Former Gators RB Fred Taylor Named Semifinalist for NFL Hall of Fame

Zach Goodall

For the first time after retiring from the NFL nine years ago, former Florida Gators, Jacksonville Jaguars, and New England Patriots running back Fred Taylor's fight for Hall of Fame respect received some positive returns.

The 13-year pro, and former Florida standout, has been named one of 25 semifinalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2020. 

In his NFL career, Taylor amassed 11695 rushing yards on 2534 carries, averaging 4.6 yards per carry, and scored 66 touchdowns. A higher-volume receiving back earlier in his career, Taylor also notched 290 catches for 2834 yards, and eight receiving touchdowns.

Taylor was Jacksonville's first round pick, with the ninth overall selection, in the 1998 NFL Draft. Following his senior season at Florida, Taylor was presented First Team All-SEC honors and named a Third Team All-American by the Associated Press, after rushing for 1292 yards and 13 touchdowns in 1997.

Taylor was inducted into the University of Florida's Athletic Hall of Fame as a "Gator Great" in 2010.

25 semifinalists were named for the Class of 2020, including three first-year eligible players in former Pittsburgh Steelers safety Troy Polamalu, Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Reggie Wayne, and San Francisco 49ers linebacker Patrick Willis.

Taylor is joined by former New York Giants linebacker Carl Banks, 49ers (among other teams) running back Ricky Watters, and 49ers defensive tackle Bryant Young as previously eligible players to make the cut for the first time.