A perennial logjam has been seen as the biggest obstacle in keeping Bills all-time leading receiver Andre Reed from being selected for enshrinement for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. On Saturday in New Orleans that logjam was broken, but Reed was not the receiver to gain enshrinement, as fellow receiver Cris Carter was one of seven former players chosen for induction for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2013.
Once again three receivers counting Reed made the list of 15 finalists for the 2012 Hall of Fame as Tim Brown and Cris Carter were again finalists along with the Bills all-time leading receiver.
As has been the case in each of the past two years Carter and Reed advanced beyond the first cut from 15 to 10 finalists. Brown was eliminated.
When the selection committee made the second cut from 10 to five, Carter was the only receiver to advance while Reed was eliminated. It marked the first time that one of the three receivers (Brown, Carter, Reed) finally advanced to the final five candidates that are put to a yes or no vote for enshrinement.
Carter then gained 80 percent of the vote necessary for enshrinement along with all four other modern era candidates that made it to the final round. Carter, the former Eagles and Vikings receiver was in his sixth year of eligibility while Reed was in his eighth.
In the previous three years Reed has been the only receiver of the three to advance past the first reduction of finalists from 15 to 10 every time. Brown never advanced beyond the first cut. Carter each of the past two years advanced to the final 10 along with Reed.
But once again when the Selectors Committee reduced the list from 10 to five, Reed as well did not advance to the final round.
Along with Cris Carter, the other finalists that were enshrined were Larry Allen, Jonathan Ogden, Bill Parcells, Warren Sapp and both Senior Committee nominees, Curley Culp and Dave Robinson.
Among the list of enshrinees were three first-year eligible candidates in Allen, Ogden and Sapp.
Selector Committee member and Dallas Morning News Columnist Rick Gosselin said when first year eligibles gain induction it makes the task more difficult for candidates that have been waiting longer to be enshrined.
"With four first timers that would be four guys jumping the queue," said Gosselin. "If you put a first timer in.... guys like Cris Carter, Tim Brown and Andre Reed have been waiting a long time. If you put a first timer in these guys get pushed down and more guys come in as eligible."
Rod Woodson a member of the 2009 Hall of Fame class has been a supporter of Reed's induction and expressed his disappointment that the Bills Wall of Famer was again passed over.
"There are so many guys on that list you could argue for," said Woodson. "Andre is one of those guys I played against so it's easy for me to argue for Andre Reed."