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Bill Polian elected to Pro Football Hall of Fame, Class of 2015

Polian, the architects of Super Bowl caliber teams in Buffalo and Indianapolis, made the cut as part of the Hall's new contributor category.

Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

Bill Polian has been elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame as part of the Class of 2015.

He made it into the class as a contributor nominee. Ron Wolf, the architect of Super Bowl winners in Oakland and Green Bay, was also a contributor nominee this year; he was elected, along with senior nominee Mick Tinglehoff and modern-era players Jerome Bettis, Tim Brown, Charles Haley, the late Junior Seau, and Will Shields.

You're likely well aware that Polian, now 72, was the general manager of the Buffalo Bills when the team was built into a perennial winner that ultimately made four Super Bowl appearances (though he had departed the organization by the time they played in the fourth of those). He is responsible for acquiring some of the most talented players in Bills history, many of which now stand alongside Polian in the Hall.

After working with the Bills from 1984-93, he took the reins with the expansion Carolina Panthers, where he worked from 1994-97 and guided them to the NFC Championship Game in just their second year of existence. Those four years yielded him the titles of President and GM with the Indianapolis Colts, where he began working immediately following his departure from Carolina.

In Indy, after drafting future Hall member Peyton Manning and several other greats, Polian would win his first Super Bowl in 2006. The Colts had some postseason struggles on his watch, but made a whopping 11 playoff appearances in his time there, as well - and that team will likely have several more Hall of Fame members to add to Polian's draft record, as well.

Polian becomes the eleventh former member of the Bills organization in the Hall of Fame, joining, among others, late team owner Ralph C. Wilson, Jr., head coach Marv Levy, and five players that were on Polian's Super Bowl teams: quarterback Jim Kelly, running back Thurman Thomas, wide receivers Andre Reed and James Lofton, and defensive end Bruce Smith.