Detroit Lion Frank Ragnow was selected as the starting center for the 2023 Pro Bowl Games on Wednesday. This honor comes after what the veteran says was one of the hardest years of his career.
Being selected for the Pro Bowl is a huge honor. It’s recognition from fans, coaches, and players, saying that you are the best player in your position. While it’s Ragnow’s second time at the Pro Bowl, he doesn’t downplay what it means to be selected.
“It’s a dream come true man. It’s incredible. Younger Frank would be going nuts. I try to be cool and mature and all that, but it’s awesome. I was sitting there in the hot tub the other day after I found out and I almost started crying alone in the hot tub, tough look. But, I kept it together. It’s special. There aren’t much ways offensive linemen, or really, individuals get recognized in this league. For that to happen, it’s cool.”
Ragnow has been playing all season battling a foot injury. For many weeks, he didn’t practice for the majority of the time, but still suited up to play on Sunday. You could never tell the pain the player was in, but Ragnow says winning has made the pain a lot easier to play through.
“There have been times after wins, where I hate to say it, just relieved I made it through the game. Thank God for my wife. She’s been there for me a lot. It’s tough, but winning makes it a lot better because losing is brutal.”
Ragnow is spoken very highly of throughout the locker room. The players love him, the coaches love him, and clearly, the League does as well. Head Coach Dan Campbell recognized Ragnow’s accomplishment in a press conference Wednesday.
“Yeah, proud of Frank, man, it’s well deserved. He embodies everything that we’re about, everything that he does, and everybody knows he’s been playing through some stuff as most guys have, but he just grinds it out. He never complains, and he’s a pro, smart, he’s tough, he’s physical. Obviously, one of our captains, so proud of him.”
Detroit Lions Alternates
Nine other Detroit Lions were named alternates for the Pro Bowl Games including Amon-Ra St. Brown, Aidan Hutchinson, and Jared Goff. But Ragnow was most passionate when talking about his fellow offensive lineman Penei Sewell, Taylor Decker, and Jonah Jackson. Ragnow went on and on during Wednesday’s press conference about how his fellow linemates deserved more recognition.
“I look around the league and I don’t know all these tackles, and I’m not trying to take away from a lot of these tackles. Penei Sewell is a tackle that we literally create game plans for. He’s part of the game plan. He’s a weapon for us. Taylor Decker has been what you want as a left tackle to a tee. I mean He went on a streak there, where he didn’t (allow) not even a pressure. That’s not a touch, not even a pressure, not even someone near Jared for four straight games, I think it was, or whatever it was. And he’s been mauling dudes in the run game. Jonah Jackson has got some of the sweetest feet in the league. One of the best punchers, one of the best run blockers in the league.”
Ragnow says whether or not they were selected for the Pro Bowl Games this year, he feels honored to play with three “elite” guys like them. He referred to them as his backbone for helping him get through the season.
Lions center Frank Ragnow (77), offensive tackle Taylor Decker (68) and guard Halapoulivaati Vaitai walk off the field after practice during the first day of training camp July 27, 2022 in Allen Park.
Frank Ragnow isn’t the only one who had an opinion on the Lions Pro Bowl Games alternates. Coach Campbell also thought more players should have been selected.
“Look, I can’t vote for my own guys, but we had some guys that should have been up there with Frank, but that’s life, and we’ll move on.”
The 2023 Pro Bowl Games are scheduled to be held at Allegiant Stadium in Paradise, Nevada on February 5, 2023.
Maddy Miller – Detroit Lions Beat Reporter
On Twitter: @madelynvmillerr
Photo Credit: Detroit Free Press
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