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Blue-ribbon panel for NFL All-Time Team revealed

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  • By NFL.com
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As the final month in the National Football League's 100th Season approaches, the league announced plans today to reveal the 100 greatest players and 10 greatest coaches in NFL history.

The NFL 100 All-Time Team series will premiere on Nov. 22 and continue for six weeks through Week 17 of the regular season. Rich Eisen, Cris Collinsworth and Bill Belichick will reveal the NFL 100 All-Time Team selections by position in each episode beginning at 8 pm ET every Friday night on NFL Network. A live reaction show hosted by Chris Rose, exclusively on NFL Network will follow immediately afterward.

ESPN and the NFL will reveal All-Time Team finalists by each position group in the week leading up to the All-Time Team selections announced on Friday.

The All-Time Team construction process began in early 2018 with the selection of a 26-person blue-ribbon voting panel by the three-person organizing committee of Pete Abitante, Joel Bussert and Joe Horrigan.

"Our goal was to create a panel made up of coaches, team and front office executives, former players and members of the media with a deep appreciation for the history of the League, its teams and players, as well as a commitment to conduct research, if necessary," said Pete Abitante, NFL Vice President of Special Projects. "I think each selector would admit that they were incredibly challenged by this task, but each person gave serious thought and serious consideration to each and every player discussed."

Members of the 26-person blue-ribbon panel are:

League voters
»  Joel Bussert: Former NFL Vice President of Player Personnel and League Historian
»  Joe Horrigan: 42-year Pro Football Hall of Fame Executive
»  Chris Willis: NFL Films Historian

Coaches
»  Bill Belichick: Six-time Super Bowl-winning Head Coach
»  Tony Dungy: Pro Football Hall of Famer and Super Bowl-winning Head Coach
»  Dick LeBeau: Pro Football Hall of Famer and two-time Super Bowl-winning Defensive Coordinator
»  John Madden: Pro Football Hall of Famer and Super Bowl-winning Head Coach
»  Don Shula: Pro Football Hall of Famer and Super Bowl-winning Head Coach
»  Dick Vermeil: Super Bowl-winning Head Coach

Personnel
»  Ernie Accorsi: 19-year NFL General Manager
»  Gil Brandt: Pro Football Hall of Famer and two-time Super Bowl-winning General Manager
»  Charley Casserly: 14-year NFL General Manager
»  Bill Polian: Pro Football Hall of Famer & Super Bowl-winning General Manager
»  Ron Wolf: Pro Football Hall of Famer and three-time Super Bowl Champion General Manager

Players
»  Dan Fouts: Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback and veteran broadcaster
»  Ron Jaworski: Former NFL quarterback and veteran broadcaster
»  Ozzie Newsome: Pro Football Hall of Famer and two-time Super Bowl Champion General Manager
»  Art Shell: Pro Football Hall of Famer, former Head Coach and two-time Super Bowl Champion

Media
»  Dave Anderson: Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist with the New York Times who covered the NFL for more than 50 years
»  Judy Battista: NFL Media National Columnist and Reporter
»  Jarrett Bell: Pro Football Hall of Fame voter and USA Today NFL Columnist
»  Rick Gosselin: Pro Football Hall of Fame voter and former Dallas Morning News Columnist
»  Peter King: Pro Football Hall of Fame voter and veteran sportswriter
»  Don Pierson: Author and veteran sportswriter
»  Charean Williams: Pro Football Hall of Fame voter and veteran sportswriter and president of the Pro Football Writers Association

Team Structure

In building the structure for the team, the organizing committee researched various commemorative team compilations done by other leagues and organizations. Ultimately, a 100-player team was decided upon, broken up with a specific number of players -- unranked -- across the following positions:

Offense

»  Quarterbacks: 10
»  Running Backs: 12
»  Wide Receivers: 10
»  Tight Ends: 5
»  Tackles: 7
»  Guards: 7
»  Centers: 4

Defense

»  Defensive Ends: 7
»  Defensive Tackles: 7
»  Linebackers: 12 (6 MLB/ILB; 6 OLB)
»  Cornerbacks: 7
»  Safeties: 6 
»  Kickers: 2
»  Punters: 2
»  Kick Returners: 2

Selection Process and Timeline

The selection criteria for the NFL All-Time Team followed the by-laws outlined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame selection process:

The only criteria for election of the Hall of Fame are a nominee's achievements and contributions as a player, coach, or a contributor in professional football in the United States of America.

Additionally, a player must have participated in at least five seasons in the NFL, AFL (American Football League), the AAFC (All-American Football Conference), or some combination thereof.

NFL 100 All-Time Team serves as the marquee series within the NFL's slate of original programming and content developed to celebrate the league's 100th season. Starting Friday, Nov. 22 at 8 p.m. ET on NFL Network, members of the All-Time Team will be revealed by position, followed by a live reaction show over a six-week period:

November 22 (all times ET)
8 p.m. -- NFL 100 All-Time Team: Running Backs & two Head Coaches
9 p.m. -- NFL 100 All-Time Team Reaction Show

November 29
8 p.m. -- NFL 100 All-Time Team: Defensive Line & Linebackers and 1 Head Coach
9 p.m. -- NFL 100 All-Time Team Reaction Show

December 6
8 p.m. -- NFL 100 All-Time Team: Defensive Backs & Safeties and 1 Head Coach
9 p.m. -- NFL 100 All-Time Team Reaction Show

December 13
8 p.m. -- NFL 100 All-Time Team: Tight Ends & Offensive Line and 4 Head Coaches
9 p.m. -- NFL 100 All-Time Team Reaction Show

December 20
8 p.m. -- NFL 100 All-Time Team: Wide Receivers and 2 Head Coaches
9 p.m. -- NFL 100 All-Time Team Reaction Show

December 27
8 p.m. -- NFL 100 All-Time Team: Quarterbacks (2-hour series finale)
10 p.m. -- NFL 100 All-Time Team Reaction Show

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