Falcons set to open training camp this week

Devin Hester returns a kick during an Atlanta Falcons game.

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Pass rusher DeMarcus Ware, wide receiver Andre Johnson and return specialist Devin Hester are among the seven players eligible for the first time for induction to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

They were part of the 26 modern-era players announced Wednesday as semifinalists for election to the Class of 2022.

The other first-time eligible players are wide receivers Anquan Boldin and Steve Smith, edge rusher Robert Mathis and defensive tackle Vince Wilfork. Each last played during the 2016 season.

The remaining semifinalists are listed alphabetically along with the number of times they have made it this far in parentheses:

CB Eric Allen (two times), DE Jared Allen (two), T Willie Anderson (two), CB Ronde Barber (five), T Tony Boselli (seven), S LeRoy Butler (five), RB Eddie George (one), WR Torry Holt (eight), LB Sam Mills (five), DL Richard Seymour (five), special teamer Steve Tasker (nine), RB Fred Taylor (three), LB Zach Thomas (four), WR Hines Ward (six), RB Ricky Watters (two), WR Reggie Wayne (three), LB Patrick Willis (three), S Darren Woodson (six) and DT Bryant Young (three).

The 26 semifinalists will be reduced to 15 finalists before the final voting process takes place over the Super Bowl weekend in February.

--Field Level Media

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This article originally ran on gwinnettprepsports.com.

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