The National Football League enters its conference championship round this weekend. Gill Brandt, senior analyst for nfl.com, released a story Wednesday on the 2014 NFL’s All-Rookie Team. It’s a roster of 26 players that includes former Alabama stars, C.J. Mosley and Ha’Sean “Ha Ha” Clinton-Dix. Both men were instrumental in their team’s journey to the NFL playoffs.
C.J. Mosley, ILB, Baltimore Ravens
Ray Lewis was a tone setter. He was the heart and soul of Baltimore’s defense for 16 years (1996-12). Lewis accomplished numerous awards as a linebacker, including two Super Bowl championships and two AFC Conference titles. Ravens’ fans wondered who would fill his role, after Lewis retired in 2012. Rookie linebacker C.J. Mosley provided an answer in 2014.
Mosley isn’t a big guy (6-2/238 lbs.), but Baltimore saw his productivity at Alabama. It rolled the dice, and selected him in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft. Mosley’s learned from Terrell Suggs and Elvis Dumeril, and excelled this season.
He led the team in tackles (133) and posted three sacks, eight passes defended, two interceptions, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. Mosley’s 133 tackles was tops for all rookies.
Mosley’s long arms and lateral quickness have been assets for Baltimore’s defense in run support. The Ravens’ are fourth in the league in run defense, allowing 88.3 yards per game. His efforts in 2014 have earned him a Pro Bowl invitation and a second team All-Pro voting. Mosley was named to the All-AFC Team and All-Rookie Team by the Pro Football Writers Association.
Mosley was a stud in his four seasons at Alabama (2010-13). He accounted for 319 tackles, 6.5 sacks, five interceptions, 19 pass breakups, 24 passes defended, two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries. Mosley guided Alabama to a Southeastern Conference title in 2012, and two BCS national titles (2011, 2012 seasons). He was a two-time Consensus All-American (2012, 2013), and a Butkus Award winner in 2013.
Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, FS, Green Bay Packers
No.21 is a sacred jersey at Lambeau Field. It was worn by one of the best defensive back of its time, Charles Woodsen. Woodsen play both cornerback and safety throughout his career. He spent seven seasons at Green Bay (2006-12), but his finest one came in 2009.
Woodsen participated in 16 games, totaling nine interceptions, 2.5 sacks, four forced fumbles and three touchdowns. He left for Oakland in 2013, but ended his career on a high note. Wooden recorded 38 interceptions, 12 sacks, 15 forced fumbles and 10 touchdowns at Green Bay.
Green Bay selected Ha Ha Clinton-Dix with the 21st pick in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft. He had good size (6-1/208 lbs.), but concerns came from a lack of production in man-to-man coverage at Alabama. Clinton-Dix took his bumps, but possessed a veteran’s confidence.
He is second on the team in tackles (94). Clinton-Dix has a sack, six passes defended and an interception. He was clutch in the Packers’ divisional round playoff game against Dallas. Clinton-Dix registered six tackles and Green Bay defeated the Cowboys, 26-21.
Like Mosley, Clinton-Dix was a leader at Alabama. He collected 99 tackles and seven interceptions in three seasons (2011-13). He was a member of Alabama’s SEC title team in 2012, and a two-time national champion (2011, 2012). He was recognized as a Consensus All-American in 2013.
|C.J. Mosley and Ha Ha Clinton-Dix in the NFL|
|C.J. Mosley||Baltimore Ravens||10-6||133 TKLs, 3.0 sacks, 2 INTs|
|H. Clinton-Dix||Green Bay Packers||12-4||94 TKLS, 6 PBUs, 1 INT|