UPDATED after talking to Coach Mike Smith at the Senior Bowl
Mobile – Falcons wide receiver Roddy White was added to the NFC Pro Bowl roster on Tuesday.
He replaces Minnesota wide receiver Sidney Rice, who has withdrawn from the game.
This will be White’s second straight Pro Bowl appearance.
“I’m excited to be heading back to the Pro Bowl for a second year,” White said ina statement released by the team. “My teammates played a huge part in my success this year and I have to credit them as well.”
White, who started the season by holding out for six days in training camp, has his third consecutive 1,000-yard receiving season. After his brief holdout, White signed a six-year, $50 million contract extension with the team.
White led the Falcons in receiving yards with 1,153 on 85 receptions and became the second receiver in franchise history to have three consecutive 1,000-yard seasons. White had a career-high 11 touchdowns.
“It’s good for Roddy,” said Falcons coach Mike Smith after watching the South practice at the Senior Bowl. “He’ll get down there and get an opportunity to reap the benefits and rewards of a good season.”
Last season, White moved into fourth place on the Falcons all-time receiving yardage list with 4,689 career yards. He passed Jim Mitchell who totaled 4,410 receiving yards in 11 seasons with Atlanta.
“I think Roddy is one of the more well-respected receivers in the league,” Smith said. “To have back-to-back Pro Bowl appearances only bodes well for him in the future.”
The Pro Bowl will be played on Sunday at Sun Life Stadium in Miami.
Mobile – Mastering the art of the “hotel lobby hang” is key to the Senior Bowl trip.
After blogging about Tim Lewis joining the coaching staff, covering practice, writing the notebook and going to media day, it was time to do the lobby hang.
It’s good to let your badge show so that people know you’re from the newspaper and that you’re not a scout or an unemployed coach looking for work.
You must find a spot off to the side where you can scan the entire room.
Then just try to look as cool as you can.
You see some of your longtime your sources, some folks see the badge and others just come up and provide information.
One agent I’d met last year came up and started chatting. He wanted to make sure I knew what players he’d signed. He also noted the local agent Todd France was having a really big season and then offered up some possibly valuable draft information.
“I’ll tell you what,” the agent said. “He’s not even my client, but I know the Falcons love that big kid over there (pointing). Perrish Cox, the cornerback from Oklahoma State.”
Now, I’m interested.
The NFL Network’s Mike Mayock had already alerted me to him, Florida State’s Patrick Robinson and Southern California’s Taylor Mays as possible first round defensive backs on the South team. Mays is a safety.
“So, Cox in the first round for the Falcons?,” I asked the agent.
“He won’t be there in the second,” the agent said. “And he’s not my guy.”
Unsolicited, the agent said, “He’s got three kids.”
Everybody knows the Falcons are looking for so-called “good character” players in the post-Michael Vick era. You can’t indict a guy for starting a family early, but the Falcons will want to know more about his family.
So the Falcons might have to do a thorough background check on Cox, who was also suspended for the Cotton Bowl. e apparently missed curfew by 30 minutes and fell out with head coach Mike Gundy.
Last season, the Falcons passed on Illinois cornerback Vontae Davis because of his “character” issues. He was selected one pick after they took Peria Jerry. He went on to have a fine rookie season with the Dolphins and made several all-rookie teams.
Cox is 6-foot and 190 pounds and went against touted receiver Dez Bryant in practice every day. (You know, until he got suspended.) He’s also an accomplished returner.
THE MAN IN BLACK: Former Falcons coach Jerry Glanville comes over and is talking to a scout I know. He saw the badge!!!
He speaks and I introduce myself.
“Having some fun down there now,” Glanville said. “That QB (Matt Ryan) can play. They need some corners though. When I had Deion (Sanders) everybody thought I could coach cornerbacks.”
THE TUESDAY PLAN: The North team practices at 10:30 a.m. My buddy Geoff Hobson went to the North practice on Monday. It was held at the same time as the South practice at Ladd-Peeples. The South was 15 miles away in Fairhope. I had to go to the South practice.
“Butch” Hobson told me that Detroit wide receiver coach Shawn Jefferson (former Falcons great) went ballistic on the receivers. Missouri’s Danario Alexander caught Jefferson’s ire, while he praised Clemson’s Jacoby Ford.
The South squad goes at 2:45 p.m.
The head coaches — Jim Schwartz and Tony Sparano — hold press conferences at 6:30 p.m. We can ask Sparano why he’s being a jerk about not letting his assistant coaches talk to the media about the players they are coaching. That information could really help out some kids. Probably some stupid Bill Parcells rule. Hope I get the first question at the press conference. “Coach what’s the rationale behind the decision to not let your coaches talk at AN ALL-STAR GAME?”