Cardinals legend Aeneas Williams elected to Hall of Fame
Former Cardinals cornerback Aeneas Williams was among the seven players selected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday. Williams, the 12th player in franchise history to be chosen for the Hall, will be the first to go in from the team's Arizona era.
Williams joins linebacker Derrick Brooks, punter Ray Guy, defensive end Claude Humphrey, tackle Walter Jones, wide receiver Andre Reed and defensive end Michael Strahan in the 2014 class.
"All of us at the Cardinals are ecstatic for Aeneas, who is a true Hall of Famer in every sense of the word," team president Michael Bidwill said in a statement. "His play on the field made him one of the NFL's all-time great players, but his integrity and character were just as exceptional. Aeneas, Tracy and their family have been an integral part of the Cardinals family, and I can't think of a better person to become the first from the team's Arizona era to be enshrined in Canton."
The Cardinals' other members of the Hall of Fame are Charles W. Bidwill Sr. (owner, Class of 1967), Jimmy Conzelman (coach, Class of 1964), tackle Dan Dierdorf (Class of 1996), halfback John âPaddyâ Driscoll (Class of 1965), cornerback Dick âNight Trainâ Lane (Class of 1974), halfback Ollie Matson (Class of 1972), halfback Ernie Nevers (Class of 1963), tight end Jackie Smith (Class of 1994), halfback Charley Trippi (Class of 1968), cornerback Roger Wehrli (Class of 2007) and safety Larry Wilson (Class of 1978).
A third-round selection and the 59th overall pick in the 1991 NFL Draft out of Southern, Williams played the first 10 of his 14 NFL seasons in Arizona. While a member of the Cardinals, he started 159 of 160 games and had 46 interceptions, a total that still ranks second in franchise history. He also accumulated 629 tackles, two sacks and 10 forced fumbles.
Considered one of the NFL's all-time best cornerbacks, Williams was voted to the Pro Bowl eight times, including six times as a member of the Cardinals, going every year from 1994-99. He also was named to the NFL Team of the 1990s and was inducted into the Cardinals Ring of Honor in 2008.
Williams, who played his final four NFL seasons with the St. Louis Rams, was a finalist for the Hall of Fame each of the past two years.
The 2014 class will be inducted on Saturday, August 2, at the official Hall of Fame Enshrinement Ceremony in Canton, Ohio.