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Hines Ward, James Harrison semifinalists for 2023 Hall of Fame Class

The two former Steelers are among 28 semifinalists.

Oakland Raiders v Pittsburgh Steelers Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

On Tuesday, the Pro Football Hall of Fame announced 28 semifinalists for the class of 2023. Among those selected are former Steelers outside linebacker James Harrison and wide receiver Hines Ward.

Undrafted in 2002 out of Kent State, James Harrison spent time with the Steelers practice squad and appeared in one game his rookie year where he recorded no statistics. After spending time with the Baltimore Ravens and the Rhein Fire of NFL Europe, Harrison returned to the Steelers in 2004 where he stuck for the next nine seasons before departing for the Cincinnati Bengals in 2013. In all, Harrison spent 14 different seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers and appeared in 177 games with 107 starts. More notably, Harrison was a five-time Pro Bowler, two-time First-Team All-Pro, and the NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2008. Harrison is also currently the Steelers all-time sack leader with 80.5. This was Harrison’s first year of eligibility for the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Hines Ward has now made it as far as a semifinalist for seven-straight years. Ward spent all 14 of his NFL seasons in Pittsburgh and was selected to the Pro Bowl four times. Playing in three Super Bowls with the Steelers, Ward was the Super Bowl MVP for the 2004 season.

There were 129 modern-era finalists announced in September. Now trimmed to 28, the list will again be trimmed to 15 in January before going down to 10 and then five during Super Bowl weekend in February. The five finalists and three senior finalists will undergo a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ vote and must receive 80% in order to be selected.

A complete list of all semifinalists for 2023 can be seen below courtesy of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.