Four Cal Players Selected in Pro Bowl Draft
HONOLULU – Four former Cal players – tight end Tony Gonzalez (Atlanta Falcons), wide receiver DeSean Jackson (Philadelphia Eagles), defensive end Cameron Jordan (New Orleans Saints) and center Alex Mack (Cleveland Browns) – will participate in the 2014 Pro Bowl to be played Sunday, January 26 at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu.
The 2014 Pro Bowl will be televised on NBC and can also be viewed online at NBCSports.com. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. ET /4 p.m. PT.
Under the new Pro Bowl format, players were selected in voting by fans, coaches and players regardless of conference. The selected players were then drafted by Pro Football Hall of Famers and alumni captains Deion Sanders and Jerry Rice on Wednesday. Jordan and Gonzalez will play for Team Rice. Mack and Jackson will represent Team Sanders.
Carolina head coach Ron Rivera and special teams coordinator Richard Rodgers, Sr. will coach for Team Rice.
Running back Marshawn Lynch (Seattle Seahawks) was also selected for the Pro Bowl but will be unable to attend due to the Super Bowl.
Ron Rivera and special teams coordinator Richard Rodgers Sr. will serve as coaches.
Selected to his first career Pro Bowl, Jordan finished the regular season fifth in the NFL with 12.5 sacks for a team that finished with an 11-5 record and reached the Divisional Round of the NFL Playoffs as a Wild Card team. Jordan added 2.5 more sacks in the playoffs to rank third in the league. He finished with 47 tackles and two forced fumbles in the regular season.
Selected to his second career Pro Bowl, Mack started all 16 games in 2013 to extend his consecutive games started streak to each of the 80 games possible over the first five seasons of his career (all with Cleveland).
Jackson, who was selected as an alternate, was named to his third career Pro Bowl, replacing Andre Johnson. Jackson finished the regular season with career-highs in receptions (82) and receiving yards (1,332) to rank ninth in the NFL in the latter, while tying a career-high in TD catches (9). Jackson recorded 25 catches of 20 or more yards ranking him second in the NFL and had eight of 40 or more to tie for third. Philadelphia won the NFC East title with a 10-6 record before losing in the Wild Card Round of the NFL Playoffs. Jackson’s Pro Bowl history includes being the first player selected to the Pro Bowl at two different positions in the same year when he was selected in 2010 as a wide receiver and return specialist.
Originally selected as an alternate, Gonzalez was named to his 14th Pro Bowl roster in his 17th and final NFL season, replacing Vernon Davis. Gonzalez finished the 2013 season with 83 catches for 859 yards and eight touchdowns. It was Gonzalez’ 13th season with more than 800 receiving yards and eighth with 80+ catches. In 17 NFL seasons Gonzalez amassed 1,325 receptions, 15,127 receiving yards and 111 TDs, all of which are ranked first among tight ends all-time over 270 regular-season contests.
Selected to his fourth career Pro Bowl, Lynch finished the regular season with 1,257 rushing yards on 301 attempts and a career-high-tying 12 rushing touchdowns, as well as career-highs in receiving yards (316), receiving scores (2) and total TDs (14). Seattle finished tied for a league-best record of 13-3 and will play in the Super Bowl on February 2.
Rivera and Rodgers helped Carolina to a 12-4 record and its first trip to the playoffs since 2008 after winning the NFC South.