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Finally Time for ‘Big Sey’? Richard Seymour Among Finalists for 2022 Pro Football Hall of Fame Class

Patriot Country
Patriot Country
 2021-12-31
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A key member of the New England Patriots championship teams in the early 2000s made notable progress in his quest for what would be a well-deserved call to the Hall.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame announced its finalists for its 2022 Class of inductees on Thursday. Former Patriots defensive tackle Richard Seymour was among the prestigious list of 15; earning a spot among the finalists for the fourth straight year.

Seymour has long been regarded as a strong candidate for enshrinement. He is deservingly regarded as one of the greatest defensive players in Patriots’ history. During his career, he was also considered one of, if not the best, defensive lineman in the NFL. “Big Sey” played college football for the University of Georgia, where he earned first-team All American honors in 2000, and was named to the All-SEC First Team in 1999 and 2000. He was drafted sixth overall in the 2001 NFL Draft by the Patriots. Some consider Seymour to be among the best players in NFL history to be chosen as the sixth overall pick.

Throughout his Patriots tenure, Seymour was named to five All-Pro teams, and was a member of three Super Bowl-winning Patriots teams (XXXVI, XXXVIII, XXXIX.) He was selected to seven Pro Bowls, gaining selections as both a 4-3 defensive tackle and as a 3-4 defensive end. On occasion, Seymour even played fullback on short yardage and goal line situations. His contributions to the Patriots earned him spots on both the New England Patriots 50th Anniversary Team and the New England Patriots All-2000s Team. Seymour finished his career as a member of the Oakland Raiders, where he earned two additional Pro-Bowl selections. He retired in 2013, having amassed amazing career totals of 496 tackles, 57.5 sacks, four forced fumbles and two interceptions.

On October 23, 2021, Seymour became the 30th inductee into the Patriots Hall of Fame, joining Troy Brown (2012), Tedy Bruschi (2013), Kevin Faulk (2016), Ty Law (2014), Matt Light (2018) and Willie McGinest (2015), as the seventh player to enter the Patriots Hall as a three-time Super Bowl champion with the team.

Seymour’s on-field accomplishments have earned him near-universal praise from his former teammates, opponents and coaches. Patriots head coach Bill Belichick is among his most ardent advocates. “Richard was a tremendous player,” Belichick said of Seymour shortly before his induction to the Patriots Hall. “He had a tremendous skill set. He had great length. Explosive. Very quick for his size. He could do everything,”

Former Patriots’ nose tackle Vince Wilfork was also among this year’s list of semifinalists. Despite an impressive, and worthy resume, Wilfork did not advance past this round of cuts for enshrinement in the Class of 2022. The 14 other finalists for the 2022 Pro Football Hall of Fame class are as follows:

DE Jared Allen

OT Willie Anderson

S Ronde Barber

OT Tony Boselli

S LeRoy Butler

KR Devin Hester

WR Torry Holt

WR Andre Johnson

LB Sam Mills

LB Zach Thomas

DE DeMarcus Ware

WR Reggie Wayne

LB Patrick Willis

DT Bryant Young

The Pro Football Hall of Fame will announce its induction Class of 2022 on Saturday, February 12, 2022, one night before Super Bowl LVI.

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