The Pro Football Hall of Fame announced its 2015 semifinalists, and three former Tampa Bay Buccaneers were included on the list: WR Tim Brown, S John Lynch and head coach Tony Dungy.
John Lynch and Tony Dungy were among the 15 finalists last year, but obviously weren't inducted. They' have a good shot of getting that far again, but whether they'll be inducted is another matter entirely. In my perfectly subjective judgment, I'd say Dungy has a slightly better than John Lynch of getting in.
Still, Lynch has a really good track record. Four Pro Bowl selections with two teams, a Super Bowl win, two first-team All-Pro selections, two Man of the Year awards and a Defensive Back of the Year award. Now that's an impressive list. His reputation as one of the hardest-hitting safeties to ever play in the league doesn't hurt, and neither does his presence on all of the dominant Tampa 2 defenses.
Dugny, for his part, was an outstanding defensive coordinator, turned around the Bucs, brought the Indianapolis Colts a Super Bowl and was the first black head coach to win a Super Bowl. His track record is impressive, but is it enough for the Hall of Fame?
Competition is heavy this year, too. Isaac Bruce, Edgerrin James, Torry Holt, Ty Law, Kevin Mawae, Junior Seau and Kurt Warner are eligible for the first time this season, while repeat candidates like Marvin Harrison, Charles Haley and Jerome Bettis create further barriers for the Bucs' candidates.
The next step will happen on January 8, when the Hall of Fame will announce the 15 finalists for the Hall of Fame. After that, five of those players and coaches will be added to the Hall of Fame, in addition to one contributor and one senior selection.