The Patriots today released the names of a trio of former players who have been selected as the team’s 2010 Hall of Fame nominees. A 22-member panel of media, former players, and team officials whittled the list to three, and now fans will select the man who will be inducted into the Hall Aug. 12.
Up for your consideration are:
Center Jon Morris, a member of the Patriots from 1964-74. A product of Holy Cross, Morris appeared in 130 games in his career and eschewed the NFL’s Green Bay Packers to sign with his hometown AFL Patriots in 1964. He was the Patriots’ rookie of the year in ’64, named the team’s “Unsung Hero” the next season, and was an AFL All-Star in each of his first six seasons. In 1970, after the AFL-NFL merger, Morris became the first Patriot chosen to the Pro Bowl. Last year, he was selected as the center of New England’s 50th anniversary team. This is the third straight year Morris has been a finalist for the team’s Hall.
Defensive tackle Houston Antwine, a member of the Patriots from 1961-71. Drafted by the NFL’s Lions and the AFL’s Oilers, Antwine was traded to New England for a third-round draft pick and went on to play 142 games here. He led the Patriots in sacks in 1967, ’68, and ’69, and his 39 career sacks still rank 10th in team history. “Twine” was named an AFL all-star for six consecutive years (1963-68) and also was an All-Pro selection. Antwine and Vince Wilfork were named as the defensive tackles on the Patriots’ 50th anniversary team. This is the second consecutive year Antwine has been selected as a finalist for the team Hall.
Fullback Sam “Bam” Cunningham, a member of the Patriots from 1973-79 and 1981-82. A first-round draft pick in 1973, Cunningham would retire as the franchise’s all-time leading rusher, with 5,453 yards and 3.9 yards per carry. He had 43 rushing touchdowns and six receiving TDs among his 210 career catches, and his 49 total touchdowns are still third in franchise history. Cunningham led the Patriots in rushing six times and was a Pro Bowler in 1978. He is a member of New England’s 50th anniversary team. This is his first time as a finalist for the Patriots Hall of Fame.
Online voting opened today and will continue through May 31.