The Pro Football Hall of Fame has whittled their nomination pool down to 25 semifinalists and wide receiver Isaac Bruce as well as San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch are among those names. While many are familiar with Lynch as running the team’s front office, he made a name for himself as a safety in the NFL playing 11 years and winning a Super Bowl with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (as part of that historic Tampa-2 defense) and playing also for the Denver Broncos and New England Patriots.
Bruce was better known as a wide receiver of the Los Angeles—later turned turned St. Louis—Rams, but finished out his final years in professional football with the 49ers. In the twilight of his career, Bruce still managed to be productive, finishing his first of two seasons with the 49ers with 835 receiving yards.
The six other former players of the 49ers that were part of the 102 nominees — Jeff Garcia, Ricky Waters, Brent Jones, Tim McDonald, Bryant Young, and Takeo Spikes — did not make the cut to 25.
The next step for the committee is to cut from 25 to 15. That trimming process happens January 3rd, 2019, and then the committee will make their final selections on February 2nd — the day before Super Bowl 53.
Sometimes voters only vote one person/position to go into the hall per year for whatever the reason. Bruce has been a semifinalist five times, and joins wide receivers Hines Ward, and Torry Holt. Lynch on the other hand has been a semifinalist seven times and is up against a large group of safeties including the likes of Ed Reed, Steve Atwater, Ronde Barber, LeRoy Butler, and Darren Woodson.
Both have convincing arguments to be in the Hall, but Lynch has the harder road — both with depth available and the fact one of them is Ed Reed.