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Sharpe a Step Closer to Canton

Posted Jan 9, 2011

On Sunday, Shannon Sharpe was named a finalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame for the third consecutive year. The Class of 2011 will be announced the day before Super Bowl XLV.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- For the third consecutive year, Shannon Sharpe has been named a finalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

The tight end is one of 15 modern-era finalists up for consideration, along with two senior nominees.

Sharpe, who played 12 years with the Broncos and two years with the Ravens, owns more receptions, receiving yards, receiving touchdowns, Super Bowl wins and Pro Bowl selections than any of the seven tight ends enshrined in the Hall of Fame. He finished his career as the NFL's all-time leader in receptions, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns by a tight end.

He was named the first-team tight end on the NFL 1990s All-Decade Team, which was chosen by the Hall of Fame Selection Committee members.

When Sharpe was elected as the 22nd member of the Denver Broncos Ring of Fame, former teammate Rod Smith said the tight end's next stop should be Canton, Ohio.

"Compare the numbers to the guys who are in the Hall of Fame, and it isn't even close," Smith said. "Three Super Bowls, numerous Pro Bowls, he's a team leader, kept his nose clean -- wasn't a guy who got in trouble in the league or anything -- I don't know what else you want. If this is going to be the Hall of Fame, then that guy should be the next one to go in there."

The voting for the Class of 2011 will be conducted at the Pro Football Hall of Fame Selection Committee’s annual meeting, which will be held on Saturday, February 5, 2011 -- the day before Super Bowl XLV at Cowboys Stadium in North Texas.

That evening, the class will be announced during a one-hour live NFL Network special at 5 p.m. MST.