New York Jets legend Winston Hill finally has his chance at the Hall of Fame. Meanwhile, the committee continues to ignore Joe Klecko.
The NFL has released the list of 20 senior player Hall of Fame finalists for the 2020 class. That brought along both good and bad news for the New York Jets and their fans.
JUST ANNOUNCED: The Class of 2020 Centennial Slate Finalists. #PFHOF20
— Pro Football Hall of Fame (@ProFootballHOF) December 19, 2019
The good news is that legendary Jets tackle Winston Hill is on the ballot for the first time. Hill is often considered one of the greatest tackles of his era. He has earned a number of honors in his career.
Hill is a six-time All-Pro, including his All-AFL honors. He’s an eight-time Pro Bowler, including AFL All-Star honors. He was named the left tackle on the AFL all-time second team. He was behind Hall of Fame left tackle Ron Mix. Hill earned that nod in 1970, he would play eight more seasons. Hill also played in 174 straight games in his career. That’s the 10th longest streak in NFL history.
The Jets retired Hill’s No. 75 in 2009 and inducted him into the Ring of Honor in 2010.
Hill is without question the best tackle in franchise history. There’s even an argument to be had that Hill is the best offensive lineman in New York Jets history, above names like Kevin Mawae and Nick Mangold.
This honor is long overdue. Sadly, Hill passed away in 2016, so he won’t be able to revel in this achievement. The least the NFL can do is honor Hill as part of the largest senior player class in the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s history.
The bad news is that Joe Klecko is once again not a finalist. This is always disappointing. Klecko has been a finalist a number of times but has never gotten in. He’s a two-time first-team All-Pro and a four-time Pro Bowler. He is arguably the best nose tackle of his generation. Yet, he’s likely not going to get his due anytime soon.