Punter Ray Guy and defensive end Claude Humphrey were named today by the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Seniors Committee as finalists for election into the Hall of Fame with the Class of 2014.
Guy and Humphrey will join 15 yet-to-be-named modern-era candidates on the list of finalists from which the Class of 2014 will be selected. The Hall of Fame selection meeting will be held on Feb. 1, 2014, the day before Super Bowl XLVIII in New York/New Jersey.
Guy became the first punter ever drafted in the first round when the Oakland Raiders selected him as the 23rd overall pick of the 1973 NFL Draft. He earned All-Pro accolades six straight times from 1973 to 1978 and was named to seven Pro Bowls.
He averaged 40 yards per punt in all but one of his 14 seasons. In 207 career games, he punted 1,049 times for 44,493 yards for a career average of 42.4 yards. He also was noted for his precision as he dropped punts inside the 20-yard-line 209 times from 1976 through his retirement after the 1986 season. Data for that statistic was not available during his first three years. Guy was named to the NFL’s All-Decade Team of the 1970s.
Humphrey, who was nominated as a senior candidate in 2009, was selected as the third player overall in the 1968 draft by the Atlanta Falcons and was named the NFL’s Defensive Rookie of the Year.
Although the sack did not become an official statistic until 1982, Humphrey is unofficially credited as having 122 career sacks during his career with the Falcons (1968-1978) and Philadelphia Eagles (1979-1981).
Humphrey, a five-time All-Pro and six-time Pro Bowl pick, battled back from a potential career-ending knee injury that forced him to miss the entire 1975 season. He responded by recording a career-high 15 sacks in 1976. He capped his career with three final seasons in Philadelphia. In 1980, he led the Eagles with a club-high 14.5 sacks as the Eagles won the NFC championship to earn a berth in Super Bowl XV.
Guy and Humphrey must receive the same 80 percent voting support that is required of all finalists. The Hall’s Selection Committee can elect a maximum of two senior candidates and five modern-era candidates for a class no smaller than four or larger than seven.
The Seniors Committee is comprised of nine members of the overall selection committee. Through mail vote, the 2014 senior nominees were reduced to a final list of candidates. Today, five members of the Seniors Committee met at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton to discuss each of the senior finalists. A senior nominee is an individual whose career ended at least 25 years ago.
The Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2014 will be formally enshrined during the Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Festival in Canton, Ohio next August.
Ray Guy Bio | Photo Gallery
Claude Humphrey Bio | Photo Gallery
Behind the process of naming the senior candidates>>>
Facebook Exclusive: Watch as Joe D and Kenny Houston tell Ray Guy he’s a finalist>>>