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Cris Carter - Hall of Fame Semi-Finalist

I was going to use a post today to give this evening's game between Dallas and some other team all of the coverage it deserves.

Then I realized that I had already done that.  Hooray for me, and stuff!

Let's do some real news instead, shall we?  The list of semi-finalists for induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame for 2008 was announced yesterday.  Here is the list of players that the selection committee will be selecting from:

Cris Carter, Minnesota Vikings
Terrell Davis, Denver Broncos
Dermontti Dawson, Pittsburgh Steelers
Fred Dean, San Diego Chargers
Richard Dent, Chicago Bears
Randy Gradishar, Denver Broncos
Darrell Green, Washington Redskins
Kevin Greene, Los Angeles Rams
Russ Grimm, Washington Redskins
Ray Guy, Oakland/Los Angeles Raiders
Charles Haley, San Francisco 49ers
Lester Hayes, Oakland/Los Angeles Raiders
Rickey Jackson, New Orleans Saints
Joe Jacoby, Washington Redskins
Cortez Kennedy, Seattle Seahawks
Bob Kuechenberg, Miami Dolphins
Randall McDaniel, Minnesota Vikings
Art Monk, Washington Redskins
Andre Reed, Buffalo Bills,
Ken Stabler, Oakland Raiders,
Paul Tagliabue, Commissioner
Steve Tasker, Houston Oilers, Buffalo Bills
Derrick Thomas, Kansas City Chiefs
Andre Tippett, New England Patriots
George Young, GM/Administrator
Gary Zimmerman, Minnesota Vikings

The process of narrowing down the names is as follows:

The Final Preliminary List of 25 modern-era candidates will be distributed to the Selection Committee during the month of November for the purpose of the selection of 15 Modern Era Nominees.  The 16th and 17th finalists are the recommended candidates of the Seniors Committee.

In advance of the Hall of Fame Selection Meeting in February, the selectors are provided detailed biographies on each of the 17 finalist candidates.  At the annual meeting, each of the nominees is thoroughly discussed by the committee before a series of reduction votes are taken.  First, the two senior candidates are discussed and voted on for election.  They must receive the same 80 percent affirmative vote as the modern-era candidates. Next, the there is a vote that reduces the modern-era finalists list from 15 to 10.  Following that, a vote is taken to reduce the list from 10 to 5 names.  The five remaining candidates for Hall of Fame election are then voted on individually (yes or no) for membership.

Not that I have a vote or anything, but if I DID, here are the 5 guys that I think should be in.

Cris Carter - As "duh" a selection as there is on this year's list.  One of the five greatest wide receivers EVER, and should be a lock to be in Canton in August.

Darrell Green - I'm doing this alphabetically, but he's actually the fifth of my five choices.  He was an outstanding player, possessing a streak of having at least one interception in 19 straight seasons, and was one of the first to truly define the term "shutdown cornerback."

Ray Guy - If you're not going to put this guy into the Hall of Fame, then you shouldn't put any kicker or punter in there at all.  The greatest punter I ever saw.

Paul Tagliabue - Oversaw the time of the NFL's biggest growth, and had quite a bit to do with it as well.

Derrick Thomas - If not for the accident that cut his life tragically short, he would have put up enough numbers to get into the Hall without question.  As it stands now, he was an outstanding player, one of the dominant pass rushers of his generation, and he deserves a spot.

The next couple guys on my list would have been Randall McDaniel and Art Monk.  Look, I'd love for Art Monk to get into the Hall of Fame eventually, and he deserves to be there.  But am I taking him over Cris Carter?  No.  Hell no.  There's simply no compelling reason for me to do so.  Yes, Monk has rings, Carter doesn't.  Big deal.  The Hall of Fame is for individual accomplishments, not team accomplishments, and Cris Carter was a flat-out better receiver than Art Monk.

I think that Randall McDaniel should get in, too.  He dominated from the guard position for his entire career, starting from his first game as a Minnesota Viking.  But I don't think he's going to get in this year.

What say you, folks?  If you could pick any 5 people off of the above list for induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, who would they be?