 Arizona Cardinals, 2009 Seattle Seahawks | (Times as a Semifinalist: 4 – 2015-18)
- Jimmy Johnson, Coach – 1989-1993 Dallas Cowboys, 1996-99 Miami Dolphins | (Times as a Semifinalist: 5 – 2014-18)
- Ty Law, CB – 1995-2004 New England Patriots, 2005, 2008 New York Jets, 2006-07 Kansas City Chiefs, 2009 Denver Broncos | (Times as a Semifinalist: 4 – 2015-18)
- Ray Lewis, LB – 1996-2012 Baltimore Ravens | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
- John Lynch, FS – 1993-2003 Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 2004-07 Denver Broncos | (Times as a Semifinalist: 6 – 2013-18)
- Kevin Mawae, C/G – 1994-97 Seattle Seahawks, 1998-2005 New York Jets, 2006-09 Tennessee Titans | (Times as a Semifinalist: 4 – 2015-18)
- Karl Mecklenburg, LB – 1983-1994 Denver Broncos | (Times as a Semifinalist: 7 – 2012-18)
- Randy Moss, WR – 1998-2004, 2010 Minnesota Vikings, 2005-06 Oakland Raiders, 2007-2010 New England Patriots, 2010 Tennessee Titans, 2012 San Francisco 49ers | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
- Leslie O'Neal, DE – 1986, 1988-1995 San Diego Chargers, 1996-1997 St. Louis Rams, 1998-1999 Kansas City Chiefs | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
- Terrell Owens, WR – 1996-2003 San Francisco 49ers, 2004-05 Philadelphia Eagles, 2006-08 Dallas Cowboys, 2009 Buffalo Bills, 2010 Cincinnati Bengals | (Times as a Semifinalist: 3 – 2016-18)
- Simeon Rice, DE – 1996-2000 Arizona Cardinals, 2001-06 Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 2007 Denver Broncos, 2007 Indianapolis Colts | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
- Richard Seymour, DE/DT – 2001-08 New England Patriots, 2009-2012 Oakland Raiders | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
- Brian Urlacher, LB – 2000-2012 Chicago Bears | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
- Everson Walls, CB – 1981-89 Dallas Cowboys, 1990-92 New York Giants, 1992-93 Cleveland Browns | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
- Hines Ward, WR* *– 1998-2011 Pittsburgh Steelers |* (Times as a Semifinalist: 2 – 2017-18)*
To be considered for election to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, a nominated player or coach must not have participated as an active player or coach for five consecutive seasons.
The list of semifinalists was reduced from an initial group of 108 nominees. The next step in the selection process comes in January when the semifinalists are trimmed to 15 Modern-Era Finalists. That list increases to 18 finalists with the inclusion of the recommended nominees of the Hall of Fame's Contributors and Seniors Committees. The 2018 Contributor Finalist is former General Manager/Personnel Administrator Bobby Beathard (1966-67 Kansas City Chiefs, 1968-1971 Atlanta Falcons, 1972-77 Miami Dolphins, 1978-1988 Washington Redskins, 1990-99 San Diego Chargers). The two Senior Finalists are Robert Brazile(LB – 1975-1984 Houston Oilers) and Jerry Kramer (G – 1958-1968 Green Bay Packers).
Beathard, Brazile and Kramer will be voted on separately and, like all other finalists, must receive 80% positive vote from the full Selection Committee on "Selection Saturday" at the annual selection meeting on Feb. 3, 2018 in Minneapolis, Minn., the day before Super Bowl LII.
The Pro Football Hall of Fame's current bylaws stipulate that between four and eight new members will be selected each year. No more than five Modern-Era Finalists can be elected in a given year. Therefore, a class of six, seven, or eight can only be achieved if one or more of the Contributor and Senior Finalists are elected.
The Pro Football Hall of Fame's Class of 2018 will be announced during NFL Honors, a two-hour primetime awards special to air nationally on the eve of the Super Bowl at
9 p.m. (ET and PT) on NBC. NFL Honors will be taped earlier that evening at the Cyrus Northrop Memorial Auditorium at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis from 5-7 p.m. (local) when the 2018 Hall of Fame class will be introduced for the first time. In addition, the NFL and The Associated Press will announce their annual accolades in this awards show with the winners on hand to accept their awards.
The Class of 2018 will be officially enshrined into the Hall of Fame during the spectacular Enshrinement Ceremony held inside Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton next August. The Enshrinement is the main event of the Pro Football Hall of Fame's Enshrinement Week Powered by Johnson Controls.