QB: Aaron Rodgers (GB), Drew Brees (NO), Eli Manning (NYG)
3 players I shouldn’t have to explain anything about are Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, and Drew Brees. They are special players. Eli Manning is the best 4th quarterback in football this season.
You can bring up names like Matt Ryan and Tony Romo. My response: they are game managers more than anything. Cam Newton is a rookie and is earning his stripes rather quickly, breaking 2 records along the way. Jay Cutler would have been in the conversation before his injury, and Michael Vick has yet to stay healthy to give himself a Pro Bowl opportunity. The only name I would argue for Eli’s spot is Matthew Stafford. He has thrown 10 more touchdowns than Eli, and 2 less interceptions. Their yardage is about the same. Actually, the more I look at the numbers, the more I believe Stafford should have gotten the nod. With the likelihood of Rodgers or Brees being in the Superbowl, he will probably play anyway.
RB: LeSean McCoy (PHI), Matt Forte (CHI), Frank Gore (SF)
Across the board, these Pro Bowl running backs deserve it and it shouldn’t be argued much.Shady McCoy has the most touchdowns. Matt Forte and his all-purpose yards. Frank Gore’s domination on the ground. These 3 can and did do it all.
DeMarco Murray didn’t start till mid-season and didn’t finish the season. He should be mentioned in the future. Adrian Peterson may very well be the best back in the game still, but the lack of a good team hurt his productivity, even before his ugly injury. I believe Forte’s presence in 12 games is more than enough to give him the nod. If he doesn’t play, look for Marshawn Lynch to get some carries in his place. I just think it took Seattle and Lynch too long to get things going. The first half was mediocre while the other backs produced weekly.
FB: John Kuhn (GB)
Green Bay doesn’t have a good running game. This guy can catch out of the backfield and share the load if needed, so perhaps his versatility made him the choice. Or the popularity of being on the best team of the regular season.
WR: Calvin Johnson (DET), Larry Fitzgerald (ARI), Steve Smith (CAR), Greg Jennings (GB)
I’m sorry, but to Victor Cruz: these guys are doing what you have done this season, and have done it. Nothing against Victor Cruz, of course he played at a Pro Bowl caliber level, but hey, do this next year and you might get yourself in. Megatron’s breaking out party, Fitzgerald and Steve Smith getting older but…better? Greg Jennings is that damn good. They got it right with these guys here.
TE: Jimmy Graham (NO), Tony Gonzalez (ATL)
Jimmy Graham marched onto the scene, as many of the Saints have this season. He is an exceptional talent that should be in this conversation for years to come. Tony G never gets old. He blocks and catches the ball with the best of them, and has done so for so long. Definite Hall of Famer.
Debatable? Not even close. Fred Davis is slowly becoming relevant. The Eagles rediscovered Brent Celek. Jason Witten is elite, but the production was down a bit. The only question here is, which tight end had the better season from the NFC South?
OT: Jason Peters (PHI), Joe Staley (SF), Jermon Bushrod (NO)
OG: Jahri Evans (NO), Carl Nicks (NO), Davin Joseph (TB)
C: Ryan Kalil (TB), Scott Wells (GB)
What does it mean if one team has 3 offensive lineman in the Pro Bowl? Just look at what drew Brees was able to accomplish this season. The Saints are 1st in passing and 9th in rushing and these 3 are a big part to the team’s success.
Jason Peters is said to be the best tackle in the business. Joe Staley is young but among the league’s best. Davin Joseph had himself another season recognizing his talents despite his team’s struggles. Ryan Kalil, another young guy. There’s a reason the Panthers extended his contract before the season. Scott Wells anchors that Packers protection in front of Rodgers.