K.J. Wright has an eventful offseason ahead of him. He’s got a trip planned with his fellow Seahawks linebackers (past and present) to an undisclosed location, he’s going to Washington, D.C. for an internship, he’ll be getting married, a honeymoon …
“The list goes on and on,” he told 710 ESPN Seattle’s Gee Scott. “… I’m a busy man.”
That list will also include Wright’s first ever trip to the Pro Bowl. The Seahawks announced last week that Wright as well as tight end Jimmy Graham were tapped as injury replacements for the Jan. 29 game in Orlando. Wright will join four other Seahawks defenders – Bobby Wagner, Richard Sherman, Michael Bennett and Cliff Avril – on the NFC squad.
The 27-year-old Wright had a strong case to be selected to the Pro Bowl outright after another impressive season, which included a career-highs in tackles with 126 and sacks with four.
“It feels great, man,” Wright said. “When I got the phone call. Coach (Pete) Carroll was the one that let me know about it. The first thing he said was like, ‘You want to go to the Pro Bowl?’ I was like, ‘Yes, sir.’ It felt good. All that hard work paid off; stacking these seasons on top of each other. It feels good to finally get the respect that I earned.”
The former fourth-round pick has racked up more than 100 tackles in each of the last three seasons, but his relatively lower sack numbers compared to pass-rushing outside linebackers have contributed to Wright being overlooked in Pro Bowl voting. Scott asked Wright if he wondered if he’d ever be invited.
“I knew I would make it. I knew that with the season I had last year, I knew that if I kept playing good, that they couldn’t deny me,” Wright responded. “Just keep stacking these seasons on top of each other and eventually people will see how good you are. So I didn’t have any doubts, and I just kept playing hard and just let the chips fall where they may.”
Check out the full interview to hear how Wright went from a Kobe Bryant-type trash talker to the more subdued player he is now.