Swann, Levy Make Football Hall of Fame

Marv Levy, who coached four straight Buffalo Super Bowl teams, and six players including longtime nominees Lynn Swann and Ron Yary were elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame today.

Also picked were first-time finalist Jackie Slater, oldtimers nominee Nick Buoniconti, Jack Youngblood and Mike Munchak.

Each of those elected received 80 percent of the vote from the Hall of Fame's 38-member Selection Committee which meets annually on the eve of the Super Bowl.

Eight other finalists — Harry Carson, Dave Casper, Dan Hampton, Lester Hayes, Art Monk, Bill Parcells, John Stallworth and Ralph Wilson — failed to receive the necessary votes.

Four Straight Super Bowl Losses

Levy's election comes 10 years to the day since the Bills' first Super Bowl appearance in Tampa against Parcells' New York Giants.

Buffalo returned to play in each of the next three Super Bowls, losing to Washington and then twice to Dallas. No other team has appeared in four straight Super Bowls.

"That should have put him in on the first ballot," said Bill Polian, who was general manager of those Buffalo teams and now runs the front office for the Indianapolis Colts.

Instead, Levy went in on his third chance. That still was faster than Yary and Swann, both elected in their 14th year of eligibility.

Swann's Steelers Won Four Super Bowls

Swann was part of the Pittsburgh Steelers dynasty that won four Super Bowls in six years. He was the MVP of the 1976 Super Bowl when the Steelers defeated Dallas, catching four passes for 161 yards including a 64-yarder for the game-winning touchdown in the 21-17 victory. For his career, he had 336 catches for 5,462 yards and 51 touchdowns.

Yary spent 15 seasons playing guard, the first 14 with the Minnesota Vikings, the last one with the Los Angeles Rams. He played 207 games and was selected to the Pro Bowl seven times.

Youngblood made it in his 12th year on the ballot. He played 14 seasons at and 202 games defensive end for the Rams. In 1979, he fractured his left leg in the first round of the playoffs but was fitted with a plastic brace and played every defensive down in both the NFC title game and the Super Bowl.

Munchak played 12 seasons at guard for the Houston Oilers, reaching the Pro Bowl nine times. He was the key to a line that kept the Oilers at or near the top of the NFL offensive statistical categories, including total offense in 1990 and passing offense in '90 and '91.

Buoniconti was elected as the oldtimers candidate, a category reserved for players who completed at least 70 percent of their careers by 1976. He was a linebacker on Miami's No-Name defense and a centerpiece of the Dolphins team that went 17-0 in the 1972-73 season.

Slater played 259 games over 20 seasons with the Rams in Los Angeles and St. Louis. He made the Pro Bowl seven times. When he retired, no offensive lineman had played in more games.