The Pro Football Hall of Fame announced their 27 semifinalists for the Class of 2013, and among them are two former Pittsburgh Steelers, running back Jerome Bettis and linebacker Kevin Greene. Bettis was a finalist the last two years and Greene was a finalist last year.
“It’s always an honor whenever you can reach the semifinalist list,” said Bettis. “It’s never a thing where you assume it’s going to happen. Nothing is promised to you. It’s always refreshing and new. I am just excited and I will go from there. I am not overly excited because I understand the process, but there is reason for excitement.”
Normally there are only 25 semifinalists, but there are 27 this year because of a three-way tie.
That list will be narrowed down to 15 modern-era finalists in early January.
The Class of 2013 will be announced on Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013, the day before Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Tags: Jerome Bettis, Kevin Greene
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Saturday, January 7
The Steelers held a walk-thru on Saturday morning, before boarding a plane and heading to Denver to take on the Broncos on Sunday afternoon.
There was some good news for a few former Steelers on Saturday afternoon as Jerome Bettis, Dermontti Dawson, Kevin Greene and Jack Butler were all finalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2012. There are 15 modern-era finalists and two senior members, including Butler.
The Class of 2012 will be announced on February 4 in Indianapolis.
Dawson learned of being a finalist when he received a text from former Steelers wide receiver Louis Lipps, which was then followed up by phone calls and other messages from friends.
“The way I approach it, if I am selected, then I am selected. If I am not, I’m not,” said Dawson, who has been down this road before as a finalist. “At least I am a finalist so I have another opportunity. I just take it one day at a time. That is it.”
Dawson, who played for the Steelers from 1988-2000, is considered one of the best to play the game but has the disadvantage of being at a position where he doesn’t have stats.
“I think that is part of it as well,” said Dawson. “That is a hard thing for offensive linemen. It’s supposed to be based on what you did as a player, what you contributed to the game. We are not stat guys, except for jumping offside or holding, those are the only stats we have. Everything is about stats and that makes it tougher for offensive linemen to get in there. You have only had a handful of centers to get in the Hall of Fame. The percentage is very low when it comes to offensive linemen.”
The perfect scenario for Dawson would be him and his former teammate Bettis going in the Hall together this year.
“That would be great,” said Dawson. “If both of us were elected…I don’t know if it’s happened before with two teammates but it would be great.
“Jerome is more than deserving to be elected. He was consistent throughout his career. Every year he was consistent. He wasn’t the typical running back. He wasn’t a super speedy guy. He got it done, came in every week and got it done. He was a load.”
Dawson continues to follow the Steelers and is looking forward to Sunday’s game against the Broncos.
“It’s going to be a good game,” said Dawson. “Overall I think it’s going to be a close game. I hope Ben’s (Roethlisberger) ankle is going to be good enough that he is going to be mobile. I think it’s going to be a competitive game.
“I think the key is going to be those guys trying to corral (Tim) Tebow and contain the running game.”
Steelers players relax for a minute before the start of the Saturday morning walk-thru – when things got down to business.
Steelers arrive in Denver
Tags: Dermontti Dawson, Hall of Fame, Jack Butler, Jerome Bettis, Kevin Greene, Steelers Playoff Diary
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