HONOLULU — Dallas running back DeMarco Murray caught a 20-yard pass for a touchdown and Carolina running back Mike Tolbert plunged into the end zone for a two-point conversion with less than 1 minute left to give Jerry Rice a win over Deion Sanders in the first schoolyard-style Pro Bowl on Sunday.
Baltimore’s Justin Tucker missed a 67-yard field goal on the game’s final play after missing a 66-yarder earlier in the game.
Buffalo Bills defensive tackle Marcell Dareus had five tackles, including two sacks. Teammate Kyle Williams had two tackles, while Jairus Byrd had one. All played for Team Rice. Mario Williams of Team Sanders did not have a tackle.
The touchdown and conversion gave Rice a comeback after Philadelphia quarterback Nick Foles threw a 12-yard touchdown to Cleveland tight end Jordan Cameron with less than 5 minutes to play to give Sanders a 21-14 lead.
The touchdowns by Cameron and Murray were the only scores of the second half in a game that had eight turnovers – including six interceptions – and nine sacks.
Foles was the only quarterback of six in the game to not throw an interception. He was named offensive MVP.
Philadelphia wide receiver DeSean Jackson and Carolina quarterback Cam Newton also had touchdowns for Team Sanders. New Orleans tight end Jimmy Graham and Cleveland wide receiver Josh Gordon caught touchdowns for Team Rice.
The Pro Bowlers were split up by the NFL greats in a new draft format meant to improve the game. The picks made earlier in the week created matchups that pitted usual teammates against each other and challenged Rice and Sanders to compare the all-stars against one another.
The result was a game that appeared more competitive than in years past, with some big hits and fewer shenanigans.
Jackson caught the game’s first touchdown pass from Indianapolis quarterback Andrew Luck. Luck threw the ball 36 yards into double coverage in the end zone on a flea flicker, where Jackson wrestled it away from Titans cornerback Alterraun Verner.
Kansas City’s Derrick Johnson – who had a big hit in the first half on Chiefs teammate Jamaal Charles – was selected as the game’s defensive MVP for Team Rice.
Dolphins hire Hickey
MIAMI — In their fitful, laborious search for a general manager, the Miami Dolphins finally found someone to say yes: Dennis Hickey.
The longtime Tampa Bay Buccaneers executive accepted the job Sunday, ending a search that lasted nearly three weeks.
Hickey’s hiring came after the Dolphins were rejected by several candidates. New England Patriots Director of Player Personnel Nick Caserio and Tennessee Titans Vice President of Player Personnel Lake Dawson turned down job offers, and Cleveland Browns Assistant General Manager Ray Farmer withdrew from consideration Thursday.
Several others declined invitations to interview as a replacement for Jeff Ireland, whose six-year stint as general manager ended Jan. 7 when he and owner Stephen Ross agreed to part ways.
Hickey has been with the Buccaneers for 18 seasons, including the last three as director of player personnel. He was their director of college scouting for six years.
He was not interviewed for Tampa Bay’s GM job when it became open after this season. The Bucs won four division titles and one Super Bowl championship during his time with them, but went 28-52 over the last five years and had spotty draft results during that span.
Hickey was among eight candidates interviewed, with Ross aide Matt Higgins and Executive Vice President of Football Administration Dawn Aponte helping the owner with the screening process. The other finalist was Dolphins Assistant General Manager Brian Gaine, who worked under Ireland.
Some candidates and potential candidates expressed concern about the Dolphins’ power structure, including the role of Aponte, who clashed with Ireland. Ross has said the new GM will report to him and will have autonomy in building the roster.
Hickey’s primary task will be to upgrade the roster for coach Joe Philbin.