With 11 weeks of the 2008 NFL Regular Season still to play for the NFL powers that be have decided that it is time for fans to start voting in the annual popularity contest, oopps, I mean Pro Bowl.
Maybe it’s just me but I think voting for people to be playing in Honolulu on February 8 2009 in late October 2008 is a bit premature.
Lets face it over half the players will be voted in on reputation alone, especially positions that garnish little fantasy football interest such as offensive and defensive linemen.
People going to vote are going to click on the likes of Jeff Saturday and Olin Kreutz because they recognise their names from previous Pro Bowls.
Who knows the Arizona Cardinals could have the best C in the NFL, but unless you live in the desert it is unlikey you can name him. Just for fun the Cardinals starting C is viewable on THIS LINK – did you honestly know who it was? Thought not.
Another reason I am cynical about opening the voting in Week 7 is that there is a helluva lot of football still to be played, and this means heroes (of week 1 through 6) becoming zeros and vice versa.
A few examples spring to mind following this rash of starting quarterbacks being hit by the injury bug. Lets first look at the Bengals. QB Carson Palmer is likely done for the year, and Ryan Fitzpatrick is now stepping in. Despite a 0-6 start the theory goes that Fitzpatrick could go 10-6 and lead Cincy to a playoff berth.
This would go un-noticed on the Pro Bowl radar as the likes of Peyton Manning will be a shoe in, with people likely voting for him already, despite a start that has been far from perfection.
Likewise the undefeated Tennessee Titans could throw up a horror show and end up 5-11, but the likes of DT Albert Haynesworth or even dare I say it Kerry Collins could be getting fitted for a hula skirt.
I have a few suggestions to make Pro Bowl voting a bit more sensible and a bit fairer to teams, players and fans;
- Before NFL fans are able to vote they should apply to the NFL via an online form. In that form they state the NFL team they support. Then when the online form is opened you CANNOT vote for players on the team you support.
- Then when you have collated the results for the fans you weight it so that the results from all 32 teams are given equal billing. That way the fans of each team are not penalised for the amount of fans they have, the % who have computers, or the teams that have fair-weather fans (did anyone say Patriots fans post the arrival of Tom Brady?)
What do you think? Please vote below and also give an opinion…….