New Orleans Saints legend Sam Mills has become a candidate for enshrinement into the Pro Football Hall of Fame for the third time.
Sam Mills is one of the fifteen finalists for the 2022 Pro Football Hall of Fame. Mills has been a semifinalist from 2020 to 2022.
The NFL and Pro Football Hall of Fame announced the former NFL players under consideration for Modern-Era player category honor.
Listed are the players and number of times each has been a finalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame:
- Sam Mills - 3
- Jared Allen - 2
- Willie Anderson - 1
- Ronde Barber - 2
- Tony Boselli - 6
- LeRoy Butler - 3
- Devin Hester - 1
- Torry Holt - 3
- Andre Johnson - 1
- Richard Seymour - 4
- Zach Thomas - 3
- DeMarcus Ware - 1
- Reggie Wayne -3
- Patrick Willis - 1
- Bryant Young - 2
Mills became an undrafted free agent after finishing college at Montclair State. The tenacious linebacker signed with the Philadelphia/Baltimore Stars of the defuncted USFL and played from 1983-85 before joining the New Orleans Saints in 1986.
Sam Mills, Rickey Jackson, Pat Swilling, and Vaughan Johnson comprised what many consider as the best linebacker corps in the history of the NFL. They were named "The Dome Patrol."
His leadership on the defense was critical for Coach Mora to field four playoff teams in New Orleans.
During his time with the Saints, Mills earned four trips to the Pro Bowl. He also intercepted four passes, forced or recovered 33 fumbles, had 10.5 sacks, and compiled seven seasons with at least 90 tackles.
The expansion-team Carolina Panthers immediately signed Mills in 1995. After three seasons as the team's middle linebacker, Mills ended his playing career and became an assistant coach.
The New Orleans Saints and Carolina Panthers elected Sam Mills to their Halls of Fame in 1998.
He died from complications due to intestinal cancer in 2005.