Willie Anderson among 2022 Pro Football Hall of Fame finalists

Willie Anderson Bengals
Posted at 9:12 PM, Dec 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-30 21:12:36-05

CINCINNATI — Bengals great Willie Anderson is a finalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame's class of 2022.

Anderson joins DeMarcus Ware, Andre Johnson, Devin Hester and Patrick Willis as first-time finalists. He is the first Bengal on the ballot since left tackle Anthony Munoz and quarterback Ken Anderson were finalists in 1998.

"This is truly amazing — truly, truly, truly amazing," Anderson said in a video posted to Twitter. "I told myself I was not going to watch the broadcast, [but] I turned it on just in time to watch coach Dick Vermeil talk...I had no idea that they hadn't mentioned Tony Boselli or my name yet, but turned it on and Jesus Christ, thank you God."

Drafted 10th overall in the 1996 draft, Anderson immediately made an impact in Cincinnati and was named to the 1996 All-Rookie Team by the Pro Football Writers Association. That success continued in his 13 years in the league. Anderson went to four consecutive Pro Bowls, received first-team All-Pro honors from 2004 to 2006 and received the Ed Block Courage Award in 2004.

Anderson started in 184 of his 195 career games, including Corey Dillon's two record-breaking games in 1997. This is his ninth year of eligibility.

Boselli is the only other offensive tackle finalist. Other finalists include Ronde Barber, Torry Holt, Reggie Wayne and Bryant Young. For a full list of finalists, click here.

The Hall of Fame's selection committee will meet virtually to select candidate Jan. 18. The committee can select up to five modern-era players who must receive 80% of votes.

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