Former Bengals lineman among 2024 Pro Football Hall of Fame semifinalists

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Former longtime Cincinnati Bengals offensive tackle Willie Anderson was named Tuesday morning a semifinalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2024.

Anderson is among 25 modern-era players considered for next year’s class. This is Anderson’s fourth time as a semifinalist. He was a finalist in 2023 and 2022.

A member of the Bengals Ring of Honor, Anderson played for Cincinnati from 1996 to 2007. He played for the Baltimore Ravens in 2008.

He is one of two offensive linemen who are semifinalists for the 2024 class. Former New Orleans and Green Bay guard Jahri Evans is a semifinalist for a second straight year.

Anderson, drafted No. 10 in 1996, was a four-time Pro Bowl selection and three-time All-Pro player. He started 184 of 195 games in his career.

The list of semifinalists, which was announced live this morning on NFL Network, was reduced from an initial group of 173 nominees in September.

Tight end Antonio Gates and defensive end Julius Peppers made the cut to semifinalists in their first year of eligibility. Both last played in the 2018 season. One other player reached the semifinalist stage for the first time: Tiki Barber, who retired following the 2006 season.

The next step in the selection process occurs when the list to trimmed to 15 Modern Era finalists. That list increases to 19 finalists overall with the inclusion of the recommended nominees of the Hall of Fame’s Coach/Contributor Committee, Buddy Parker; and its Seniors Committee, Randy Gradishar, Steve McMichael and Art Powell.

The Hall of Fame’s 50-person selection committee will select the Class of 2024 in advance of Super Bowl LVIII in Las Vegas.

The class will be announced live on the “NFL Honors” telecast scheduled to air Feb. 8. While there is no set number for any class of inductees, the bylaws for the selection committee provide that between four and nine new members will be selected.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2024 will be enshrined next August, with the likely date being Aug. 3.

(WCPO is a news partner of Cox First Media).

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