2018 NFL Hall of Fame: Who Might Be In Canton?
A worthy class awaits.
The 2017 NFL Hall of Fame induction ceremony took place last night in Canton, Ohio. It’s still not too soon to wonder who might land in the 2018 NFL Hall of Fame class.
Professional football’s highest honor comes to those with exemplary careers in the game. In 2018, you will see a class of men that made a huge mark. Because there were so many of them makes this question a competitive one.
Keep in mind that nominations are still in the works. We will not know the 2018 class until around Super Bowl LII. Between four and eight will gain entry to the Hall. Based on what we know of who’s eligible, who can look forward to a phone call?
2018 NFL Hall of Fame Candidates: Ray Lewis, LB
Baltimore Ravens (1996-2012)
Stats: 228 games, 41.5 sacks, 2,055 tackles, 31 INT
Ray Lewis spent his entire NFL career in Baltimore, and 13 Pro Bowls and two Super Bowls later, he’s getting in the Hall. It’s a matter of when, not if, and probably 2018.
As a linebacker, Lewis was a beast anchoring Baltimore’s defense. He was the emotional leader of his team as well, and it didn’t hurt that he was a very good player. On the field, he led by example, and it’s hard to argue with his importance to the Ravens and the NFL.
2018 NFL Hall of Fame Candidates: Terrell Owens, WR
49ers, Eagles, Cowboys, Bills, Bengals (1996-2010)
Stats: 219 games, 1,078 rec, 15,934 yd, 153 TD
TO may ultimately be remembered for his antics about as much as his performance on the field. Since, however, the Hall of Fame doesn’t care so much about the antics, this is an easy call. Owens is the guy who pulled a Sharpie out of his sock to sign an autograph, struck a pose on the Dallas star (before he played for them), and broke into tears speaking of Tony Romo.
Yet, this six-time Pro Bowler also came near the top of the list in many receiving categories. He’s third all-time in touchdown catches and second in receiving yards. Sharpie or not, someone that good isn’t getting left out of the Hall.
2018 NFL Hall of Fame Candidates: Brian Dawkins, DB
Eagles, Broncos (1996-2011)
Stats: 224 games, 37 INT, 1,131 tackles, 36 FF
Perhaps a bit of a reach but Dawkins, who made the Pro Bowl nine times, was a game changer in the secondary.
Brian Dawkins played all but the last few years of his career with the Philadelphia Eagles. His play at safety helped the Eagles defense tremendously over the years, including their run of NFC championship appearances. Without question, he was the best player at his position in his prime.
Dawkins just missed in 2017, but he’s not likely to wait much longer.
2018 NFL Hall of Fame Candidates: Randy Moss, WR
Vikings, Raiders, Patriots, Titans, 49ers (1998-2010, 2012)
Stats: 218 games, 982 rec, 15,292 yd, 156 TD
Vikings fans will be over the moon if Moss gets into the Hall on his first try. It could happen for the six-time Pro Bowler.
Moss will eventually get into the Hall of Fame; we just happen to think it’ll be 2018. He is 15th on the all-time reception list, and second on the receiving touchdowns list behind Jerry Rice. His former teammate, Cris Carter, already got his call to Canton a few years ago.
There wasn’t a lot Moss couldn’t do on the field, except get a Super Bowl ring. Plenty of great players didn’t, either.
2018 NFL Hall of Fame Candidates: Brian Urlacher, LB
Chicago Bears (2000-2012)
Stats: 182 games, 41.5 sacks, 1,229 tackles, 22 INT
In his heyday, Brian Urlacher was one of the most feared defensive players in the NFL. Nobody wanted to play the Bears with him on the other side. That’s what helped him make the Pro Bowl eight times, and he played a role in the Bears getting to Super Bowl XLI. Urlacher was one of eight Pro Bowlers on that team.
Since his retirement from the NFL, his most notable development is sprouting a head of hair. Yet, when he played, Urlacher was one ba(l)d dude on the football field.
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