Mark Craig’s Hall of Fame ballot
I wasn’t as high on Isaac Bruce as my 47 fellow selectors on the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s selection committee Saturday. When we cut from 15 to 10 — a crazy hard thing to do because every finalist was outstanding — I had everyone who made it except Bruce. I had LeRoy Butler in my top 10 instead. In the cut from 10 to five, I went with these five, listed in alphabetical order …
Steve Hutchinson: He was too much of a dominant force to be stuck any longer in a logjam at offensive line.
Edgerrin James: I was strongly in James’ corner this year. I had him listed as the fourth-best option of the 15.
Troy Polamalu: The no-brainer. The ultimate example of the modern safety.
Richard Seymour: I don’t look at his 57½ sacks. I look at how dominant and adaptable this massive weapon was while Bill Belichick was using him to change his defense week to week back when the Patriots won three of four Super Bowls in the 2000s.
Zach Thomas: His five first-team All-Pros are as many or more than 19 linebackers in the Hall of Fame.
Seymour and Thomas fell short of being selected. Bruce and Steve Atwater were the two selections I didn’t have. When I cut to 10, Atwater was my seventh pick. He is deserving.