Pro Bowl 2021 selections are in, and three is not a crowd when it comes to The Philadelphia Eagles.
Career-long Eagles’ veterans Fletcher Cox, Jason Kelce, and Brandon Graham have made the roster — all as starters.
VYING FOR A FRANCHISE RECORD: FLETCHER COX
Defensive tackle Fletcher Cox joined the Philadelphia Eagles in the 2012 NFL Draft. Starting his career strong, 2014 was his breakthrough year with 61 total tackles and four sacks, earning himself Second-Team All-Pro.
In 2015, his best year to date, Cox received another Second-Team All-Pro. He finished with 71 tackles, 9.5 sacks, and three forced fumbles. He was selected for his first Pro Bowl, in what would be a string of many more to come throughout his career.
Cox signed a contract extension with the Eagles in 2016 and earned his second Pro Bowl. For the third consecutive year, he made the Pro Bowl in 2017; however, he did not play due to Super Bowl LII.
The following two seasons were no different, and in 2020 Cox did it again. He ranks second among NFC 4-3 defensive tackles in both sacks and tackles for a loss.
He is currently behind former Eagles’ player Reggie White who leads the franchise with seven consecutive Pro Bowl berths.
FOUR-TIMER: JASON KELCE
Jason Kelce joined the Birds in 2011. Despite his short, stocky build, he became the first rookie in Eagles’ history to start all 16 games at center.
Similar to Cox, Kelce’s third season was the year of discovery. Pro Football Focus (PFF) graded him as the best center in the NFL.
Kelce earned his first Pro Bowl in 2014 after signing a contract extension with the Eagles. His second Pro Bowl came in 2016.
2017 was regarded as his best career season. He was named to First-Team All-Pro, was ranked the best offensive lineman by PFF, and won his first Super Bowl ring against the New England Patriots.
He made the Pro Bowl for the third time in 2019.
This season, the Eagles have struggled — that’s no secret. After quarterback Carson Wentz became back-up a few weeks ago, Kelce is now the last remaining offensive player to start every game thus far.
There have been rumors of Kelce’s potential retirement, as his current contract only goes through the 2021 season, making this year’s Pro Bowl potentially his last.
He will compete against his younger brother, Travis Kelce, who has earned his sixth Pro Bowl.
HARD WORK PAYS OFF: BRANDON GRAHAM
Maybe the most exciting for Philadelphia is Brandon Graham, named to his first Pro Bowl since joining the Eagles in the 2010 NFL Draft.
After coming to The City of Brotherly Love, Graham endured an ACL injury, almost left Philly for the New York Giants and changed positions twice.
In 2016, he finished the season with 59 tackles, 5.5 sacks, and two forced fumbles. PFF rated him as the ninth-best player in the NFL.
Graham reached a career-high with 9.5 sacks in 2017 and joined Cox and Kelce in the defeat against Tom Brady in Super Bowl LII.
This season, he has already racked up 42 tackles and seven sacks. He also made franchise history earlier this month after playing in his 156th (now 158th) career game, surpassing former teammate Trent Cole.
All three players [Cox, Kelce, and Graham] joined the Eagles under former head coach Andy Reid.
A COVID PRO BOWL
Unfortunately for these players, they won’t get the opportunity to physically play in this year’s Pro Bowl. The game, initially scheduled for January 31 in Las Vegas, has now been canceled due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
The NFL is now working on creating a week-long series of virtual matchups, which will be played on Madden NFL 21.
Our Birds will be joined by fellow NFC players including Aaron Rodgers, DeAndre Hopkins, Davante Adams, and Trent Williams, to name a few.