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Eric Weddle Feels Like He's Having His Best Season Ever


Eric Weddle went to three Pro Bowls when he was with the San Diego Chargers – in 2011, 2013 and 2014.

He wasn't as good in any of those seasons, Weddle says, as he's been in his first year with the Ravens.

That's what makes Weddle's snub from this year's Pro Bowl a little tough to swallow. Though he's saying all the right things about how it doesn't matter, it appeared during Wednesday's press conference that Weddle felt worthy of the honor.

"Do I think I played one of my best seasons? Yes. Do I think maybe the best? Yeah," Weddle said Wednesday.

"But I don't have any animosity towards the other guys that make it. I don't know them from each game. I'm buddies with everybody. It is what is it is. I'm not going to waste time or energy spent on something I can't control."

Weddle was beaten out at safety on the AFC roster by the Kansas City Chiefs' Eric Berry, New England Patriots' Devin McCourty and Oakland Raiders' Reggie Nelson. Weddle has the best stats of the three.

Here are Weddle's stats from his previous Pro Bowl years:

2011: 88 tackles, 11 passes defensed, seven interceptions
2013: 115 tackles, one sack, nine passes defensed, two interceptions
2014: 114 tackles, eight passes defensed, one interception, two forced fumbles

Weddle's impact this year has been so much bigger than the stat book shows. He has transformed the Ravens secondary and taken a strong leadership role on the defense. That's something the Pro Bowl voters may not have taken into account enough, but Weddle's teammates certainly do.

"You do not get a chance to see the kind of leader he is, the type of person [he is]," quarterback Joe Flacco said. "It is not easy to come off of a new team, come in here and try to prove to everybody, 'I belong here; I'm a good player.' And at the same time, be a leader right away.

"That is the thing you can feel from Eric: He has come in here, and he has not been bashful. He has made a right impact right away in leading this football team. How he plays on the field, that speaks for itself. Of course he should be there [in the Pro Bowl]."

When the Chargers allowed Weddle to walk this offseason, some pundits wrote that it was a sign that Weddle's best days were behind him. After the season he's had, even Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger recognizes that's not true.

"I know Weddle is back there playing some really good football," Roethlisberger said. "I know he is making San Diego eat some crow after getting rid of him, and he is loving every minute of that."

At the end of the day, Weddle is turning the page to the Steelers, a game which he showed infectious excitement for when speaking Wednesday.

"I've been around a long time," Weddle said. "I know what my teammates and the organization think of me and what I've brought to this team. At the end of the day, that's really all that matters."

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