Pro Bowl MVP 2014: Nick Foles, Derrick Johnson Take Home Awards in Hawaii

Steven Cook@@stevencookinFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 26, 2014

January 25, 2014; Honolulu, HI, USA; Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Nick Foles (9) throws a pass during the 2014 Pro Bowl Ohana Day at Aloha Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The NFL featured the first year of a new Pro Bowl format that is un-conferenced in 2014, and the Jan. 26 event in Hawaii ended with Nick Foles and Derrick Johnson each taking home MVP awards. 

Foles was announced the best offensive player, while Johnson took the honors on defense per a Sunday Night Football tweet:

The Philly gunslinger went 7-of-10 for 89 yards and a touchdown while splitting time with Cam Newton and Andrew Luck. He was named as the top offensive player despite playing for the losing Team Deion Sanders—all three Team Jerry Rice quarterbacks threw an interception on the day. 

Foles closed out the game for Team Sanders, playing the fourth quarter. After stalling in his first drive, he came out hot and led his team on a touchdown drive. A 12-yard score to Jordan Cameron was proving to be a potential game-winner at the time. 

The next time Foles got the ball, he couldn't add to his team's lead, and Team Rice would get the ball back to score the game-winning touchdown. Foles could only lead Team Sanders to the Rice 49-yard line, too far for a Justin Tucker field goal, and Team Rice went on to win, 22-21.

Despite failing to win, Foles joined elite Eagles company with the award per Eagles Insider:

Johnson stood out for Team Rice on defense, proving to be an unstoppable force at the linebacker spot for the winning team.

The Chiefs linebacker posted eight tackles on the day, while also forcing a fumble in his third Pro Bowl appearance. 

A funny—or unnerving, if you're a Chiefs fan—moment happened in the game, when Johnson laid a big hit on Kansas City teammate Jamaal Charles that NBC's Ross Tucker was able to catch:

One thing is certain—Andy Reid watched it with a grimace. 

The 2014 edition of the Pro Bowl seemed to be more entertaining than those in recent memory, largely because of the competitiveness of players like Foles and Johnson. 

Performances like those of Foles and Johnson are what makes the Pro Bowl fun—when players step up big and play inspired football. It certainly doesn't compare to playing a regular-season game for these players, but this year it seemed as if they came to play and acknowledged that bringing a competitive spirit would immensely help the Pro Bowl product. 

It's impossible to acknowledge every player who gave full effort in the offensive and defensive MVP awards—you could make a case for many players on both sides of the ball who could have won those awards. But there is no doubting Foles and Johnson made their respective impacts felt on the game.