Pro Football Hall of Fame opens up opportunities for senior players amid backlog

CANTON, Ohio — The Pro Football Hall of Fame will offer more opportunities for senior candidates in the coming three years.

Thursday's approval by the Hall of Fame Board of Trustees of several changes to the bylaws governing the selection of Hall of Fame enshrinees was a sign of support for the Hall's Board of Trustees. The shrine could only be elected into annually by one player in the old-era categories. The selection committee could choose up to three candidates for the classes of 2023-2025.

The revision was prompted by a large backlog of senior players, who had their careers over 25 years ago.

Jim Porter, president of the hall, stated that members of the selection committee had made it clear that they want more senior citizens to be ‘in the same room' for discussion. The Hall of Fame team that was responsible for the selection process created a pathway for the committee discussions, which could lead to the possible induction of more seniors.

Three seniors may not be elected in each of the three following years. There is an easier path for them to choose.

Another change in the bylaws will see 12 senior candidates presented to the hall's seniors panel. This means more players' careers will be discussed in greater detail than at past selection meetings.

The candidates in the coaches and contributor categories will be merged for the next three electoral cycles. In the classes of 2023-24 and 2025, one finalist from this group will be eligible to vote.

There were no changes in the selection process for modern-era players. These are those who had their careers end between five and 25 year before the election.

The revisions mean that the next three classes could potentially be made up of nine people: up to five players from the modern era, three seniors, and one coach or contributor. In previous years, there was a limit of eight.

August 6th will be the Hall of Fame Inductions.

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