Travis Frederick has not allowed a sack or been penalized for holding.
“You’re jinxing me,” Frederick said this week.
Yet, the Cowboys center does not rank in the top two in Pro Bowl voting at his position. Carolina’s Ryan Kalil has the most votes followed by New England’s David Andrews.
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Andrews, a rookie, no longer even starts, having lost his job two games ago when Bryan Stork returned from short-term injured reserve. Kalil has allowed three sacks, been penalized for a hold and missed a game with an ankle injury this season.
Pro Football Focus ranks Minnesota’s Joe Berger as the top player at the position with Frederick second. Kalil stands third with Andrews 23rd.
PFF has Frederick allowing only one quarterback hit and seven hurries this season in what should result in a Pro Bowl berth for the second time and All-Pro honors for the first time.
“Travis has played well,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. “He’s a really good player for us, a leader of our offensive line, a great presence in the center of our offensive line. I think we protect him better this year. We’ve done a good job. I think each of those guys has grown individually; I think they’ve grown collectively as pass protectors. We collectively have not run the ball quite as well as we did last year. There are a lot of reasons for that.
“I think if you look at him play week and week out, he does his job on a play-by-play basis, both in the run game and in the pass game, and he is certainly someone our guys look too up front.”
Frederick, in his third season, said he has improved his pass protection.
“It’s been an interesting year, because as a group we haven’t been able to accomplish what we’ve wanted to,” Frederick said. “I think that I have been able to improve on a few things personally, but I still have a long way to go in my progression.”
The former first-round pick made the Pro Bowl for the first time last season, one of three Cowboys’ offensive linemen to earn the honor. He would love to go back this season.
“It’s really an honor to have been selected last year, to know that people respect you that way, your peers, other coaches,” Frederick said. “It’s the best of the best, and it’s really an honor to even meet some of those guys. Those are the guys I watched film on growing up and try and emulate my game after. So it’s really nice to get a chance to sit down with a guy like Nick Mangold and ask why he does this or how he handles a certain situation so I can better my game.”
Fan voting for the Pro Bowl ends Tuesday. The league will announce the 2015 Pro Bowlers on Dec. 22.