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Johnny Knox

For other people of the same name, see John Knox (disambiguation).
Johnny Knox
Johnny Knox during the 2009 season.
No. 13
Wide receiver / Return specialist
Personal information
Date of birth: (1986-11-03) November 3, 1986 (age 27)
Place of birth: Houston, Texas
Height: 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)Weight: 190 lb (86 kg)
Career information
College: Abilene Christian
NFL Draft: 2009 / Round: 5 / Pick: 140
Debuted in 2009 for the Chicago Bears
Last played in 2011 for the Chicago Bears
Career history
Career highlights and awards
  • Pro Bowl (2009)
  • Special Teams Player of the Week (Week 4, 2009)
  • Special Teams Player of the Month (October 2009)
Career NFL statistics as of Week 15, 2011

Johnny Knox (born November 3, 1986) is a former American football wide receiver who played three seasons in the National Football League (NFL). He played college football for Abilene Christian University. He was selected by the Chicago Bears as the 140th overall pick in the 2009 NFL Draft. As a result of a devastating spinal injury sustained in a regular season game against the Seattle Seahawks in 2011, he decided to retire from the NFL on February 13, 2013.

Early life

After graduating in 2005 from Channelview High School in Channelview, Texas, Knox enrolled at Tyler Junior College. As a sophomore at Tyler, he led all junior college receivers with 884 yards and 12 touchdowns. rated him as the No. 9 junior college receiver in the class of 2007, and he transferred to Abilene Christian University to play for the Abilene Christian Wildcats football team. He went into his first season at Abilene Christian listed as a backup wide receiver, but he quickly moved into a starting role. He finished the season with 62 receptions for 1,158 yards and a school-record 17 touchdowns. He finished third in Division II in 2007 in touchdown receptions, while racking up the fourth-most receiving yards in a season in Abilene Christian history. He earned honorable mention Division II All-America honors.

While garnering more attention from defenses in 2008, Knox still racked up 56 receptions for 1,069 yards and 13 touchdowns. Knox helped Abilene Christian start 11–0 before losing in the third round of the Division II playoffs. His 30 touchdown receptions in two seasons were the most in Abilene Christian history, and he earned second team All-America honors in 2008. After the 2008 season, Knox was invited to participate in the 2009 Texas vs The Nation all-star game, where he had three receptions for 55 yards and caught a TD pass from David Johnson in a losing effort for the Texas team.[1]

Professional career

2009 NFL Combine

Chicago Bears

Knox joined the Chicago Bears after being chosen in the fifth round of the 2009 NFL Draft. He caught his first NFL pass, a 68-yard reception, on September 13, 2009 against the Green Bay Packers. During the second game of the 2009 season (against the Pittsburgh Steelers), Knox recorded his first NFL touchdown catch on a key third down to tie the game up 14–14. He recorded another touchdown against the Seattle Seahawks, a seven-yard reception. In the fourth game of the season, against the Detroit Lions, he scored a touchdown on a 102-yard kickoff return.[2] Two weeks later, after a bye week, Knox caught a 60-yard touchdown from Jay Cutler. On November 29, 2009, Knox returned a kickoff 77 yards to set up a Bears field goal versus the Vikings.

Against the Vikings in 2009, Knox sustained a season-ending ankle injury, finishing the year with 45 receptions for 527 yards and five touchdowns. Knox ranked second in the NFL for return yard average with 29.0.[3] On January 25, 2010, Knox was selected to the NFC roster for the 2010 Pro Bowl, replacing Minnesota's Percy Harvin, who withdrew due to injury concerns.[4] Knox returned four kicks for 103 yards in his Pro Bowl debut. He was also targeted on two passes as a wide receiver, but failed to log a reception.[5]

In 2010, Knox led the Bears in receiving yards (960), and tied for first in the team for receptions (51) and receiving touchdowns (5). In 2011, he led the Bears in receiving yards (727) and ranked second in the NFL in yards per reception (19.6).[2]

On December 18, 2011, during a game against Seattle, Knox sustained a serious back injury after attempting to recover his own fumble and clashing with Anthony Hargrove. Knox required immediate surgery in order to stabilize an injured vertebra, but maintained sensation in all limbs following the incident.[6] He was placed on injured reserve on December 19, ending his season.[7]

Knox was eventually placed on the "Physically Unable-to Perform" list at the start of 2012.[8] As a result, Knox was out for the first six weeks of the season and was eligible to return on October 22 when the Bears played the Detroit Lions.[9] He did not meet this deadline and was unable to play for the entire 2012 season.[10]

Knox was released by the Bears on February 12, 2013,[11] and announced his retirement on February 13, 2013.[12]

Personal life

Knox and his wife SanDerriqua have two children.[13] On June 16 and 17, 2012 Knox spoke and was interviewed at Willow Creek Community Church as a special for Father's Day.[14] He talked about the injury, his kids, his father, and his faith.


External links

  • Chicago Bears bio
  • Abilene Christian Wildcats bio
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