The Pro Football Hall of Fame annually announces the new class of inductees during Super Bowl weekend. The announcement goes down today at 2:30 p.m. PT today, and the 49ers will have two candidates of note: former owner Edward DeBartolo Jr. and former outside linebacker and defensive end Charles Haley.
Both have strong reasons for induction, but both face tough tests this year among the many finalists. They are competing against the likes of Larry Allen, Jonathan Ogden, Michael Strahan and Warren Sapp, among several others.
While guys like Allen, Ogden and Strahan would seem to be likely candidates, it can sometimes be difficult to figure out who will get the nod. Chris Carter and Tim Brown both continue to wait in spite of fantastic numbers. Bill Parcells remains on the ballot and will likely get in at some point. For Charles Haley in particular, it's going to be tough due to the numbers game.
For Eddie DeBartolo, I imagine he waits another year with the voters sending in deceased Ravens owner Art Modell. Although Browns fans have plenty of vitriol for Modell, he is likely a strong candidate in the eyes of the voters because of his work in the AFL-NFL merger. Eddie would be the first post-merger owner to gain entry, so I would not be surprised if voters decided he needed to wait for Modell first.
Personally, making someone "wait" is kind of BS, and is an issue in other Hall of Fames as well. In my mind, you either are a Hall of Famer or you are not a Hall of Famer. Some voters will proclaim that a player is a Hall of Famer, but not worthy of first ballot because of this or that. When there are limits on how many people you can vote for, I understand, but when your logic is just "he's Hall-worthy but not first ballot", then I call BS.