FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Three former players have been selected as finalists for this year's induction into the Patriots Hall of Fame presented by Raytheon Technologies. This year's finalists (listed in alphabetical order) are offensive lineman Logan Mankins, linebacker Mike Vrabel and defensive lineman Vince Wilfork. All three players played key roles in helping the Patriots to the NFL's only 16-0 regular season in NFL history in 2007.
Vrabel is a finalist for the sixth straight time, while Mankins and Wilfork are both first-time finalists.
Starting today, Patriots fans are encouraged to vote for the Patriots finalist most deserving of Hall of Fame induction. Fans can vote on www.patriots.com/hof through May 16. The team will announce the fans' selection of the 2022 Patriots Hall of Famer on May 17.
This year's inductee will become the 32nd person to be enshrined into the Patriots Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony has historically been held on the Enel Plaza outside the Patriots Hall of Fame presented by Raytheon Technologies. The date and time of this year's ceremony will be announced once it is confirmed.
Beginning in 2007, the Patriots started a new tradition, inducting at least one player into the team's hall of fame each year. The process involves a panel of media, alumni and staff who collectively nominate the players or head coaches most deserving of induction. After the nominations are made, the committee votes and the top-three tallies become that year's finalists. The Patriots then give fans the opportunity to vote online to select each year's inductee. The Patriots are the only team in the NFL that allows its fans to make the final selection for enshrinement into the franchise's highest individual honor. In addition to the fans annually selecting one of the three finalists, every other year either a contributor or a player who has been retired for at least 25 years is added to the Patriots Hall of Fame.
The New England Patriots held their annual nomination committee meeting on Wednesday, April 6, to vote for this year's candidates for induction into the Patriots Hall of Fame. Now it is up to the fans to select the 2022 honoree.
More information on each of this year's finalists is listed in alphabetical order below:
Logan Mankins is recognized as one of the best offensive linemen in franchise history. He played nine of his 11 NFL seasons with the New England Patriots after joining the team as a first-round draft pick in 2005. The three-time team captain earned six Pro Bowl selections and six All-Pro honors (2007, 2009-13) during his time with New England, including first-team Associated Press All-Pro honors following the 2010 season. Despite playing his entire collegiate career as a left tackle, Mankins was moved to left guard when he joined the Patriots and was immediately inserted into the starting lineup.
Mankins started all 130 regular season and 17 postseason games in which he appeared as a member of the Patriots. With Mankins in the lineup, the Patriots offense finished in top 10 in eight of his nine seasons with the Patriots - 2005 (7), 2007 (1), 2008 (5), 2009 (3), 2010 (8), 2011 (2), 2012 (1), 2013 (7). Mankins finished his career with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2014-15), earning a seventh Pro Bowl berth in his final season in 2015. He is a member of the Patriots all-2000s Team, all-2010s Team and their 50th Anniversary team.
Mike Vrabel is recognized as one of the most versatile linebackers and best free agent signings in team history. He joined the team before the 2001 season, following a four-year career with the Pittsburgh Steelers, where he was used primarily on special teams and as a reserve linebacker. During his eight-year tenure in New England, Vrabel played a major role in the Patriots dynamic run that included three Super Bowl championships in four years (2001, 2003 and 2004). He exemplified positional versatility during his Patriots tenure by starting at both inside and outside linebacker, regularly lining up on offense in short-yardage and goal-line situations, and continually making valuable contributions on various special teams units.
As a Patriot, he caught eight regular season passes and two more in the playoffs. All 10 of his receptions were for touchdowns, including touchdown receptions in back-to-back Super Bowl wins over the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl XXXVIII and Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl XXXIX. He earned Pro Bowl and first-team Associated Press All-Pro honors following the 2007 season. During the 2006 season, he played a major role when the defense set a then-franchise record by allowing just 14.8 points per game.
Vince Wilfork is recognized as one of the best defensive linemen in franchise history. He played 11 of his 13 seasons with the Patriots and helped bring two Super Bowl Championships to New England with victories in Super Bowl XXXIX and Super Bowl XLIX.
Wilfork was originally drafted by the Patriots in the first round (21st overall) of the 2004 NFL Draft. The Miami (Fla.) product spent the first 11 seasons of his NFL career with the Patriots before playing his final two seasons with the Houston Texans. While with the Patriots, Wilfork played in 158 games with 148 starts, and the Patriots owned a 123-35 (.778) record in the regular season, averaging 12 wins per season. The Patriots played in 21 playoff games, six AFC Championship Games and four Super Bowls with Wilfork anchoring the defense.
He served as a defensive co-captain for seven consecutive seasons (2008-14) and earned five Pro Bowl selections (2007, 2009-12). He also earned first-team Associated Press All-Pro Honors in 2012 and second-team Associated Press All-Pro honors in 2007, 2010 and 2011.
During his time in New England, he helped the Patriots defense finish in the top 10 in points allowed eight times.