KALAMAZOO--Philadelphia Eagles defensive end Jason Babin and Green Bay Packers wide receiver Greg Jennings were both selected last week to the NFL Pro Bowl for the second straight year.
The Pro Bowl begins at 7 p.m. Eastern Time Sunday, Jan. 29, in Honolulu and will be carried live nationally on NBC.
The former Western Michigan University Bronco standouts were each named Mid-American Conference players of the year, among numerous other college football honors, and both are natives of Kalamazoo. Babin graduated from Paw Paw High School, and Jennings from Kalamazoo Central.
Babin had a breakout year in 2010, his only season with the Tennessee Titans, for his first Pro Bowl selection. He was sixth in the league with 12.5 sacks in 2010, and this year with the Eagles, was third in the NFL with 18 sacks. He also had 40 tackles and three forced fumbles this season.
WMU's only first-round draft pick, selected 27th overall by the Houston Texans in 2004, Babin had brief stints with the Eagles, Chiefs and Seahawks before landing with Tennessee in 2010 and returning to Philadelphia in 2011.
Jennings was drafted in the second round by Green Bay in 2006. He was fourth in the NFL in the 2010 regular season with 1,265 yards on 76 catches and tied a career high with 12 touchdown receptions. He was on course to equal those stats in the 2011 regular season, but missed the final three games with a knee injury. In 13 games, he had 949 yards receiving on 67 receptions and scored nine touchdowns.
A major factor in Green Bay's Super Bowl XLV victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers, Jennings is expected to return for the Packers' run in this year's playoffs.
Jennings and offensive lineman Tom Nutten are the only former Broncos to play in the Super Bowl. Nutten, a lineman for the Broncos, 1991-94, played seven seasons with the St. Louis Rams, earned a Super Bowl ring in 2000 and returned to the Super Bowl with the Rams in a losing effort in 2002.
Players are selected to the Pro Bowl by a vote of fans, coaches and their peers.
The first Bronco alumnus selected to the Pro Bowl was Bob Rowe, defensive tackle with the St. Louis Cardinals, in 1968. Until Babin and Jennings were chosen in 2010, the only other Bronco selected was five-time Pro Bowl pick John Offerdahl, 1986-90, a linebacker with the Miami Dolphins.
WMU alumnus Greg Jennings is Super Bowl Champion | Feb. 7, 2011