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Browns honored by PFW/PFWA

Posted Jan 16, 2012

Browns offensive lineman Joe Thomas and rookie defensive linemen Phil Taylor and Jabaal Sheard were recognized by Pro Football Weekly and the Pro Football Writers of America.

On Monday, three Browns players received postseason recognition for their play on the field in 2011.

Left tackle Joe Thomas earned All-NFL team selection by Pro Football Weekly/Professional Football Writers of America. He was also named to the 2009 and 2010 All-NFL teams by PFW/PFWA.

Defensive end Jabaal Sheard and tackle Phil Taylor were selected to the PFW/PFWA All-Rookie Team.

Thomas has started and not missed a snap in all of his 80 career games with the Browns. In 2011, he blocked for a Browns offense that saw increased production out of the quarterback position.

This season, quarterbacks Colt McCoy and Seneca Wallace combined to complete 320 of 570 attempts for 3,300 yards and 16 touchdowns against 13 interceptions. They completed the most passes by Browns quarterbacks since 2002, had the most attempts since 1990 and recorded the most touchdowns and yards since Derek Anderson’s Pro Bowl season of 2007.

McCoy and Wallace were intercepted just 13 times, which was the lowest total since Bernie Kosar and Todd Philcox combined to throw just 10 interceptions in the 1991 season.

Sheard led all Browns with 8.5 sacks and was among the NFL leaders with five forced fumbles. He led all NFL rookie defensive linemen and was third among all first-year players in sacks. Sheard’s 8.5 sacks were the second-most ever by a Browns rookie. Former Cleveland linebacker Kamerion Wimbley registered the most sacks by a first-year Brown when he recorded 11 in the 2006 season.

Taylor registered four sacks for 14 lost yards and tied Carolina’s Thomas Keiser for eighth among all first-year NFL players in that category. Only Tennessee rookie Karl Klug registered more sacks (seven) than Taylor from the defensive tackle spot.

Taylor and Sheard became the first tandem of rookie defensive linemen to start all 16 games along the same front since Tampa Bay’s Santana Dotson and Mark Wheeler achieved the feat in the 1992 season.

Over the past two seasons, the Browns’ first and second-round defensive selections in the NFL Draft have gone on to earn PFW/PFWA All-Rookie Team honors. Defensive backs Joe Haden and T.J. Ward were selected to the All-Rookie Team following the 2010 season. Ward made it both as a safety and special teamer.

The players voted onto the respective teams by PFWA members and the editors of Pro Football Weekly.

Pro Football Weekly/Professional Football Writers of America
2011 All-NFL Team

Offense
Quarterback: Aaron Rodgers (Green Bay)

Running backs: Maurice Jones-Drew (Jacksonville); LeSean McCoy (Philadelphia)

Wide receivers: Calvin Johnson (Detroit); Wes Welker (New England)

Tight end: Rob Gronkowski (New England)

Center: Maurkice Pouncey (Pittsburgh)

Guards: Jahri Evans and Carl Nicks (New Orleans)

Tackles: Jason Peters (Philadelphia); Joe Thomas (Cleveland)

Defense
Ends: Jared Allen (Minnesota); Jason Pierre-Paul (New York Giants)

Defensive tackles: Haloti Ngata (Baltimore); Justin Smith (San Francisco)

Outside linebackers: DeMarcus Ware (Dallas); Terrell Suggs (Baltimore)

Inside linebacker: Patrick Willis (San Francisco)

Cornerbacks: Darrelle Revis (New York Jets); Johnathan Joseph (Houston)

Safeties: Troy Polamalu (Pittsburgh); Eric Weddle (San Diego)

Specialists
Placekicker: David Akers (San Francisco)

Punter: Andy Lee (San Francisco)

Punt returner: Patrick Peterson (Arizona)

Kick returner: Joe McKnight (New York Jets)

Special-teamer: Matthew Slater (New England)

Pro Football Weekly/Professional Football Writers of America
2011 All-Rookie Team

Offense
Quarterback: Cam Newton (Carolina)

Running backs: DeMarco Murray (Dallas); Roy Helu (Washington)

Wide receivers: A.J. Green (Cincinnati); Julio Jones (Atlanta)

Tight end: Kyle Rudolph (Minnesota)

Center: Mike Pouncey (Miami)

Guards: Stefen Wisniewski (Oakland); Danny Watkins (Philadelphia)

Tackles: Tyron Smith (Dallas); Nate Solder (New England)

Defense
Ends: J.J. Watt (Houston); Jabaal Sheard (Cleveland)

Tackles: Marcell Dareus (Buffalo); Phil Taylor (Cleveland)

Linebackers: Aldon Smith (San Francisco); Von Miller (Denver); Ryan Kerrigan (Washington)

Cornerbacks: Patrick Peterson (Arizona); Richard Sherman (Seattle)

Safeties: Chris Conte (Chicago); Chris Harris (Denver)

Specialists
Placekicker: Dan Bailey (Dallas)

Punter: Matt Bosher (Atlanta)

Punt returner: Patrick Peterson (Arizona)

Kickoff returner: Randall Cobb (Green Bay)

Special-teamer: Akeem Dent (Atlanta)