Potential Pro Football Hall of Fame class of 2023: Darrelle Revis, Torry Holt headline possible inductees

The Pro Football Hall of Fame made the announcement on Tuesday 28 Modern Semifinalists for 2023 launch. The list of semi-finalists will be reduced to 15 finalists in January. The official induction class, which can include up to five modern finalists, will be announced prior to Super Bowl LVII.

Several semi-finalists, including Darrelle Revis and Joe Thomas, have a chance to be accepted in their first year of eligibility. Other players like Hines Ward, Torry Holt and Darren Woodson are hoping this is finally their year after being named semi-finalists again. As in most years, this is a hard-fought field of candidates, making the task of picking five for launch an unenviable task.

In August, the NFL named former defenseman Joe Klecko, cornerback Ken Riley, and linebacker Chuck Howley as that year’s senior finalists and former coach Don Coryell as the contributor finalist. Each finalist must receive 80% of the votes to be accepted.

So who will be in the introductory class next year? Let’s take a look at how it could potentially break out.

** denotes eligible players in the first year

Possible modern initiates

**CB Darrelle Revis (2007-17): “Revis Island” was anything but a vacation spot for NFL wideouts during his 10-year career. The seven-time Pro Bowler routinely suspended the league’s top receivers and made life miserable for quarterbacks. He helped New England weather the 10-year Super Bowl drought in 2014 after leading the Jets to back-to-back AFC title games in 2009-10.

**EDGE Dwight Freeney (2002-17): A menacing pass rusher armed with an unbeatable spin move. Has 125.5 sacks during his career, including 107.5 as a member of the Colts. Won a Super Bowl with Indianapolis in 2006 and helped the Cardinals reach the NFC Championship Game nine years later.

**OL Joe Thomas (2007-17): One of the greatest left tackles in NFL history, Thomas earned 10 straight Pro Bowl nominations when he was named to the NFL All-Decade Team for the 2010s. The NFL’s modern-day “Iron Man,” Thomas played in 167 games and amassed 10,363 consecutive snaps.

LB Zach Thomas (1996-08): A tackling machine, Thomas has accumulated seven Pro Bowl and five All-Pro nominations over a nine-year period. During his 13-year career, he had 1,734 tackles, 20.5 sacks, 17 interceptions (four returns for touchdowns), 16 forced fumbles and eight fumble recoveries.

Torry Holt (1999-09): Holt, a key member of the Rams’ “Greatest Show on Turf” offense, caught the first touchdown in the Rams’ Super Bowl win over the Titans. Holt enjoyed a long streak of statistical excellence that spanned eight straight 1,000-yard seasons. He led the NFL in receiving yards twice and once in receptions.

Possible high-level initiates

DL Joe Klecko (1977-88): The versatile lineman earned Pro Bowl nods in defensive end, defensive tackle and nose tackle. He led the NFL with 20.5 sacks in 1981 while serving as a valuable member of the Jets’ New York Sack Exchange defense.

LB Chuck Howley (1958-73): Howley, the only Super Bowl MVP from a losing team, made two passes in Dallas’ 16-13 loss to the Colts in Super Bowl V. He had another interception in Super Bowl VI as the Cowboys defeated the Dolphins to win their first Super Bowl. Howley was named to six Pro Bowls and was a five-time All-Pro.

CB Ken Riley (1970-83): A career Bengal, Riley’s 65 career interceptions are the fifth most in NFL history. In 1983, in his final season, Riley caught eight passes while scoring two league-high touchdowns. Riley would join Anthony Munoz as the only Bengalis anchored in Canton, Ohio.

Possible coach/contributor recruit

Don Coryell: Architect of the Air Coryell offense, the innovative coach helped modernize the passing game. Coryell led the Cardinals to three straight 10-win seasons before leading the Chargers to four straight playoff appearances. The Chargers offense remains one of the most prolific in league history, led by future Hall of Famers Dan Fouts, Kellen Winslow and Charlie Joiner.

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