Voters placed six Falcons players on the 2017 Pro Bowl team announced Tuesday night: quarterback Matt Ryan, wide receiver Julio Jones, running back Devonta Freeman, center Alex Mack, linebacker Vic Beasley and kicker Matt Bryant.
The six Falcons selections were the most among NFC teams. It’s the most Pro Bowl selections for the Falcons since six players were named to the all-star team for the 2010 season. NFL players, coaches and fans each make up one-third of the Pro Bowl vote.
Ryan, Jones and Mack each earned their fourth career Pro Bowl nod. Freeman is on the team for the second consecutive season. Beasley earned his first Pro Bowl selection in his second pro season and Bryant received the honor for the first time in 16 years.
The Pro Bowl is Jan. 29 in Orlando. The NFC and AFC will have 44-man rosters for the game in Orlando. Players are replaced on the teams if they are injured or still partcipating in the playoffs at that time.
Ryan made the Pro Bowl for the 2010, 2012 and 2014 seasons. This year Ryan leads the NFL in passing rating while throwing for 4,336 yards with 32 touchdowns against seven interceptions. The Falcons drafted him No. 3 overall in 2008.
This is the third consecutive Pro Bowl for Jones, who leads the league in receiving yards (1,253) in spite of missing the past two games with a toe injury. The Falcons selected Jones with the No. 6 overall pick in the 2011 draft.
The Falcons signed Mack as a free agent this season after he played seven years with the Browns. He represented the Browns on the AFC Pro Bowl team for the 2010, 2013 and 2015 seasons.
Last season was Freeman’s first as a full-time back after he was a utility player as a rookie. This season he’s rushed for 1,056 yards and 10 touchdowns. The Falcons selected Freeman in the fourth round of the 2014 draft.
Beasley was the No. 8 overall pick in the 2015 draft. After recording four sacks over 16 games as a rookie, Beasley leads the NFL in sacks (14.5) and forced fumbles (six).
The Falcons signed Bryant in December 2009 to replace Jason Elam. This season Bryant is 29-for-31 on field-goal attempts 48-for-49 on extra points. Bryant broke Morten Andersen’s franchise scoring record during Week 8 and also tied Andersen’s distance mark with a 59-yard field goal on Dec. 4 against the Chiefs.