As announced during the latest NFL Honors, eight players and contributors made it to the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2022.
Tackle Tony Boselli will become the first Hall of Famer for the Jacksonville Jaguars, while the late Cliff Branch made it in Canton after spending his entire career with the then-Oakland (now Las Vegas) Raiders.
Defense dominated this class thanks to four inductees, including the late New Orleans Saints linebacker Sam Mills.
Congratulations to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Class of 2022:
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) February 11, 2022
Long time Green Bay Packers safety and Lambeau Leap founder LeRoy Butler also made the cut.
Completing the list of inductees are head coach Dick Vermeil and game official Art McNally.
Unfortunately, the league missed out on several potential inductees because there were 26 semifinalists, and only eight will get through, as per the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s guidelines.
That said, here are the biggest snubs for the Class of 2022.
3. Devin Hester
There’s a great debate regarding Hester’s credentials as a Hall of Famer.
He didn’t do much as a wide receiver for the Chicago Bears, Atlanta Falcons, Baltimore Ravens, and Seattle Seahawks.
But no one can match his excellence as a kick and punt returner.
Therefore, his impact on the team’s field position and scoring are impeccable.
He’s the only player to return an opening Super Bowl kickoff for a touchdown.
Devin Hester appreciation post 🏆 pic.twitter.com/FqSTM5H7zG
— B/R Gridiron (@brgridiron) February 11, 2022
Hester has the most non-offensive touchdowns in the NFL with 20.
His 14 punt return touchdowns are also the most among all NFL players.
He also holds the record for most return touchdowns in a season by a rookie, and of all time.
If the Pro Football Hall of Fame has the players who made a difference in the game, Hester qualifies to get in.
Having the ability to score any time and change the game’s complexion makes him worthy of a gold jacket.
2. Zach Thomas
If Mills made it, then Zach Thomas must be in the Hall of Fame.
Jason Taylor will be the first player that comes into mind when the Dolphins’ defense of the 2000s is brought up.
However, Thomas is as deserving of a Hall of Fame nod as his teammate.
The middle linebacker for the Miami Dolphins and the Dallas Cowboys made First-Team All-Pro five times.
— Miami Dolphins (@MiamiDolphins) February 11, 2022
He also made the second team twice and the Pro Bowl seven times.
Thomas is also a member of the 2000s All-Decade Team and led the league in tackles two times.
The Texas Tech alum finished his career with 1,734 tackles, 20.5 sacks, 17 interceptions, and 16 forced fumbles.
1. DeMarcus Ware
Shockingly, DeMarcus Ware didn’t get enshrined in his first year of eligibility because he was one of the game’s most dominant pass rushers.
Getting two sacks and winning Super Bowl 50 alone should be enough to get him to Canton.
However, his credentials throughout his 12-season career only get stronger.
He is in the top ten in career sacks with 138.5, including 20 in 2008 with the Dallas Cowboys.
No disrespect to Sam Mills, but let’s just compare to DeMarcus Ware:
SUPER BOWL WINS
— T̷R̷O̷Y̷ ̷H̷U̷G̷H̷E̷S̷ (@TommySledge) February 11, 2022
Ware also holds franchise records in forced fumbles, tackles for losses, quarterback hits, and sacks.
The outside linebacker from Alabama made it to the First-Team All-Pro four times, the second team thrice, and the Pro Bowl nine times.
He also led the league in sacks during the 2008 and 2010 seasons.