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Mike Kenn, Morten Andersen Named 2015 Pro Football Hall of Fame Semi-Finalists

Two of the greatest Falcons ever go a little further in the Hall of Fame selection process.

Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Mike Kenn and Morten Andersen made the initial list of nominees for the Pro Football Hall of Fame class of 2015, which was a richly deserved honor for the team's greatest tackle and perhaps the NFL's greatest kicker. Now they're one step closer to a bust in Canton:

I made Kenn's case a while ago, so I'm just going to quote that directly because nothing's changed since then. Of course, if you wanted to read our exclusive interview with Kenn, you'll learn quite a bit.

Only five linemen in NFL history played in more games than Kenn's 251—which includes 94 straight, or nearly six full seasons—and four of those players are in the Hall of Fame today. Kenn is also remarkable in that he started every single one of those 251 games. He was a five-time Pro Bowler when that meant a little more than it does today, and a five time All-NFL selection over 17 seasons in the NFL. He was the team's rock at tackle, an incredibly effective blocker who started 15 games for the 1994 Falcons at the age of 38 and then promptly retired. Kenn was, in short, a franchise icon who is in the Falcons' Ring of Honor, and one of the greatest tackles who ever played the game of football.

It's hard to figure why Kenn isn't already in Canton, given his fearsome reputation and durability, but I suspect it has a lot to do with toiling away for a chronically lousy and underappreciated Falcons team. He protected nearly a dozen quarterbacks over his 17 seasons in the NFL, and it certainly wasn't Kenn's fault that the teams he worked so hard for were only intermittently relevant.

Suffice to say Kenn has a case for being the best Falcon ever, and he's easily one of the ten best offensive tackles ever to suit up. He deserves this.

The case is pretty clear-cut for Morten Andersen, too. The man kicked for 25 years in the NFL, drilled some truly legendary kicks along the way (hello, 1998 NFC Championship game!) and is one of the most iconic kickers in the history of the game. As long as you don't count his time as a Saint against him, you have to acknowledge the greatness and consistency of the dude who leads the NFL in scoring all-time.

It's a crowded field this year, I'll readily acknowledge, which could work against both. My hope is that if they can't make it to Canton, both receive another attention and consideration to get in for 2016.

Let's hope both make the Pro Football Hall of Fame this year. How do you like their chances?