In just his second year in the NFL, Miami Dolphins wide receiver Jarvis Landry is setting team records and making a name for himself. Overshadowed by his former LSU teammate Odell Beckham, Jr. in the mainstream media since the duo entered the league in 2014, Landry has caught more passes than any player in his first two years in the league (194), more than even Beckham (187). Landry has also set the Dolphins' rookie receptions record with 84 in 2014 and the team's single season receptions mark with 110 this year.
Now, Landry joins Beckham and the rest of the NFL's all-stars with his first Pro Bowl selection. Added to the roster as an alternate this week, Landry becomes the third Dolphins receiver to earn a spot in the all-star game after his season season, joining legends Mark Duper (1983) and Mark Clayton (1984).
Landry spoke with Dolphins.com's Alain Poupart and the team's radio show on Thursday, discussing his reaction to the news that he was being added to the Pro Bowl. "So many emotions going on from the phone call to telling my mom, telling my family," Landry said. "It's just been an exciting time for myself and for my family. Hard work pays off."
Asked about who was more excited about the selection, himself or his mom, Landry laughed and replied, "Her reaction when I called her. I just called her and told her to pack her bags and she was like, ‘Why? Where are we going?' I told her we're going to Hawaii. She immediately started screaming, running around the house and [it] almost made me want to fly back home to Louisiana and just really tell her and really be a part of the celebration that they had."
Landry also mentioned when he talked to offensive tackle Branden Albert, who was also added to the Pro Bowl as an alternate. "Literally called him and he was like, ‘What's going on? My phone is just going off. I had no idea what was going on,'" Landry recalled. "I guess I kind of sprung the news on him and then just being able to talk to him about him coming back from a knee [injury] and people using his age, using his injuries against him and he prevailed through all of that. He came back and he played great for us."
Landry finished the season with 110 receptions for 1,157 yards and four touchdowns. He also had 18 carries for 113 yards and a touchdown on the ground. Landry, speaking about setting his sights on improving from 84 receptions as a rookie to breaking the team's record of 90 in his second season, gave credit to quarterback Ryan Tannehill and the rest of the offense, "I remember sitting down with you guys [the team's radio show hosts] at the end of the year last year, and talking about breaking the rookie record and being so close to somebody's record. I just took it to heart that I had a lot of room to get better, and just trusting the coaching staff and having that first season under my belt. The game slowed down for me a lot. And this year, I can't say enough about Ryan and the offensive line and everybody else that made it possible for me to break that record. And, to me, that was held by a great receiver. For me to break that record in two years, I'm excited to see what's next."
"I will never be content with the success I've had," Landry said when O.J. McDuffie, the "somebody / great receiver" Landry mentioned and who had previously held the team's record for most receptions in a single season, asked him what motivates him to continue to get better and to never have hit a rookie wall or sophomore slump. "I've always taken the field, the practice field, and approach every game like I have something to prove to everybody, not just to myself but to everybody. And that's been my attitude, my mentality, and I think that is what has allowed me to have this success so far. It's something I continue to use. I use the fuel of nor making the playoffs. Use the fuel of everything that we went through this past season. Use that to play the way that I play, and you can see that with the passion and the attitude that I play with."
Landry and Albert put two Dolphins on the field for the Pro Bowl, a game that had been without any Dolphins players prior to their additions. Center Mike Pouncey had been selected as an all-star this year, but had to back out due to injury.
The 2016 Pro Bowl will be held in Honolulu, Hawaii's Aloha Stadium on January 31. The game will be televised by ESPN, who will also televise the "fantasy draft" assigning all of the Pro Bowl players to a team for the game. The draft will take place on Wednesday at 7:30pm ET.
You can listen to the entire interview with Landry on the Dolphins' website.