The Pittsburgh Steelers drafted their most recent Pro Football Hall of Famer and their all-time receiving leader 24 years ago today.
Pittsburgh selected LSU guard Alan Faneca with the 26th pick in the 1998 NFL Draft way back on April 18 of that year.
“I think he’s Bill Cowher’s kind of player,” ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. said of Faneca at the time. “What jumps out at you on film with his is his aggressiveness and mobility for a big man.”
Faneca went on to play a decade in Pittsburgh. Not only did he win Super Bowl XL with the Steelers, but Faneca also individually claimed six First-Team All-Pro nods, seven Pro Bowl selections and was named to the NFL’s 2000s All-Decade team.
Faneca was enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2021, and presented by former Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward.
Pittsburgh drafted Ward in the third round that year out of Georgia. He went on to play his entire 14-year career with the Steelers.b
Ward is the franchise’s all-time leader in receptions (1,000), receiving yardage (12,083) and receiving touchdowns (85).
He won two Lombardi Trophies and was named MVP of Super Bowl XL. Ward also earned four Pro Bowl nods.