Shaquill Griffin spent the 2019 season backing up a promise he made in June during offseason workouts, and as a result, he is Pro Bowl bound.
Unhappy with how his 2018 season went, Griffin vowed last summer that he would be better, saying "I've got to be more than just good, I've got to be more than great, I've got to be elite, and I've got to be that type of guy they can count on."
Griffin was all of those things during the 2019 season, which is why the third-year cornerback will play in his first Pro Bowl, having been named to the NFC squad as a replacement for Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore, who will not participate in the Pro Bowl due to injury.
Griffin bounced back from what he considered to be a disappointing 2018 campaign by getting himself into better shape—he reported to camp about 12 pounds lighter in 2019—and also by changing his mindset, saying his focus shifted from stats and accolades to being a better teammate and leader. The result was a season in which Griffin was Seattle's top cornerback all year, posting a team-high 13 passes defensed to go along with 65 tackles. According to Pro Football Focus, Griffin had the highest forced incompletion rate (21.2 percent) among cornerbacks.
"He has had a terrific season," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said last month. "He has been productive, he has been consistent, he has been really active. It's a whole step forward from where he was last year. He's playing like he's capable of playing. I really hope that this would've been year two. I think last year, he and I both realized it, didn't set it up the right way in the way we approached it. He fixed that this offseason and you can tell the results. He's been consistently on it. He's been fast, flying the whole time, the whole season. He has been really aggressive and wanting to challenge everything. He has had a great season."
Griffin's addition to the NFC team gives the Seahawks three Pro Bowlers this year, with quarterback Russell Wilson and linebacker Bobby Wagner having been named to the team last month. The Pro Bowl is this Sunday at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, a short drive from the University of Central Florida where he and twin brother, Shaquem, played before being drafted by the Seahawks.
Pete Carroll and the rest of the Seahawks coaching staff will coach the NFC team, the first time Carroll's staff has coached a Pro Bowl.
Go behind the scenes with team photographer Rod Mar as he shares moments from the Seattle Seahawks' Divisional game against the Green Bay Packers. Eye on the Hawks is presented by Western Washington Toyota Dealers.