Ty Law and Richard Seymour have once again made the cut for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The former Patriots greats are on the list of 25 semifinalists for induction in the Hall’s 2019 class.
This marks the fifth time that Law has made the list of semifinalists, and the second appearance for Seymour after he made the list in 2018. Law has some competition for votes at his own position, with former Broncos and Redskins corner Champ Bailey making his first appearance. They’re joined by former Bucs cornerback Ronde Barber, who’s a semifinalist for the second straight year.
Seymour is the only defensive lineman on the list of semifinalists, which includes 13 total defensive players. Along with Law, he’d be the first player from the Patriots’ three Super Bowl championships in 2001 and 2003-04 to be enshrined at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton.
Contrasting Law’s five-year wait (at least) to get into the Hall, Bailey is likely to earn induction with ease in his first year of eligibility. He is widely considered one of the most dominant cornerbacks of his era, one of the only players one could argue was better than Law at the position during their careers.
There are two other first-timers on the ballot who are shoo-ins to get their bust in year one. Tight end Tony Gonzalez had one of the most prolific careers ever at the position, while former Ravens safety Ed Reed is generally considered the greatest of his generation and one of the best to ever play.
But in New England, all eyes will once again be on Law and Seymour to see if this is the year one of them finally breaks through. That’s especially true for Law, who’s been on the ballot since 2015. There’s a chance that Bailey overshadows him this year, but there would still be plenty of room for Law with the Hall of Fame committee generally sticking to around 4-8 inductees each year.
Both ex-Patriots certainly have the credentials as players. In addition to three Lombardi Trophies for each of them, Law was a two-time All-Pro and five-time Pro Bowler. Seymour was a three-time All-Pro and seven-time Pro Bowler himself.
Here’s the complete list of 25 semifinalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2019:
Tony Boselli, T (1995-2001 Jacksonville Jaguars, 2002 Houston Texans)
Isaac Bruce, WR (1994-2007 Los Angeles/St. Louis Rams, 2008-09 San Francisco 49ers)
Alan Faneca, G (1998-2007 Pittsburgh Steelers, 2008-09 New York Jets, 2010 Arizona Cardinals)
Tony Gonzalez, TE (1997-2008 Kansas City Chiefs, 2009-2013 Atlanta Falcons)
Torry Holt, WR (1999-2008 St. Louis Rams, 2009 Jacksonville Jaguars
Steve Hutchinson, G (2001-05 Seattle Seahawks, 2006-2011 Minnesota Vikings, 2012 Tennessee Titans)
Edgerrin James, RB (1999-2005 Indianapolis Colts, 2006-08 Arizona Cardinals, 2009 Seattle Seahawks
Kevin Mawae, C/G (1994-97 Seattle Seahawks, 1998-2005 New York Jets, 2006-09 Tennessee Titans)
Hines Ward, WR (1998-2011 Pittsburgh Steelers)
Steve Atwater, S (1989-1998 Denver Broncos, 1999 New York Jets)
Champ Bailey, CB (1999-2003 Washington Redskins, 2004-2013 Denver Broncos)
Ronde Barber, CB/S (1997-2012 Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
LeRoy Butler, S (1990-2001 Green Bay Packers)
Ty Law, CB (1995-2004 New England Patriots, 2005, 2008 New York Jets, 2006-07 Kansas City Chiefs, 2009 Denver Broncos)
John Lynch, FS (1993-2003 Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 2004-07 Denver Broncos)
Clay Matthews, LB (1978-1993 Cleveland Browns, 1994-96 Atlanta Falcons)
Karl Mecklenburg, LB (1983-1994 Denver Broncos)
Sam Mills, LB (1986-1994 New Orleans Saints, 1995-97 Carolina Panthers)
Ed Reed, FS (2002-2012 Baltimore Ravens, 2013 New York Jets, 2013 Houston Texans)
Richard Seymour, DE/DT (2001-08 New England Patriots, 2009-2012 Oakland Raiders)
Zach Thomas, LB (1996-2007 Miami Dolphins, 2008 Dallas Cowboys)
Darren Woodson, S (1992-2003 Dallas Cowboys)
Don Coryell, Coach (1973-77 St. Louis Cardinals, 1978-1986 San Diego Chargers)
Tom Flores, Coach (1979-1987 Oakland/Los Angeles Raiders, 1992-94 Seattle Seahawks)
Jimmy Johnson, Coach (1989-1993 Dallas Cowboys, 1996-99 Miami Dolphins)
Law made it to the list of finalists in 2018, so he’s certainly getting closer. Maybe this is the year for the former Patriot, who would have a chance to be enshrined alongside one of his peers in Bailey.
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