The 2010 NFL Pro Bowl rosters have officially been released, and the Patriots have cashed in with six Pro Bowl players. Here they are:
- Tom Brady, quarterback
- Logan Mankins, guard
- Vince Wilfork, defensive tackle
- Jerod Mayo, inside linebacker
- Devin McCourty, cornerback
- Brandon Meriweather, free safety
So, off the top, there's a few things to note about the selections. First, we'll talk about the numbers. The Patriots have six Pro Bowl selections, which ranks first in the AFC (in second comes the Baltimore Ravens with five). Over the course of the entire NFL, the Patriots rank second, with the Falcons checking in at first with seven.
Of the Patriots six selections, three have been honored as starters. Those three are quarterback Tom Brady, guard Logan Mankins, and nose tackle Vince Wilfork. McCourty, Meriweather, and Mayo will be bench players. Well actually, lets hope the designation between starter and bench player doesn't matter, because if the Patriots advance to Dallas for the Super Bowl, none of these guys will be playing.
I think most Patriots fans will be elated with the fact that Devin McCourty and Jerod Mayo have been voted in as Pro Bowlers. While they both certainly deserved the nod, a lot of us thought that they would get snubbed, as neither player is a household name quite yet.
The biggest surprise to get a Pro Bowl nod is safety Brandon Meriweather. While Meriweather hasn't had a bad season, he hasn't been nearly as effective as he was last season, when he recorded five interceptions and got his first Pro Bowl nod.
Going along with Meriweather's selection, the biggest Pro Bowl snub is clearly Pat Chung. Chung and Meriweather both finished second in Pro Bowl votes, yet Meriweather, who hasn't played as well as Chung this season, got the nod. Other notables excluded from the game include Brandon Tate and Rob Gronkowski.
Overall, I think most Patriots fans will be satisfied with a group of six Patriots headed to the Pro Bowl. However, if things go as the Patriots hope/think they will, everything surrounding the Pro Bowl will become meaningless.