Ray Lewis took another step toward induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
The former Ravens middle linebacker was named one of 27 semifinalists on Tuesday for the 2018 Hall of Fame class. The list of semifinalists will be trimmed to 15 in January, and then those inducted will learn their fate Feb. 3, the day before Super Bowl LII.
This is the first year Lewis, who retired after the 2012 season and the Ravens’ victory over the San Francisco in Super Bowl XLVII, is eligible for induction.
Lewis is considered a near lock to be a first-ballot Hall of Famer. He’d be the second player primarily associated with the Ravens to be enshrined in Canton, Ohio, where he’s expected to join former teammate Jonathan Ogden.
Considered one of the best defensive players of his generation, Lewis was selected to the Pro Bowl in 13 of his 17 NFL seasons, all spent with the Ravens. The longtime face of the franchise, Lewis won two NFL Defensive Player of the Year awards and was the Most Valuable Player of Super Bowl XXXV.
The other semifinalists are running backs Roger Craig and Edgerrin James; wide receivers Isaac Bruce, Torry Holt, Randy Moss, Terrell Owens and Hines Ward; offensive linemen Tony Boselli, Alan Faneca, Steve Hutchinson, Joe Jacoby and Kevin Mawae; linebackers Karl Mecklenburg and Brian Urlacher; defensive ends Leslie O’Neal, Simeon Rice and Richard Seymour; defensive backs Steve Atwater, Ronde Barber, LeRoy Butler, Brian Dawkins, Ty Law, John Lynch and Everson Walls; and former coaches Don Coryell and Jimmy Johnson.