Wednesday, January 10, 2007
By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
No Steelers player made the cut of the final 15 modern era finalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but one Steelers coach did.
Russ Grimm, an NFL all-1980s guard with the Washington Redskins, was named a finalist for the third straight year. Last year, he reached the final 10.
Grimm is the only member of the famed Hogs offensive line that helped deliver three Redskins Super Bowl victories.
Of particular disappointment to the Steelers is that their former center Dermontti Dawson did not reach the final 17, which includes two senior candidates. He was a semifinalist for the second time in his second year of eligibility.
The Hall of Fame board of selectors will meet Feb. 3 in Miami to select the 2007 class that will contain a minimum of three and a maximum of six.
The 17 finalists:
Fred Dean -- Defensive End -- 1975-1985 San Diego Chargers, San Francisco 49ers
Richard Dent -- Defensive End -- 1983-1997, Chicago Bears, 49ers, Indianapolis Colts, Philadelphia Eagles
Russ Grimm -- Guard -- 1981-1991 Washington Redskins
Ray Guy -- Punter -- 1973-1986 Oakland/Los Angeles Raiders
Gene Hickerson -- Guard -- 1958-1973 Cleveland Browns
Michael Irvin -- Wide Receiver -- 1988-1999 Dallas Cowboys
Bob Kuechenberg -- Guard -- 1970-1984 Miami Dolphins
Bruce Matthews -- Guard, Tackle, Center -- 1983-2001 Houston Oilers/Tennessee Oilers/Titans
Art Monk -- Wide Receiver -- 1980-1995 Redskins, New York Jets, Eagles
Andre Reed -- Wide Receiver -- 1985-2000 Buffalo Bills, Redskins
Charlie Sanders -- Tight End -- 1968-1977 Detroit Lions
Paul Tagliabue -- NFL Commissioner -- 1989-2006
Derrick Thomas -- Linebacker -- 1989-1999 Kansas City Chiefs
Thurman Thomas -- Running Back -- 1988-2000 Bills, Dolphins
Andre Tippett -- Linebacker -- 1982-1993 New England Patriots
Roger Wehrli -- Cornerback -- 1969-1982 St. Louis Cardinals
Gary Zimmerman -- Tackle -- 1986-1997 Minnesota Vikings, Denver Broncos