Six Former Vols Make NFL Pro Bowl Roster

Thursday, December 27, 2012 - by special report to chattanoogan.com

A school-record tying six former Vols made the NFL Pro Bowl as the rosters were announced on Wednesday night. Selected to the league's all-star game were strong safety Eric Berry, punter Dustin Colquitt, running back Arian Foster, quarterback Peyton Manning, linebacker Jerod Mayo and tight end Jason Witten.

Five of the six: Berry, Colquitt, Foster, Manning and Mayo have been selected as starters.

 

With six selections, Tennessee is tied for having the most former players of any school in the nation. Along with the Vols, Georgia and Miami (Fla.) also have six products in the Pro Bowl.

 

» ALL-TIME VOLS IN PRO BOWL

The record of six former Vols selected to the Pro Bowl was set in 2011 with a very similar make-up to the 2013 selections. Two years ago, lineman Chad Clifton was selected while Colquitt, makes his first Pro Bowl this year. The other five picks also played in the 2011 game.

It is Berry's second Pro Bowl as he also made it in 2011. Foster has been chosen for the third year in a row. Manning is playing in his 12th Pro Bowl, first while playing for the Broncos. Manning had been chosen every year from 2002 through 2011 before sitting out the 2012 season.

Like Berry, Mayo also makes his second Pro Bowl, having also played in the 2011 event. Witten will play in his eighth Pro Bowl, all in the last nine years. He made every game from 2005-11.

Here are some capsules on the players from their official NFL team websites:

From KCChiefs.com

Berry has been designated a Pro Bowl starter. This season he has started all 15 contests for the club, recording 80 tackles (68 solo), 9.0 tackles for loss, one interception and 10 passes defensed. His career numbers include 206 tackles (150 solo), 2.0 sacks (-11.0 yards), five interceptions for 102 yards with one touchdown return, 23 passes defensed and one forced fumble.

Colquitt set a single-season franchise record with 42 punts inside the 20-yard line, heading into Week 17 and is now tied for second place in NFL history for most punts inside the 20-yard line in a single season behind Arizona P Dave Zastudil's 2012 mark of 44. He has punted 75 times for 3,514 yards, marking the seventh-consecutive time in his eight-year career that he has punted for more than 3,000 yards in a single season. He has a gross average of 46.85 yards per kick, the highest gross average of his career, and carries a 40.25 net average, trailing only his single-season career-best 40.78 net average in 2009. To go along with his 42 punts inside the 20, he has seven touchbacks and a season-long punt of 71 yards.

From HoustonTexans.com

Foster ranks second in the AFC with 1,328 rushing yards and leads the NFL with 14 rushing touchdowns and 15 total touchdowns.

From DenverBroncos.com

Manning's 12 Pro Bowl selections are the most for a quarterback in NFL history. He is also the first quarterback to make a Pro Bowl one year removed from missing a full season due to injury or illness. On the honor: "It's a tremendous honor and I am very humbled to receive this recognition. Being voted to the Pro Bowl by your opponents, their coaches and of course the fans means a great deal to me, especially when you consider how many other quarterbacks in the AFC are having outstanding seasons. This recognition shows that our offensive line did a great job with protection. It shows that our wide receivers and tight ends made a lot of plays."

» Manning On NFL Network

 

From Patriots.com

Mayo earned his second Pro Bowl honor after being selected for the first time in 2010. Mayo enters the final week of the season with a team-leading 179 total tackles. He is the first Patriots player to start his career with five straight 100-tackle seasons and his five straight 100-tackle seasons are tied with Lawyer Milloy and Vincent Brown for second, behind the six straight 100-tackle seasons by Fred Marion. Mayo has registered 10 or more tackles in 10 of the first 15 games to tie a career-high. He also had ten 10-tackle games in 2010.

From DallasCowboys.com

Witten is headed back to Hawaii for the eighth time in his career after missing last year. Witten, who is a backup this year for the NFC squad, is now tied for sixth on the Cowboys' list of Pro Bowlers with eight, alongside Emmitt Smith. As for Witten, there was a chance he might not play at all this year after suffering a lacerated spleen injury in the first preseason game. While it was decided surgery wasn't needed, Witten rushed back to play in the first game, where he had just two catches for 10 yards. After three games, Witten had eight catches and a handful of dropped passes, clearly showing he wasn't himself.

But he more than turned things around, recording games of 13 and then 18 catches in a game, Witten went on to record more catches this year than any tight end in NFL history, surpassing Tony Gonzalez' record of 102 catches set in 2004.

Witten is up to 103 with a game to play and could even break Michael Irvin's Cowboys' single-season record of 111 set in 2005.

(E-mail Stan Crawley at wscrawley@earthlink.net)


Winter Weather Cancels Frost Classic

A blast of winter weather in the Scenic City has forced the Chattanooga Mocs softball team to cancel the annual Frost Classic this weekend at Frost Stadium. “This is the first time in about 20 years that we’ve had to cancel the tournament,” head coach Frank Reed said. “We were really looking forward to opening our home campaign and bringing in talented teams but the teams’ ... (click for more)

Vandy's Torrid Shooting Burns Vols, 73-65

KNOXVILLE, Tenn.  – Vanderbilt made 13 consecutive field goals to close the game and defeated Tennessee, 73-65, Thursday night at Thompson-Boling Arena. The Vols (14-13, 6-9 SEC) led by as many as 13 points in the second half, but Vanderbilt (16-12, 6-9) rallied while shooting 84.2 percent from the floor in the second half to gain a split of the regular-season series ... (click for more)

FCC Votes 3-2 To Approve EPB's Request To Expand Its Broadband Offerings

The Federal Communications Commission voted 3-2 on Thursday to allow EPB to expand its broadband offerings to neighboring communities. Chairman Tom Wheeler and two other Democrats were in favor, while the two Republican members said the agency was acting illegally in overriding state law. EPB's phone, Internet and TV offerings have been far more successful than expected and ... (click for more)

Hamilton County Schools, UTC To Close Friday; Other Closings Announced

Due to remaining snow on some of the roadways and the potential for black ice overnight and into the morning, Hamilton County Schools will be closed on  Friday . School Age Child Care will also be closed. Employees who accrue vacation will report by  10 a.m.  and maintenance employees will report on regular schedule.  All classes are being ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Has Always Been A Battleground Between Good And Evil

From the thousands slain in nearby Chickamauga Battlefield during the Civil War…  To the launching point of the Cherokee Indian’s Trail of Tears…  To the lunch counter sit-ins led by Howard School students — the only high school student sit-ins in the nation — during the Civil Rights Movement…  To Walter Cronkite calling the polluted Southern industrial town ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: They Are Americans, Too

Roger Dean Kiser is something of a legend. Aside from being one of the best story-tellers I know of – I’ve read his works for years – the fact he came upon it honest, like Chattanooga’s Roger Allan Wade, makes him kind of special. Again, I’ve followed him for a long time. By the time he was four, he had been abandoned by parents and grandparents alike. The state of Florida placed ... (click for more)