The NFL announced Pro Bowl rosters Wednesday night, and seven Colts will represent the team in Las Vegas in January. Those seven players: Defensive tackle DeForest Buckner, center Ryan Kelly, linebacker Darius Leonard, cornerback Kenny Moore II, left guard Quenton Nelson, long snapper Luke Rhodes and running back Jonathan Taylor.
It's the most Pro Bowlers the Colts have had in a single season since 2014.
Buckner earned a Pro Bowl nod for the second time in his career (2018) and is in the midst of yet another strong season in the interior of the Colts' defensive line. Buckner has 6 1/2 sacks and ranks among the NFL's top 10 interior defensive linemen in total pressures (44).
Kelly earned Pro Bowl honors for the third consecutive year. He's the first Colts center since Jeff Saturday (2005-2007) to be named to three consecutive Pro Bowls. Kelly has been instrumental in a Colts run game that's second in the NFL in yards per game (157.0) and leads the league in yards per rush (5.2).
Leonard earned his third consecutive Pro Bowl nod and is in the midst of yet another massively impactful season for the Colts' defense. He enters Week 16 with six forced fumbles, three interceptions and three fumble recoveries for a Colts defense that's tied for the NFL lead with 31 takeaways. "The turnover thing is just freakish," head coach Frank Reich said. "If he continues at that pace these last couple games and with the production that he has as far as tackles and the leader that he is and the impact on how he raises the level of our whole team, I would just be absolutely surprised if he wasn't at the front of that race (for Defensive Player of the Year."
Moore is a first-time Pro Bowler who finally was recognized as one of the best all-around defensive players in the NFL. No player has been targeted more than Moore (105 times) in 2021, yet he's held opposing quarterbacks to a passer rating of just 78.4 when throwing his way. No cornerback has made more plays against the run than Moore, who leads all players at his position with 15 run stops, per Pro Football Focus. Moore also is the Colts' 2021 Walter Payton Man of the Year nominee.
Nelson is only the 54th player in NFL history to be named to a Pro Bowl in each of his first four seasons and is just the second Colts player to do so (Alan Ameche, 1955-1958). Nelson, in addition to clearing the way for Taylor, is one of six regular starting guards to not allow a sack this season.
Rhodes is a Pro Bowler for the first time in his career. He's appeared in 82 consecutive games and is a key, reliable player for Bubba Ventrone's special teams units. He's the first Colts long snapper to earn a Pro Bowl spot since Matt Overton in 2013.
Taylor led all players in Pro Bowl fan votes in 2021 and leads the NFL in rushing attempts (270), rushing yards (1,518), rushing touchdowns (17), rushing first downs (93), yards from scrimmage (1,854) and total touchdowns (19). The Colts are 8-0 when he rushes for over 100 yards in a game and he has three games with 170 or more yards – more than every other player in the NFL has combined in 2021. Taylor was among the first five Pro Bowlers announced on Monday.