Saturday, February 6, 2010
Rice, Randle make initial Hall cut to five
By Mike Sando
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- Jerry Rice, Russ Grimm, John Randle, Emmitt Smith and Rickey Jackson made the list of five final candidates for enshrinement in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Of the five, only those receiving 80 percent approval from the committee will qualify for enshrinement. Those results are scheduled to be announced on NFL Network about 25 minutes into a program that begins at 5 p.m. ET.
Cortez Kennedy, Richard Dent, Dermontti Dawson, Andre Reed and Shannon Sharpe survived the cut from 15 to 10 finalists. Charles Haley, Roger Craig, Cris Carter, Don Coryell and Tim Brown were eliminated in the cut from 15 to 10 finalists.
The status of the two seniors-committee candidates, Dick LeBeau and Floyd Little, will be announced with the other enshrinees.
This was my first year as a voter. Rules prevent me from revealing which candidates received my votes. Rules also prevent me from disclosing specifics of conversations.
Kennedy, arguably the best defensive player in Seahawks history, took a step forward in the process by making the cut to 10. And if Randle is enshrined, Kennedy could emerge next year as the top defensive tackle eligible for consideration.
Rice's selection was a formality. Grimm's inclusion among the final five candidates marks a big step forward for him. Harry Carson once made the cut to five, but failed to receive the necessary 80 percent support, so nothing is final until the announcement is made. But it is looking pretty good for Grimm.
Carter took a step back by missing the cut to 10. Look for Kennedy, Dent, Dawson, Reed and Sharpe to receive strong consideration in 2011.