The Pro Football Hall of Fame is often criticized by fans for decisions made regarding who gets to enter the prestigious family in Canton, Ohio. One of those instances was when Devin Hester was not a first-ballot Hall of Fame inductee.
There is no set list of criteria or achievements a player must meet to join their peers in Canton. However, if there was, Devin Hester would have met every requirement he could as an individual. Hester was chosen as one of 15 modern-era finalists in 2022 and has been chosen as one of 15 modern-era finalists again in 2023. The other finalists are as follows:
- Jared Allen (DE)
- Willie Anderson (OT)
- Ronde Barber (DB)
- Dwight Freeney (DE/OLB)
- Torry Holt (WR)
- Andre Johnson (WR)
- Albert Lewis (CB)
- Darrelle Revis (CB)
- Joe Thomas (OT)
- Zach Thomas (LB)
- DeMarcus Ware (LB)
- Reggie Wayne (WR)
- Patrick Willis (LB)
- Darren Woodson (S)
Devin Hester; A Unique Hall of Fame Case
The Devin Hester Hall of Fame case is a unique one when it comes to having a comparison. Only two players in the Hall of Fame are classified as returners. However, both of those players, Tim Brown and Deion Sanders, made contributions at their primary positions, ultimately making them Hall of Famers. Although both of them were great returners, that was not the reason they were inducted. Devin Hester made his mark in the NFL primarily as a returner. Fans consequently regard Devin Hester as the greatest returner of all time.
Hester earned first-team all-pro honors three times as a returner and second-team honors once. Hester is third all-time in punt return touchdowns and subsequently has 14 punt return touchdowns. He has six total kick return touchdowns in his career, including one in Super Bowl XLI.
Ultimately, Hester is certainly the best all-around returner the game has ever seen. He has the numbers and all-pro honors to complement the sheer impact he had on any game. The Devin Hester Hall of Fame claims are valid, but whether or not the committee thinks so is another question.
Devin Hester, Hall of Fame Nominee, Booking Agent Contact Information
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