Senior Bowl announces 2024 Hall of Fame Class, rookies of the year

MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — The Senior Bowl has announced its 2024 Hall of Fame class and its 2023 rookies of the year. The nation’s preeminent all-star game will host another star-studded group of inductees in Mobile.

ALGOP releases statement supporting Joe Biden on ballot

Five former NFL players who began their professional careers in Mobile at the Senior Bowl will be honored at an annual induction ceremony on June 30:

The inductees played in more than 700 total games and combined for 17 Pro Bowl appearances. The class has several local ties to the state of Alabama.

“DeMeco Ryans, the head coach of the Houston Texans, rookie of the year, Alabama great,” Senior Bowl Executive Director Jim Nagy said. “Going way back a little bit to 1979, Marty Lyons, great Alabama player, fourth pick in the draft in 1979, is in the Jets Ring of Honor up there with the New York Jets. Then staying in the state, Roddy White, the best football player in UAB history, probably the best receiver in Falcons history, him or Julio…”

“Carson Palmer, former Heisman Trophy winner and first overall draft pick out of the Senior Bowl. Eric Weddle, the great safety from the Chargers and Ravens, was on the All-Decade team of the 2010s, multiple All-Pro player, so it’s a great class.”

I-65 rest area closing in May; where a new stop will be

The Senior Bowl selected Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Puka Nacua as the 2023 Offensive Rookie of the Year. The former Washington and BYU star caught 105 passes for 1,486 yards, both NFL rookie records.

Two players were picked as the co-defensive rookies of the year: Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive end YaYa Diaby and Los Angeles Rams linebacker Byron Young. Diaby posted 25 tackles, 7.5 sacks and two fumble recoveries last season. Young recorded 61 tackles with eight sacks and two forced fumbles.

Nacua, Diaby and Young will also be honored on June 30 at the ceremony, which will be hosted by NFL Network host Rhett Lewis, at The Grand Hotel Golf Club & Spa in Point Clear, Alabama.

The Fourth Annual Senior Charities Celebrity Golf Classic will be held on July 1 at Lakewood Golf Club with the five Senior Bowl Hall of Fame inductees, the three rookies of the year and several other celebrities from the football world. This tournament will benefit the Mobile/Baldwin Athletic Partnership.

Quotes from the players:

Lots of competition for teaching positions at the new Baldwin Prep Academy

“Being from Alabama, it was a huge honor to get the invite and participate in the 2006 Senior Bowl.  I’m thankful to have played my last collegiate game in front of my home state fans.  This game provided me a pivotal opportunity as a draft prospect to prove myself against the best competition in college football.  Now as a coach, I continue to follow the game closely to evaluate the top talent in the draft each year.  This game helped me as a player many years ago, and it is still assisting players in reaching their dream of playing in the NFL.”

DeMeco Ryans

“I am truly humbled by this honor.  The Senior Bowl back in 2007 was a big stepping stone for my NFL career.  Being on the same field with the best of the best and more than holding my own gave me the confidence that I belonged.  Never in my wildest dreams would I consider myself a Hall of Famer and I am beyond thankful.”

Eric Weddle

“Being invited to the Senior Bowl was special because it gave me an opportunity to compete against the best guys in the nation.  Doing well throughout the week in Mobile drastically improved my draft stock.  I enjoyed learning an NFL playbook for the first time and meetings with Jon Gruden were intense and full of energy.”

Roddy White

For full inductee bios, click here.

For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to WKRG News 5.