10 former Panthers nominated for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2024
Of the 10, perhaps Steve Smith Sr. and Julius Peppers have the most compelling cases.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - A host of former Carolina Panthers have been nominated for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2024.
The list of Modern-Era nominees was released Tuesday, and included 10 former Panthers. In total, 173 players were nominated for the upcoming class.
Among the past Panthers nominated for consideration are wide receivers Steve Smith Sr. and Muhsin Muhammad, as well as defensive end Julius Peppers. Quarterback Jake Delhomme, kicker John Kasay and tight end Wesley Walls also made the list.
Of the group of 10, perhaps Smith and Peppers have the most compelling Hall of Fame cases.
Smith, a third-round pick in 2001, is not only one of the greatest Panthers players ever, but is also one of the best receivers to ever play the game.
He ranks eighth in league history in terms of career receiving yards, 12th in receptions and ninth in all-purpose yards. He also had 89 total touchdowns throughout his career. In 2005, Smith led the NFL in receiving yards and touchdowns, as well as in receptions. He is Carolina’s all-time leader is each of the categories.
As for Peppers, he is without a doubt one of the greatest pass rushers the game has ever seen. Dating back to 1960 when sacks were first recorded, he tallied the fifth-most ever with 159.5. In addition, he also ranks second ever in forced fumbles with 52, and has the third-most tackles for loss.
Peppers, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2002 draft, spent the majority of his career with Carolina, having played 10 of his 17 seasons with the Panthers. The North Carolina native left following the 2009 season, but came back for the final two years of his legendary career before returning after the 2018 campaign.
Delhomme, Walls and Kasay all played significant roles in the early days of the franchise. Delhomme took the Panthers to their first Super Bowl following the 2003 season, while Walls and Kasay were both members of the inaugural team. In fact, Kasay was the longest-tenured Panther ever before J.J. Jansen broke his franchise record for most games played last season.
Two players from Carolina’s most recent Super Bowl run were also nominated for the Hall of Fame in defensive end Jared Allen and cornerback Charles Tillman. Both players spent just the 2015 season with the Panthers, but helped the team to a 15-1 regular season and an appearance in Super Bowl 50. They each had phenomenal careers elsewhere prior to their lone year in Carolina.
A complete list of former Panthers nominated for the 2024 Hall of Fame class is below:
- QB Jake Delhomme
- RB Stephen Davis
- RB/Returner Michael Bates
- TE Wesley Walls
- WR Steve Smith Sr.
- WR Muhsin Muhammad
- DE Julius Peppers
- DE Jared Allen
- CB Charles Tillman
- K John Kasay
The upcoming class, which will be determined by a selection committee, will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in August 2024. The full list of nominees can be viewed here.
Players Sam Mills, Kevin Greene and Reggie White, along with front office members Mike McCormack, Bill Polian and Donnie Shell are currently all of the Hall of Famers with ties to the Panthers organization.
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