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Saturday, April 20, 2024

The California Aggie’s NFL All-Pro Team

The Aggie spotlights some of the best NFL players from the 2022 NFL season, including Patrick Mahomes, Justin Jefferson and Nick Bosa

 

By PATRICK FIGUEROA — sports@theaggie.org

 

With the end of the 2022 National Football League (NFL) regular season, the NFL Associated Press (AP) selects the top players from their respective positions to be members of the All-Pro first and second teams. In addition, 2022 was the first season in which the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA) revealed its own All-Pro teams. The Aggie will introduce its own All-Pro team that includes players that are on both the AP All-Pro team and NFLPA All-Pro team.

 

Quarterback: Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs

Mahomes continues to add to his impressive resumé as he led the NFL in passing yards, passing touchdowns and quarterback (QB) rating. He also helped the Chiefs win 14 games, granting them a first-round bye in the playoffs. This is the third time that Mahomes has made the AP All-Pro team in his career, a notable achievement. 

 

Running Back: Josh Jacobs, Las Vegas Raiders

Jacobs earned his first career AP All-Pro nod after rushing for 1,653 yards and 12 touchdowns. He is slated to be a free agent this offseason after the Raiders declined his fifth-year option prior to the 2022 season. Jacobs will likely be one of the most sought-after running backs during free agency. 

 

Wide Receivers: Justin Jefferson, Minnesota Vikings and Davante Adams, Las Vegas Raiders

Jefferson has made the AP All-Pro team every season since he entered the league three years ago. This was his first time making the AP All-Pro first team after leading the NFL in both receptions and receiving yards this season. The Vikings plan to start negotiating a contract extension with the star wide receiver this offseason. 

Adams continues to be one of the NFL’s best wide receivers, even after being traded by the Green Bay Packers to the Raiders prior to this season. He made his third All-Pro team after he had 1,516 receiving yards and led the NFL in receiving touchdowns with 14. Even with the expected departure of former college teammate and friend, quarterback Derek Carr from the Raiders, Adams will likely stay in Las Vegas for the upcoming season and beyond.

 

Tight End: Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs 

For the seventh consecutive season, Kelce has made the AP All-Pro team. He led all tight ends in receiving yards, receptions and touchdowns. With another impressive season at 33 years old, Kelce continues to add to his Hall of Fame resumé. 

 

Center: Jason Kelce, Philadelphia Eagles

Jason Kelce, the brother of Travis Kelce, made his fifth AP All-Pro team in his career this year. Kelce was the second-highest-graded center according to Pro Football Focus. The 35-year-old center has considered retirement in the past, but he continues to play at a high level. 

 

Offensive Guards: Joel Bitonio, Cleveland Browns and Zach Martin, Dallas Cowboys

Bitonio has earned his fifth consecutive AP All-Pro team nod. He earned an 89.0 player grade from Pro Football Focus as the Browns had one of the best-rushing offenses in the NFL. 

Martin has the most AP All-Pro team selections out of anybody that made it this year with eight selections. He was also a member of the 2010s All-Decade Team. With this resumé, Martin is a near lock for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. 

 

Offensive Tackles: Andrew Thomas, New York Giants and Lane Johnson, Philadelphia Eagles

Thomas made the AP All-Pro second team this season after posting Pro Football Focus run-blocking and pass-blocking grades above 80 this past season. The fourth overall pick in the 2020 draft class appears to be living up to expectations. 

Johnson was named to his third All-Pro team. Johnson did not allow a QB hit throughout the entire season according to Pro Football Focus, which helped Eagles’ young QB Jalen Hurts have one of the best seasons in his career. 

 

Edge Rushers: Nick Bosa, San Francisco 49ers and Micah Parsons, Dallas Cowboys

Bosa had his first AP All-Pro selection after leading the NFL in sacks. He also tied for first place with 90 quarterback pressures according to Pro Football Focus. Bosa wreaked havoc for the 49ers all season and has a chance to win the NFL Defensive Player of the Year Award. 

Parsons has played in the NFL for two years and has already made two AP All-Pro first teams. He had 13.5 sacks and tied Bosa for most QB pressures. He will be competing with Bosa to win his first NFL Defensive Player of the Year Award this playoff season. 

 

Interior Defensive Linemen: Chris Jones, Kansas City Chiefs and Dexter Lawrence, New York Giants

Jones had 15.5 sacks this season, earning a spot on the AP All-Pro team for the fourth time in his career. He also contributed to the Chiefs’ defense in other ways, including getting 17 tackles for loss and 29 quarterback hits. 

One of the premier nose tackles in the NFL, Lawrence earned his first AP All-Pro nod. He led all defensive players in QB pressures when lined up as a nose tackle with 29. The second-closest player, Miami Dolphins’ nose tackle Raekwon Davis, only had eight. 

 

Linebackers: Fred Warner, San Francisco 49ers and Roquan Smith, Baltimore Ravens

Warner continues to be one of the best linebackers in the NFL after racking up 130 combined tackles, an interception and a forced fumble. He is a force in both pass coverage and run defense with the ability to cover the whole field. It explains why he is a two-time AP first-team All-Pro. 

Smith made his third straight AP All-Pro team during a season in which he was traded from the Chicago Bears to the Baltimore Ravens. In nine games as a Raven, Smith had 86 combined tackles, seven tackles for loss and an interception. As a result, he earned a five-year contract extension worth $100 million for his performance. 

 

Cornerbacks: Sauce Gardner, New York Jets and Patrick Surtain, Denver Broncos

The only rookie to be selected to the AP All-Pro team, rookie Gardner had a historic season. He was a lockdown corner, giving up just 452 yards and 46 completions. He also led the NFL in passes broken up with 20. 

Second-year corner Surtain made his first AP All-Pro team after a season where he only gave up 468 yards and 45 completions. He also intercepted two passes to help the Broncos have one of the best passing defenses in the NFL. 

 

Safeties: Derwin James, Los Angeles Chargers and Minkah Fitzpatrick, Pittsburgh Steelers

The leader of the Chargers’ defense, James made the AP All-Pro team for the first time since he was a rookie. He made plays everywhere on the field this past season with 64 solo tackles, four sacks, two forced fumbles and two interceptions. 

After receiving a contract extension prior to the season, Fitzpatrick made his third AP All-Pro team. He tied with three other defensive players for most interceptions this season, and he also improved his tackling with 17 defensive stops, according to Pro Football Focus

 

Written by: Patrick Figueroa — sports@theaggie.org