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C Frank Ragnow named to 2023 Pro Bowl; 9 Lions named alternates

Frank Ragnow is a Pro Bowler for the second time in his career.

After earning his first nod in 2020, the Detroit Lions center was named to the NFC team once again on Wednesday.

Ragnow is the anchor in the middle for one of the best offensive lines in football.

Not only has Ragnow helped plow the way for the team's most rushing yards (1,765) through 14 games since 1998 and their most rushing touchdowns (19) since 1981, but Detroit's allowed just 19 sacks this season, tied with Dallas and Tampa Bay for the fewest in the league. Ragnow hasn't allowed a sack all season long and has been flagged just twice. In fact, the former first-round pick out of Arkansas hasn't allowed a sack since the 2019 season.

Ragnow played in just four games last year because of a foot injury that required surgery. The same foot has bothered him since Week 1 this year, but he's gutted through the pain and managed to play 13 games at a Pro Bowl level.

Led by Ragnow and the rest of his offensive line mates, three of whom earned alternate spots to this year's Pro Bowl, Detroit ranks in the top 10 offensively in points per game (5th), total offense (4th), passing offense (8th), red zone efficiency (3rd) and sacks allowed (1st).

"When you watch the tape every week, (o-line) coach (Hank) Fraley and I are both amazed with what he's able to do right now," Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson said of Ragnow. "Honestly, when you talk to him he feels like he's not even hitting his standard or his mark. It certainly doesn't go unnoticed.

"He's doing a phenomenal job. We put a ton on his plate that people don't realize from a mental aspect. There's a lot going on both getting the protection identified but also in the run game. He loves coming in each week and getting all this stuff down. It helps the entire offensive line when he's in there because there's that sense of comfort that, 'Hey, he's going to get us right.'"

The Lions also had a number of players voted as alternates for the Pro Bowl, as follows:

Wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown, 1st alternate: Now in his second season, St. Brown has become one of the most productive and efficient receivers in the game. His 89 receptions on the season are the sixth most in the NFL, along with his 1,069 total scrimmage yards (974 rec., 95 rush). He's had four games with over 100 receiving yards and five games with at least eight receptions this season.

Tackle Penei Sewell, 1st: In just his second season, Sewell has become one of the most dominant right tackles in the game. Sewell has allowed just two sacks all season and ranks as the No. 1 run-blocking right tackle in football by Pro Football Focus. He's considered pound for pound one of the best athletes on the roster, which was evident by his game-clinching reception on a third-down play in the win over Minnesota Dec. 11.

Quarterback Jared Goff, 3rd: Since November, Goff has guided the Lions to a 6-1 record, and he's ranked among the top quarterbacks in the NFC over that span. During that stretch, Goff's completed 66.1 percent of his passes for 1,700 yards with 11 touchdowns, one interception and a passer rating of 101.5. Goff is the only quarterback in the NFL who's started the last six games and not committed a turnover.

Guard Jonah Jackson, 4th: Jackson has become one of the best guards in the NFL in just his third season in the league. A Pro Bowler last season, Jackson hasn't allowed a single sack in 10 contests this season and has been flagged just three times all year.

Running back Jamaal Williams, 4th: Williams has had a historic 14-game start to the 2022 season, leading the NFL with 14 rushing touchdowns. He's just two off the Lions' single season record of 16 rushing touchdowns set by Barry Sanders in 1991.

Fullback Jason Cabinda, 4th: One of the most versatile players on this roster, the former linebacker turned fullback does a little bit of everything for the Lions. He's one of the best fullbacks in the league, but can also play tight end, and he's one of Detroit's core special teams performers.

Punt returner Kalif Raymond, 4th: Lions head coach Dan Campbell recently referred to Raymond as an iron man for this roster. The reigning NFC Special Teams Player of the Week had a key punt-return touchdown in Detroit's 20-17 win over the Jets last week. Raymond's 14.6 average per punt return is second in the NFL. He also has 39 receptions for 454 yards on the year.

Tackle Taylor Decker, 5th: Decker year-in and year-out is one of the best left tackles in football and the most senior member of one of the best offensive lines in the game. Every week he faces the most elite pass rushers in the league, and he's allowed just three sacks in 14 games started this season.

Defensive end Aidan Hutchinson, 5th: A candidate for Rookie of the Year, Hutchinson leads the Lions and all rookies with 7.0 sacks. He also has two interceptions through 14 games. He is the only NFL player with at least 7.0 sacks and three takeaways in 2022.

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