Some much needed good news on this sorta blah day/week/month of Pittsburgh Steelers’ news.
Alan Faneca and Hines Ward have moved on to be named semifinalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2017.
They are two of now 26 players in consideration for their gold jackets.
Faneca started 201 games in his career with 153 of those coming in Pittsburgh. He was one of the best guards of his era, named to the Pro Bowl nine times. His signature play was the lead block he provided Willie Parker on his famous 75 yard touchdown run in Super Bowl 40. He overcame epilepsy to have a monumental career. Faneca served as an assistant coach for the Steelers during the spring and training camp.
Ward may have a tougher path to make it into Canton. He finished his career with exactly 1000 receptions and caught 85 touchdowns. He’s the current Steelers’ receiving leader in virtually every category, though those records will likely be eventually broken by Antonio Brown. Ward brings a set of intangibles most at his position don’t; his winning smile, attitude, and nastiness as a blocker.
But with so many others at his spot vying to get in, and the DMV-line nature of how long it takes for some of these players to get in, he may have a long wait.
This list will be whittled down to 15, then 10, before the inductees are announced in February.