The terms “All-Pro” and “Pro Bowler” get used interchangeably, but they’re much different.
To be named to the Associated Press All-Pro team means you’re the absolute best at your position that season. One player for each spot.
Being a unanimous selection means you’ve had an absolutely dominant season, and only two players got that honor this season: New Orleans Saints receiver Michael Thomas and New England Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore. It seems to be a precursor for Gilmore to win NFL defensive player of the year. The same voters who choose the All-Pro team also pick major awards like DPOY and MVP.
Here are the highlights from the 2019 team:
Lamar Jackson leads the offense
It’s no surprise that Jackson, the Ravens’ dynamic star, was the quarterback on the All-Pro team. It would be a shock if he’s not named MVP. The surprise might be that Jackson wasn’t a unanimous pick. Jackson got 47 of the 50 votes. Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson got the other three.
Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey had an odd double. He was named the first-team running back and first-team flex position, which is a relatively new spot on the team to reflect the changes in how teams use personnel. McCaffrey was the third player to have 1,000 yards rushing and 1,000 yards receiving in the same season.
Receiver had a surprise pick. Thomas, who set the NFL record for receptions in a season, was obvious. The second spot went to Houston Texans receiver DeAndre Hopkins, who was 11th in the NFL with 1,165 receiving yards and posted just seven touchdowns. It was a bit of a down season by Hopkins’ standards.
Here’s the offense:
QB: Lamar Jackson
RB: Christian McCaffrey
Flex: Christian McCaffrey
WR: DeAndre Hopkins, Michael Thomas
TE: George Kittle
OT: Ryan Ramczyk, Ronnie Stanley
OG: Zack Martin, Quenton Nelson
C: Jason Kelce
Stephon Gilmore heads up the defense
Gilmore has had a fantastic season, though Miami receiver DeVante Parker had a good game against him in Week 17. Gilmore has been the best player on a very good New England defense and he seems set to win defensive player of the year.
Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald and Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner were named All-Pro for the fifth time. Two players acquired in midseason trades, Ravens cornerback Marcus Peters and Steelers safety Minkah Fitzpatrick, made the team too.
Here’s is the defense and specialists:
Edge rushers: Chandler Jones, T.J. Watt
Interior linemen: Aaron Donald, Cam Heyward
LB: Demario Davis, Eric Kendricks, Bobby Wagner
CB: Stephon Gilmore, Tre’Davious White
S: Jamal Adams, Minkah Fitzpatrick
DB: Marlon Humphrey, Tyrann Mathieu, Marcus Peters
K: Justin Tucker
P: Brett Kern
KR: Cordarrelle Patterson
PR: Deonte Harris
ST: Matthew Slater
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