Former Saints Offensive Tackle Willie Roaf was named one of the 15 modern-era finalists who will be considered for election to the Pro Football Hall of Fame when the Hall's Selection Committee meets in Indianapolis, Ind. on Saturday, Feb. 4, 2012, the Hall of Fame announced Saturday.
If Roaf gets he would join Jim Finks and Rickey Jackson to become only the third longtime member of the New Orleans Saints elected to the Hall of Fame.
The Pro Football Hall of Fame Selection Committee's 17 finalists (15 modern-era and two senior nominees*) with their positions, teams, and years active follow:
*Jerome Bettis – Running Back – 1993-95 Los Angeles/St. Louis Rams, 1996-2005 Pittsburgh Steelers
*Tim Brown – Wide Receiver/Kick Returner – 1988-2003 Los Angeles/Oakland Raiders, 2004 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Jack Butler – Cornerback – 1951-59 Pittsburgh Steelers
*Cris Carter – Wide Receiver – 1987-89 Philadelphia Eagles, 1990-2001 Minnesota Vikings, 2002 Miami Dolphins
*Dermontti Dawson – Center – 1988-2000 Pittsburgh Steelers
*Edward DeBartolo, Jr. – Owner – 1977-2000 San Francisco 49ers
*Chris Doleman – Defensive End/Linebacker – 1985-1993, 1999 Minnesota Vikings, 1994-95 Atlanta Falcons, 1996-98 San Francisco 49ers
*Kevin Greene – Linebacker/Defensive End – 1985-1992 Los Angeles Rams, 1993-95 Pittsburgh Steelers, 1996, 1998-99 Carolina Panthers, 1997 San Francisco 49ers
*Charles Haley – Defensive End/Linebacker – 1986-1991, 1999 San Francisco 49ers, 1992-96 Dallas Cowboys
*Cortez Kennedy – Defensive Tackle – 1990-2000 Seattle Seahawks
*Curtis Martin – Running Back – 1995-97 New England Patriots, 1998-2005 New York Jets
*Bill Parcells – Coach – 1983-1990 New York Giants, 1993-96 New England Patriots, 1997-99 New York Jets, 2003-06 Dallas Cowboys
*Andre Reed – Wide Receiver – 1985-1999 Buffalo Bills, 2000 Washington Redskins
*Willie Roaf – Tackle – 1993-2001 New Orleans Saints, 2002-05 Kansas City Chiefs
*Will Shields – Guard – 1993-2006 Kansas City Chiefs
Dick Stanfel – Guard – 1952-55 Detroit Lions, 1956-58 Washington Redskins
*Aeneas Williams – Cornerback/Safety – 1991-2000 Phoenix/Arizona Cardinals, 2001-04 St. Louis Rams
In addition to Parcells, other finalists who have been eligible in previous years include Bettis, Brown, Carter, Dawson, Doleman, Haley, Kennedy, Martin, Reed, Roaf and Stanfel. Although they were eligible in previous years, this is the first time Butler, DeBartolo, Greene and Williams have been finalists.
From this year's list, four players – Butler, Dawson, Kennedy, and Shields spent their entire NFL career with just one team.
Butler and Stanfel were selected as senior candidates by the Hall of Fame's Seniors Committee at their August 2011 meeting. The Seniors Committee reviews the qualifications of those players whose careers took place more than 25 years ago. The remaining 15 modern-era finalists were determined by a vote of the Hall's 44-member Selection Committee from a list of 105 preliminary nominees that earlier was reduced to a list of 26 semifinalists.
To be eligible for election, modern-era players and coaches must be retired at least five consecutive seasons. Contributors need not be retired.
Doleman, Greene, and Haley have been eligible for eight years. Dawson, Kennedy, and Reed have each been eligible for election for seven years, Carter five years, and Brown and Williams three years. Bettis, Martin and Roaf are in their second year of eligibility. Since the retirement minimum for a player prior to 1968 was three years, senior nominees Butler and Stanfel have been eligible since 1963 when the Hall of Fame first opened.
The Selection Committee will meet in Indianapolis, Ind. on Saturday, February 4, 2012, to elect the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2012. The election results will be announced at 5:30 p.m. ET during a one-hour NFL Network special, live from the Super Bowl Media Center. The Class of 2012 will be the 50th class to be elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
At the 2012 selection meeting, the selectors will thoroughly discuss the careers of each finalist. Although there is no set number for any class of enshrinees, the Pro Football Hall of Fame's current ground rules stipulate that between four and seven new members will be selected each year. No more than five modern-era nominees can be elected in a given year and a class of six or seven can only be achieved if one or both senior nominees are elected. Representatives of the accounting firm Deloitte & Touche will tabulate all votes during the meeting.
At the announcement, Pro Football Hall of Fame President/Executive Director Steve Perry will be presented with an envelope containing the names of the nominees elected. Each newly elected member will be contacted immediately by the Hall of Fame. Members of the Class of 2012 in Indianapolis for the Super Bowl will be asked to join the live announcement show. Those not able to attend will be asked to join via teleconference.
Notes on Roaf:
Tackle … 6-5, 300 … Louisiana Tech … 1993-2001 New Orleans Saints, 2002-05 Kansas City Chiefs … 13 seasons, 189 games … Selected by New Orleans in 1st round (8th player overall) of 1993 draft … First offensive lineman selected … Started all 16 games at right tackle, did not miss offensive snap during first season earning All-Rookie honors ... Following year switched to left tackle and was voted to first of 11 Pro Bowls, named first-team All-Pro, All-NFC, and NFLPA's NFC Offensive Lineman of the Year for first of two consecutive seasons ... Played nine seasons in New Orleans, starting 131 regular season games … Also started two playoff games including franchise's first-ever postseason win, a 31-28 victory over defending Super Bowl champion St. Louis Rams in 2000 NFC Wild Card Game … Knee injury shortened 2001 season to just seven games … Traded by the Saints to Chiefs in exchange for a third-round draft pick ... Rebounded from injury to regain form and earned All-Pro honors in three of four seasons with Chiefs … Was a key part of Kansas City's offensive line that helped Chiefs lead NFL in points scored in 2002, 2003 ... Team also led AFC in total yards in 2003 and NFL in 2004, 2005 … Was named first-team All-Pro seven times (1994-96, 2000, 2003-05), All-NFC six times, and All-AFC three times … A member of the NFL's All-Decade Team of the 1990s … Born April 18, 1970 in Pine Bluff, Arkansas.