First-year eligible players Peyton Manning, wide receiver Calvin Johnson, safety Charles Woodson and defensive end Jared Allen are among the 25 semifinalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2021.
The list was announced Tuesday.
The four players join (in alphabetical order) cornerback Eric Allen, tackle Willie Anderson, cornerback Ronde Barber, linebacker Cornelius Bennett, tackle Tony Boselli, safety LeRoy Butler, guard Alan Faneca, safety Rodney Harrison, wide receiver Torry Holt, safety John Lynch, linebacker Clay Matthews, linebacker Sam Mills, defensive lineman Richard Seymour, wide receiver/special teamer Steve Tasker, running back Fred Taylor, linebacker Zach Thomas, wide receiver Hines Ward, wide receiver Reggie Wayne, linebacker Patrick Willis, safety Darren Woodson and defensive tackle Bryant Young.
BREAKING: 4 first-year eligible players are among the list of 25 Modern-Era Player Semifinalists for the Class of 2021.
— Pro Football Hall of Fame (@ProFootballHOF) November 24, 2020
Peyton, Magatron and … who will be enshrined?
This list will be whittled to 15 by the Hall of Fame’s Board of Selectors. As many as five finalists will be chosen for the Class of 2021, which will be selected one day before Super Bowl LV.
Drew Pearson already was named the senior finalist, Tom Flores was tabbed as the coach finalist and Bill Nunn as the contributor finalist. Should all three be chosen for enshrinement, the Class of 2021 would have eight new Hall of Famers.
Manning is a five-time NFL MVP and 14-time Pro Bowl selection. He played with the Indianapolis Colts (1998-2011) and Denver Broncos (2012-15), winning a Super Bowl title with each team.
Johnson posted an NFL-record 1,964 receiving yards in 2012 and was named to the All-Decade Team of the 2010s. Nicknamed “Megatron,” Johnson played nine seasons for the Detroit Lions before retiring after the 2015 campaign.
Woodson recorded 65 interceptions and 13 defensive touchdowns during his 18-year career with the then-Oakland Raiders (1998-2005, 2013-15) and Green Bay Packers (2006-12).
Jared Allen posted 136 sacks — including 22 in 2011 — during his career with the Kansas City Chiefs (2004-07), Minnesota Vikings (2008-13), Chicago Bears (2014-15) and Carolina Panthers (2015).
–Field Level Media (@FieldLevelMedia)