First-year eligibles LaDainian Tomlinson, Hines Ward, Jason Taylor and Brian Dawkins are among 26 semifinalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s class of 2017.
Joining them as first-time semifinalists is tackle-guard Chris Hinton, who retired in 1989 but has made this cut for the first time.
The other 21 candidates — there was a tie for 25th in voting by Hall of Fame selectors as the list was trimmed from an original 94 — all have made it this far in the past.
Two coaches, Don Coryell and Jimmy Johnson, have made the semifinals. So has placekicker Morten Andersen, the NFL’s career scoring leader.
Previously nominated by the veterans committee was safety Kenny Easley, and by the contributors’ committee were Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and former NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue.
NFL STATS CENTRAL: The latest NFL scores, schedules, odds, stats and more.
The 2017 class will be selected on Feb. 4, the day before the Super Bowl.
For more NFL coverage: http://www.Pro32.Ap.Org and http://www.Twitter.Com/AP_NFL.