The Associated Press announced it’s first and second All-Pro teams yesterday, with Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones making the first unit, while running back Devonta Freeman and fullback Patrick DiMarco were honored on the second team. It marks the first time for all three players that they made the All-Pro team.
Jones’ historical 2015 season led to his being the second-highest vote-getter at the wide receiver with 41 votes, behind only Pittsburgh Steelers wideout Antonio Brown (49). Jones tied with Brown for the league lead with 136 receptions, the second-most total in NFL history behind only Marvin Harrison’s 143-catch mark in 2002. Jones’ 1,871 receiving yards paced the league as well, also marking the second highest total in league history behind Calvin Johnson’s 1,964-yard mark set in 2012. Jones was also voted to his third consecutive Pro Bowl last month.
Freeman will also join Jones in Honolulu at the end of the month at the Pro Bowl, as he will be making his first appearance there. Freeman finished fourth in the AP voting at the running back position, earning a trio of votes to earn his way onto the second team. He briefly lead the NFL in rushing yards after Weeks Seven and Eight, but slower production in the second half of 2015 led to the Falcons running back finishing seventh in the category by year’s end with 1,056 yards. Freeman’s total marks the first time the Falcons have had a 1,000-yard rusher since 2011 when Michael Turner finished third in the NFL with 1,340 yards. Freeman shined as a dual threat out of the backfield with his 1,634 yards from scrimmage ranked fifth in the league and was the third highest total for any running back. His 73 receptions and 538 receiving yards were the third-highest among NFL running backs and his 14 touchdown receptions tied for the league lead regardless of position.
DiMarco earned much of the credit for clearing holes for Freeman and was named a Pro Bowl alternate thanks to his hole-clearing ways. He earned the highest grades for a fullback at premium website Pro Football Focus and was named to the All-PFF team this week. DiMarco started eight games this past year, finishing with career highs in receptions (13), receiving yards (110) and touchdowns (two).