The Class of 2017 consists of kicker Morten Andersen; running back Terrell Davis; safety Kenny Easley; owner, president and general manager Jerry Jones; defensive end Jason Taylor; running back LaDainian Tomlinson; and quarterback Kurt Warner.
"To say that I’m elated is an understatement," said Taylor, in a statement. "This whole experience has been humbling, but today, to get that knock on the door and be welcomed into the most sacred and prestigious fraternity in our game? I’m almost at a loss for words. And to share this moment with my sons has made me as proud and as honored as I’ve ever been. ‘Dad! You’re in the Hall of Fame!’ It just doesn’t get any better than that."
Several of the inductees have connections to Southern California, including UCLA's Easley and San Diego prep star Davis. Tomlinson played the majority of his career for the San Diego Chargers.
Notable among the snubs was wideout Terrell Owens.
The Class of 2017 will be formally enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday, Aug. 5. The Enshrinement Ceremony is held at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton as a part of the spectacular Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Week Powered by Johnson Controls that celebrates the newest enshrinees of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Today’s annual selection meeting was held inside the Super Bowl LI Media Center in downtown Houston and capped a year-round selection process. The newly elected Hall of Famers were chosen from a list of 18 finalists who had been determined earlier by the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Selection Committee.
The first order of business for the Selection Committee at today’s meeting was to discuss and debate the merits of the Senior Finalist, Easley. He was required to receive at least an 80 percent positive vote to earn election.
Next, the careers of Jones and Paul Tagliabue, this year’s Contributor Finalists, were reviewed. Like all other Finalists, the Contributor Finalists need a minimum 80 percent positive vote to be elected. Tagliabue did not receive the necessary 80 percent positive vote.
The Selection Committee then presented and reviewed the 15 Modern-Era Finalists that included two cut downs in the process. The first cut of finalists was from 15 to 10. The five eliminated from consideration at that point were Isaac Bruce, Don Coryell, Alan Faneca, Joe Jacoby, and Terrell Owens. The final 10 finalists were reduced to five. Removed at that point were Tony Boselli, Brian Dawkins, Ty Law, John Lynch, and Kevin Mawae.
The five remaining finalists – Andersen, Davis, Taylor, Tomlinson, and Warner – were then voted on individually and all five received the necessary 80 percent positive vote from the Selection Committee to be elected.
In other NFL news . . .
The Dallas Cowboys Offensive Line was named the Offensive Line of the Year at NFL Honors – a two-hour primetime awards show.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers wideout Mike Evans' one-handed catch during the Week 9 Tampa Bay Buccaneers-Atlanta Falcons game was named the Play of the Year.
By Staff of TheDailySportsHerald.com and news services