While the Green Bay Packers tied for the NFL lead in Pro Bowl players this season, two players in particular stick out as snubs, especially for their teammates. Players are ready to go to war for Corey Linsley and Robert Tonyan, who would almost certainly be Pro Bowl alternates in another year (i.e. if the Pro Bowl was actually a football game that was being played), but who are arguably more deserving than other individuals who did make the NFC’s team.
Does the Pro Bowl really matter? Yes and no.
For better or worse, Pro Bowls are held up at the end of a player’s career as a measure of their success and are often cited when making a case for or against someone making the Hall of Fame. On a more immediate level, incentives exist within many contracts — probably like Linsley’s, as he is on his second deal in Green Bay. (In fact, the Packers will pay out a million dollars more to Aaron Rodgers, Davante Adams, and Za’Darius Smith in 2021 due to Pro Bowl escalators.)
Plus, both of these players are due for new contracts in 2021, Tonyan as a restricted free agent and Linsley as an unrestricted free agent. Coming off a Pro Bowl season might earn them a bit bigger payday than they otherwise would have received, whether in Green Bay or elsewhere.
So yes, the Pro Bowl does matter when one zooms out a bit. And it’s still a joke that Tonyan especially isn’t on the NFC roster.
Packers celebrate first-time Pro Bowlers, lament those left out | Packers.com
Several Packers players have been sharing their displeasure with the Pro Bowl voting process after it left tight end Robert Tonyan and center Corey Linsley off the NFC team. Linsley's absence might be more easily explained due to his injury, but as we have profiled previously here at APC, Tonyan's snub (especially given one of the players selected instead of him) is inexcusable.
Packers designate C Corey Linsley for return from IR | Packers Wire
Speaking of Linsley and his injury, he started practicing this week and could return as soon as Sunday night. That would give the Packers a big boost on the offensive line and could shift Lucas Patrick back into a reserve role.
Green Bay Packers lose punch trying to force ball to Davante Adams | Packersnews.com (subscription)
The Packers ran the football successfully in the first half last Saturday, with 159 yards on the ground before halftime. After that, they kept feeding Adams the football in situations that were not advantageous, including RPO screens that Aaron Rodgers was checking to at the line of scrimmage. He must be better at taking what the defense gives him than he was this weekednd.
Titans-Packers: MVP stakes, the hopes, the coaching history – The Athletic (subscription)
The Packers and Titans beat writers break down Sunday night's matchup, which features plenty of familiarity between the two coaches.
Lions could be without several coaches vs. Bucs as team determines high-risk COVID-19 close contacts | NFL.com
Meanwhile, Detroit's coaching staff is being shelved because of COVID contact tracing. With this game scheduled for Saturday -- the fifth and final day of mandatory quarantine for such individuals -- that could cause some serious problems. Don't be shocked if the game gets moved to Sunday instead.
Paragliding Santa Rescued After Getting Caught In Rio Linda Power Lines – CBS Sacramento
We'll let that headline speak for itself.