Reed, Bailey and Gonzalez headline 2019 Hall of Fame class

Eight new players will be heading to Canton, Ohio this summer

Jon Simon
February 03, 2019 - 4:08 pm

Photo: Kirby Lee - USA TODAY Sports


The 2019 Pro Football Hall of Fame class was announced on Saturday at the NFL Honors show in Atlanta, Georgia. Eight new names will be enshrined into the Hall of Fame on August 3rd, 2019 in Canton, Ohio. 

The 2019 class included cornerbacks Champ Bailey and Ty Law, safety Ed Reed, tight end Tony Gonzalez, center Kevin Mawae, contributors Pat Bowen and Gil Brandt, and safety Johnny Robinson, who was voted in as the senior finalist.

Bailey, Gonzalez and Reed all got in on the first ballot. The selection committee reportedly only took a little over two minutes discussing Reed's case. Reed spent the majority of his 12-year NFL career with the Baltimore Ravens, where he was selected 24th overall by the Ravens in 2002. Reed's resume includes six All-Pro selections, nine Pro Bowls, a spot on the NFL's All-Decade team of the 2000's and a Super Bowl XLVII victory. Reed also led the NFL in interceptions three times. 

Bailey played five years in Washington and 10 in Denver over his 15-year NFL career. Drafted seventh overall out of Georgia in 1999, Bailey went on to lead his team in interceptions six times in his career. Bailey recorded 52 career interceptions, racking up 18 picks in two seasons (2005-06), which is the most in the NFL in over 20 years. He was an All-Pro four times, selected to 12 Pro Bowls and was also a member of the 2000's All-Decade team.

Like Bailey and Reed, Gonzalez is a member of the All-Decade team of the 2000's. Gonzalez had the longest career out of the three first-ballot inductees. In his 17 seasons with the Kansas Chiefs (12) and Atlanta Falcons (5), Gonzalez recorded more than 50 receptions 16 times, including 14 seasons with 70 or more catches. Gonzalez holds a number of Chiefs records and trails only Jerry Rice for career receptions. Gonzalez was voted to 14 Pro Bowls in his career and was an All-Pro seven times.

The committee took a bit more time discussing Ty Law's case for the Hall of Fame. Nonetheless, the former New England Patriot, New York Jet, Chief and Bronco is heading to Canton. Law spent 15 seasons in the NFL after being selected in the first round of the 1995 NFL Draft by New England. Law started at cornerback in three Super Bowls for the Patriots, winning all of them. Law finished his career with 53 interceptions, recording three or more in a season nine times. He also led the NFL in interceptions twice and led his team in the same category six times. Law was a five-time Pro Bowler and was named an All-Pro in 1998 and 2003.

Former center Kevin Mawae is the lone offensive lineman in the 2019 class. Mawae played for the Seattle Seahawks, Jets and Tennessee Titans over his 16-year career. Mawae spent most of his college career as a tackle before he moved to center. He ended up playing right guard his first two seasons in the NFL before moving back to center, where he would stay for the remainder of his career. Mawae was known for his leadership and was a member of a number of strong offensive lines. In his 16 seasons, Mawae was a part of a line that blocked for a 1,000-yard rusher 13 times, names that include Curtis Martin, Travis Henry and Chris Johnson (rushed for 2,000 yards in 2009). Like the three first-ballot inductees, Mawae is a member of the 2000's All-Decade team. He was also a six-time All-Pro and was selected to eight Pro Bowls.

Broncos' owner Pat Bowlen was one of two contributors elected in the class of 2019. Bowlen has owned the Broncos since 1984 and has turned Denver into one of the most successful teams in the NFL. During his tenure, Bowlen has seen his team win over 350 games, 13 division titles, seven AFC Championships and three Super Bowls (XXXII, XXXIII and 50). Since Bowlen took ownership, the Broncos have the second-most wins in the NFL. Bowlen has been a big contributor to the league as well. Serving on a number of NFL committees over his career, Bowlen helped secure the NFL's labor and TV contracts.

Gil Brandt, the second of the two contributors in this year's class, spent almost three decades with the Dallas Cowboys organization. Brandt helped build one of the most dominant franchises in sports along with Hall of Famers Tex Schramm and Tom Landry. Serving as vice president of personnel, Brandt helped develop new scouting and management systems, many of which are still used today. The Cowboys finished with a winning record for 20 consecutive seasons (1966-1985) under Brandt. During that 20-year span, Dallas won 13 division titles, six conference championships and two Super Bowls (VI and XII). Brandt now serves as a historian for and makes regular radio appearances.

Johnny Robinson, the 2019 senior finalist, spent 12 years in the AFL/NFL as a safety for the Dallas Texans/Kansas City Chiefs. Robinson was drafted by both the Texans (AFL) and Detroit Lions (NFL) in 1960. After playing running back in his first two seasons, Robinson moved to safety. He led the AFL with 10 interceptions in 1966 and did the same in the NFL in 1970. In his career with the Chiefs, Robinson won four division titles, three AFL championships and started in two Super Bowls. Robinson is a member of the AFL's All-Time team, was named All-AFL five times and an AFL All Star six times. 

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