As the dust settles on the induction ceremony for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2024, football fans are already eagerly looking ahead to next year’s ballot. The Class of 2025 features a slew of first-year eligible players poised to make their mark on football history.
While the final selection for the Class of 2025 won’t be announced until next year, speculation is already rampant about which players will earn the prestigious honor of induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. With a deep pool of talent to choose from, the selection committee will undoubtedly face some tough decisions in determining the next class of inductees. Here is a list of the first-year eligible players who will likely be on the ballot next year:
LB Luke Kuechly
RB Marshawn Lynch
QB Eli Manning
LB Terrell Suggs
K Adam Vinatieri
LB Clay Matthew
OT Joe Staley
OG Marshal Yanda
FS Earl Thomas
CB Aqib Talib
RB Darren Sproles
WR Demaryius Thomas
C Travis Frederick
Some of the best players from the modern era are featured on this list. Kuechly was one of the great middle linebackers the game has seen. A seven-time Pro Bowler, five-time All-Pro, and Defensive Player of the Year, the former Panther great shares a similar resume to the recently-inducted Patrick Willis.
Lynch ran with force every play, earning five Pro Bowl nods and helping the Seahawks win XLVIII. He also was one of the league’s most treasured personalities.
There is sure to be some divisiveness over Manning’s inclusion. While the former Giant had some forgettable years, he ranks 10th all-time in passing yards and toppled Tom Brady’s Patriots in the Super Bowl on two occasions.
Speaking of Brady, how many Super Bowls would he have if it weren’t for one of the game’s all-time iciest kickers? Vinatieri, a four-time Super Bowl champion, is the league’s all-time leader in points (2,673) and made countless clutch kicks over his career including two game-winners in the Super Bowl.
In addition to the list above, a handful of worthy players who just missed the cut in ’24 will once again have a chance to cement themselves into football history. Legends like Antonio Gates, Reggie Wayne, Jahri Evans and Jared Allen are hoping to finally receive the call next year.
That’s just a small sample of some of the accolades from this star-studded list. With a plethora of iconic players eligible for the first time, the selection process promises to be as competitive as ever.