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Darrelle Revis, Dwight Freeney Headline 2023 Pro Football Hall of Fame Finalists

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 5, 2023

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 27:  Darrelle Revis #24 of the New York Jets reacts in the third quarter against the New England Patriots during their game at MetLife Stadium on December 27, 2015 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Al Bello/Getty Images

Darrelle Revis, Joe Thomas, Devin Hester, Andre Johnson, Reggie Wayne and Dwight Freeney are among the 15 modern-era players who are one step closer to being inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

The 15 modern-era finalists for the class of 2023 were announced Wednesday and chosen from the previous list of 28 semifinalists.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame's website noted offensive linemen Jahri Evans and Joe Thomas, defensive lineman Dwight Freeney, linebacker James Harrison and defensive back Darrelle Revis were the five players who reached the semifinalist stage in their first year of eligibility.

Here is a look at the 15 players who advanced to the next stage:

  • Darrelle Revis, CB
  • Joe Thomas, OT
  • Willie Anderson, OT
  • Torry Holt, WR
  • Reggie Wayne, WR
  • Andre Johnson, WR
  • Jared Allen, DE
  • DeMarcus Ware, LB
  • Dwight Freeney, DE
  • Albert Lewis, CB
  • Ronde Barber, CB
  • Devin Hester, KR/PR/WR
  • Zach Thomas, LB
  • Patrick Willis, LB
  • Darren Woodson, S

Of the players eligible in their first year, Revis, Thomas and Freeney are now finaliists.

Revis, who was known for shutting down top wide receivers on an island, has a resume that includes a Super Bowl title, seven Pro Bowl nods and four All-Pro selections. While Thomas can't match that Lombardi Trophy, he was widely considered one of the best offensive linemen of his era and was a 10-time Pro Bowler and six-time All-Pro.

Freeney is exactly the type of game-changing pass-rusher Thomas was tasked with blocking, and the Indianapolis Colts legend is one step closer to Canton, Ohio, as well after a career that included a Super Bowl title, seven Pro Bowls, three All-Pro selections and 125.5 sacks.

It remains to be seen how many of these modern-era players will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame's 2023 class, as there is no exact number of players required to be chosen in a given year even though the selection committee's bylaws state that between four and nine new members will be chosen.

The 49-person selection committee will choose the class that will be announced during the NFL Honors telecast on Feb. 9 ahead of Super Bowl LVII.