The Pro Bowl rosters of 2021 were hilariously awful. While they are snubs every season, this season had some genuine head-scratchers.
Here is what the rosters should have looked like:
An asterisk indicates that the player was not included in the Pro Bowl roster.
NFC Quarterbacks: Aaron Rodgers – Green Bay Packers, Russell Wilson – Seattle Seahawks, Tom Brady* – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Lost Spot: Kyler Murray – Arizona Cardinals
The argument for Brady over Murray is simple. Brady had a more efficient passing season, tallied more total touchdowns, and was less likely to throw away games. Murray had 157 total yards more than Brady, but factor in exceptional catches by Christian Kirk (80-yard touchdown) and DeAndre Hopkins (Hail Murray) and it is not substantial.
NFC Running Backs: Dalvin Cook – Minnesota Vikings, David Montgomery* – Chicago Bears, Alvin Kamara – New Orleans Saints, Aaron Jones – Green Bay Packers
Lost Spot: Miles Sanders – Philadelphia Eagles
Sanders earned a spot through the NFC’s Madden competition, but Montgomery had a tremendous December to slip into the fourth running back slot. In his last six games, Montgomery averaged 5.16 yards per carry, rushing for 598 yards and seven touchdowns. He was a difference-maker as a receiver as well, catching four passes per week.
NFC Fullback: Kyle Juszczyk – San Francisco 49ers
NFC Wide Receivers: Davante Adams – Green Bay Packers, Justin Jefferson – Minnesota Vikings, Allen Robinson* – Chicago Bears, DeAndre Hopkins – Arizona Cardinals
Lost Spot: D.K. Metcalf – Seattle Seahawks
The production between Metcalf and Robinson is close, and you cannot go wrong with either, but Robinson gets the nod here. He was consistently productive with either Nick Foles or Mitch Trubisky, and he did not have a secondary weapon to draw away elite corners or double teams. Metcalf had a stellar season, but he was among the league-leaders in yards in single coverage.
NFC Tight Ends: George Kittle* – San Francisco 49ers, T.J. Hockenson – Detroit Lions
Lost Spot: Evan Engram – New York Giants
Yes, Kittle missed half the season. However, he essentially matched Engram’s production in just eight games. Kittle was also one of the best blocking tight ends in the NFL. Engram’s selection was indefensible with Jared Cook, Hayden Hurst, Dallas Goedert, and Robert Tonyan all being superior options.
NFC Offensive Tackles: Trent Williams – San Francisco 49ers, David Bakhtiari – Green Bay Packers, Andrew Whitworth* – Los Angeles Rams
Lost Spot: Terron Armstead – New Orleans Saints
Whitworth did miss seven games, but he was the best tackle in the NFC in that span. Armstead (and teammate Ryan Ramczyk) are great tackles, but they narrowly get beaten out by Whitworth here. Armstead has five extra games on Whitworth, but he did not play better than Whitworth did.
NFC Guards: Zack Martin* – Dallas Cowboys, Ali Marpet* – Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Brandon Scherff – Washington Football Team
Lost Spots: Elgton Jenkins – Green Bay Packers, Andrus Peat – New Orleans Saints
Martin and Marpet missed six and three games respectively, but they were excellent when they were on the field. Peat also missed three games, so his inclusion over Martin/Marpet is strange. Jenkins, to his credit, missed just two snaps on the season. Jenkins had a good year across 16 games. Martin and Marpet had elite seasons across 10/13 games.
NFC Centers: Frank Ragnow – Detroit Lions, Corey Linsley* – Green Bay Packers
Lost Spot: Jason Kelce – Philadelphia Eagles
Similar to the rest of the line, props to Kelce for playing all 16 games. Kelce was the lone consistency on the mess of an offensive line in Philadelphia. However, Linsley was elite in his 13 games. He is a massive reason why Green Bay is widely considered to have the top offensive line in the NFC or even the NFL as a whole. Kelce is not undeserving, but Linsley gets the nod here.
For the AFC offense, click here.
Tomorrow, we will unveil the defenses and special teams.