Art Modell is among the 15 finalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
This marks the first time since 2001 that Modell has made it this far in the selection process. Modell, the former owner of the Browns and Ravens, passed away last year.
My stance is that Modell should have been enshrined in the Hall of Fame a long time ago. While Modell's move of the Browns to Baltimore has hurt his chances over the years, Al Davis relocated the Raiders twice and he's in the Hall of Fame. Among Modell's major accomplishments were his working as chairman of the league's television committee for 31 years, his lobbying other owners in the 1960s to share television revenues, and his willingness to move the Browns to the AFC when the AFL-NFL merger took place.
Running back Jerome Bettis, offensive tackle Jonathan Ogden and linebacker Kevin Greene are the other players with AFC North ties who were named finalists. Bettis, who played for the Steelers from 1996 to 2005, was a finalist last season. Ogden, who played his entire career with the Ravens (1996 to 2007), is in his first year of eligibility.
The Class of 2013, which can include no more than five modern-era nominees, will be announced the day before the Super Bowl.