Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Jets' Martin joins four linemen as newest members of NFL Hall

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INDIANAPOLIS -- Running back Curtis Martin and four linemen were elected to the American Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday, along with one senior committee choice.

Martin is the fourth-leading rusher in NFL history. He is joined by Chris Doleman, Cortez Kennedy, Willie Roaf, Dermontti Dawson and senior selection Jack Butler.

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Jerome Bettis, Cris Carter and Bill Parcells were among the finalists who didn't make it.

A panel of 44 media members voted. The inductions are in early August in Canton, Ohio.

Martin made it for his consistency and durability, rushing for 14,101 yards and 90 touchdowns. He rushed for at least 1,000 yards in each of his first 10 seasons, the first three with New England and the others with the Jets. The 1995 Offensive Rookie of the Year, Martin won the NFL rushing title in 2004 with 1,697 yards.

Doleman and Kennedy were sackmasters from the defensive line, Doleman at end and Kennedy at tackle.

Doleman had 1501/2 sacks in his 15 seasons, mostly with Minnesota. He made the Pro Bowl eight times and was fourth on the sacks list when he retired.

Kennedy was a force inside, both as a run stopper and in threatening quarterbacks. The 1992 Defensive Player of the Year made eight Pro Bowls, had 58 sacks -- an unusually high total for a tackle -- and spent his entire 11-season career with Seattle.

Roaf made 11 Pro Bowls. He made the All-Decade team for the 1990s.

Dawson made seven Pro Bowls as the Steelers' centre, that rare snapper who also could block defensive players one on one. He started for Pittsburgh for most of his 13 pro seasons.

Butler also played for the Steelers as a cornerback from 1951-59, picking off 52 passes, at the time second most in NFL history.

-- The Associated Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition February 5, 2012 B6

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