CANTON, Ohio, Oct. 30 (UPI) -- Defensive end Bruce Smith heads a preliminary list of 133 players, coaches and contributors for election to the pro Football Hall of Fame's 2009 class.
The former pass-rushing specialist leads first-year eligible candidates of modern-era nominees.
Smith compiled 200 sacks in 16 seasons with the Buffalo Bills and Washington Redskins, and was named to the NFL's 1990s all-decade team.
Woodson, who played for Pittsburgh, Baltimore, San Francisco and Oakland, was named to the NFL's 75th anniversary all-time team. When he retired in 2003, he ranked third all-time with 71 interceptions.
Sharpe played on three Super Bowl champions -- twice with Denver and once with Baltimore -- and was an eight-time Pro Bowl player in 14 seasons.
He finished with 815 catches, 10,060 yards and 62 touchdown receptions.
The 2009 Hall of Fame class will be announced Jan. 31 in Tampa, the day before Super Bowl XLIII.