Edgerrin James comes up short, again, in pursuit of Hall of Fame

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Indianapolis Colts running back Edgerrin James watches play against the Jacksonville Jaguars December 11, 2005 in Jacksonville. The Colts defeated the Jaguars 26 - 18 to remain undefeated. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – The wait continues for Edgerrin James.

The most prolific running back in Indianapolis Colts history and one of the most prolific in NFL history failed to make the cut as the  was revealed Saturday.

James is in his fourth year of eligibility and had advanced to the final 15 modern-era nominees. The Colts rushing leader in every significant rushing category and the 13th-leading rusher in NFL history will resume his pursuit of a spot in Canton, Ohio next year.

James didn’t have a reaction on having his wait extended, simply offering “it’s business as usual for me. In Miami having fun like always.’’

An eight-hour meeting by the Pro Football Hall of Fame Selection Committee – I am one of 47 selectors – settled on five modern-era candidates, two senior candidates and one contributor.

The modern-era members of the Class of 2018: linebackers Ray Lewis and Brian Urlacher, wide receivers Randy Moss and Terrell Owens and safety Brian Dawkins. Lewis, Urlacher and Moss were in their first year of eligibility.

Jerry Kramer and Robert Brazile were given the nod as senior nominees and Bobby Beathard as a contributor.

James was hoping to follow in the footsteps of other Colts individuals with bronze busts in Canton. Marvin Harrison and Tony Dungy were part of the Class of 2016, Bill Polian was included in the Class of 2015 and Marshall Faulk was inducted with the Class of 2011. Eric Dickerson is a member of the Class of 1999.

James was one of five modern-era nominees eliminated when the cut was made from 15 to 10. Also failing to survive the first reduction were wide receiver Isaac Bruce, safety John Lynch, offensive lineman Joe Jacoby and cornerback Everson Walls.

The 10-to-5 phase eliminated cornerback Ty Law, center Kevin Mawae, guard Alan Faneca, offensive tackle Tony Boselli and guard Steve Hutchinson.

In the spirit of full disclosure, my list of 10 on the initial cut: James, Owens, Moss, Dawkins, Faneca, Hutchinson, Mawae, Lewis, Urlacher and Lynch. I missed with James and Lynch.

And my 5 modern-era finalists: Dawkins, Lewis, Owens, Moss and Mawae. I missed on Urlacher.


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