In his first year of eligibility, former Texans WR Andre Johnson has been named a finalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He joins 15 modern-era finalists and two Senior nominees for the Class of 2022, which was chosen by the Hall's board of voters. Johnson, who was the inaugural member of the Texans' Ring of Honor, is the first player in franchise history to be named a finalist.
"It means a lot," said Johnson. "I always tell people that you don't play the game to become a Hall of Famer. You play the game to be a great player and help the team be successful. I don't think it has really set in yet. It's a tremendous honor. I'm thankful to the Hall of Fame committee for voting me as a finalist. It's the biggest achievement you can have as a football player other than winning a Super Bowl. I'm excited about it, very humbled and very appreciative of the people who helped me throughout my career."
"Congratulations to Andre on this tremendous honor," said Texans Co-Founder and Senior Chair Janice McNair. "Andre is not just a Hall of Fame player, but a Hall of Fame person and friend. He has accomplished so much on and off the field. We are grateful for his contributions to the Texans and our city. Andre holds a special place in our hearts."
"I'm thrilled that Andre is getting the recognition he deserves," said Texans Chair and CEO Cal McNair. "From the day we drafted him in 2003 throughout his entire career, Andre was everything we could have asked for in a player and person. Every week it seemed like opposing defenses would focus their gameplan around stopping him, but he was always able to produce and deliver for us. Andre was at his best during our biggest moments and electrified our stadium and fanbase like very few players ever have. We are excited to continue to celebrate Andre's career and everything he has accomplished."
Johnson spent the first 12 seasons of his career with the Texans after being drafted third overall in the 2003 NFL Draft out of the University of Miami (Fla.). He is the franchise's all-time leader in nearly every receiving category including career receptions (1,012), receiving yards (13,597), receiving touchdowns (64) and 100-yard games (51). Johnson also holds numerous individual game records for the Texans, including most receptions (14), receiving yards (273) and receiving touchdowns (three) in a game.
Johnson played and started 169 games for the Texans from 2003-14 and led the team in receptions and receiving yards in 10 of those seasons. He set the single-season franchise record for receptions with 115 in 2008 and receiving yards with 1,598 in 2012. Johnson also had a stretch of 133 consecutive games played with a reception (11/6/05 to 12/21/14) and scored 64 career touchdowns with the Texans, which marks the second most in franchise history.
The Texans signed Johnson to a one-day contract that allowed him to retire as a member of the organization after being honored at a press conference on Wednesday, April 19, 2017 at NRG Stadium. The team also honored Johnson on Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017 during their game against the Arizona Cardinals when they inducted him as the inaugural member of the Texans' Ring of Honor at halftime.
Johnson, who founded the Andre Johnson Foundation in 2003 as a way to give back to the community, finished his career with 1,062 catches for 14,185 yards and 70 touchdowns. He was a four-time All-Pro selection (2006, 2008-09, 2012) and seven-time Pro Bowler (2005, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014).
The Hall of Fame selection committee will reveal their 2022 Class at NFL Honors on February 10 during the week leading up to Super Bowl LVI in California. The class will then be enshrined over the summer in Canton, Ohio. There is no set number for any class of enshrinees, but the Committee's current ground rules do stipulate that between 4-8 new members will be selected each year. Every candidate must receive at least 80 percent approval of the Selection Committee at the annual meeting before he can be elected.
Check out the 80 best photos of Andre Johnson throughout his Houston Texans career.