The Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2023 is going to have a competitive ballot on its hands.
The field of 15 modern-era finalists were announced via NFL Network on Wednesday, whittled down from a field of 129 nominees in September and 28 semifinalists in November.
The group includes arguably the greatest offensive lineman in football history, one of the past decade's most famous lockdown cornerbacks, Nos. 10, 11 and 17 on the NFL all-time receiving yard list, Nos. 9 and 18 on the sack list and the greatest return man of all time.
Here's the full list:
Joe Thomas, OT: 2007-2017 Cleveland Browns
Torry Holt, WR: 1999-2008 St. Louis Rams, 2009 Jacksonville Jaguars
Reggie Wayne, WR: 2001-2014 Indianapolis Colts
Albert Lewis, CB: 1983-1993 Kansas City Chiefs, 1994-1998 Los Angeles/Oakland Raiders
Ronde Barber, DB: 1997-2012 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Devin Hester, PR/KR: 2006-2013 Chicago Bears, 2014-2015 Atlanta Falcons, 2016 Baltimore Ravens, 2016 Seattle Seahawks
Zach Thomas, LB: 1996-2007 Miami Dolphins, 2008 Dallas Cowboys
Patrick Willis, LB: 2007-2014 San Francisco 49ers
Darren Woodson, S: 1992-2004 Dallas Cowboys
Among that group, only Thomas, Revis and Freeney are new entrants. Johnson, Ware and Hester were all first-time finalists last year, but none of them made the cut.
Thomas figures to be the shoo-in of the group, as it's hard to see a man who made 10 straight Pro Bowls with six first-team All-Pro selections and the NFL record for most consecutive snaps played missing out. Revis (seven Pro Bowls, four first-team All-Pros) probably isn't far behind given the cultural cachet of "Revis Island."
The group of inductees will be announced during the NFL Honors show on Feb. 9 on NBC, Peacock and NFL Network.