Florham Park, NJ – Nobody watches the ProBowl…and by nobody, I mean a very slim majority of the NFL watching public. Still, being selected to play amongst the NFL’s best is an honor. The NFL is trying to garner interest in the pre-Super Bowl event by mixing the conferences. On January 22 live on the NFL Network, Pro Hall of Famers Deion Sanders and Jerry Rice respectively will play the general managers and draft the teams. It means that it’s possible for Russell Wilson to play on the same team as J.J. Watt. The players who will have the honor to play in this speciality game were selected tonight.
I scrolled down the offensive Pro Bowl roster on NFL.com and I didn’t see anyone from the Jets…as expected. Then I went through the defensive Pro Bowl roster expecting to see some Jets, particularly Muhammad Wilkerson. I remember Rex joking in the beginning of the season that Mo was really the face of the franchise, but he didn’t quite fit the prototype.
I scrolled all the way down and Big Mo wasn’t on the Pro Bowl roster. So my next click was naturally, Pro Bowl snubs. That’s when the Jets defensive end’s name appeared. Greg Hardy, Cameron Jordan, Robert Quinn, Cameron Wake, J.J. Watt, Mario Williams were all picked over Wilkerson. However, Wilkerson will be the first alternate for defensive end. (Nick Mangold is the first alternate for center.) Notably, Mo’s buddies on the defensive line rookie Shelton Richardson and Damon “Snacks” Harrison also won’t be making the trip to Hawaii.
Mo has had 10.5 sacks and 42 tackles so far this season. The 24-year-old New Jersey native is a powerhouse rush defender as well as a beast on pass defense. He was voted by his teammates the Curtis Martin award for Most Valuable Player earlier this week.
Just hours before the Pro Bowl roster was announced at 9 PM Friday night, Rex Ryan said, “I would be shocked if he isn’t on that list….Obviously, if Mo doesn’t make it, I don’t get it. It (will be) personal, somebody doesn’t like Mo Wilkerson for some reason.”
I say, don’t worry, Mo. Leo DiCaprio is snubbed all the time and he’s the best.
Rex also believed Nick Folk, who has only missed two field goals all year, would be selected today, but wasn’t. (Hey, the Ravens’ Justin Tucker is pretty great…despite single “footedly” kicking the Jets out of playoff contention last week.)
The Pro Bowl will be played under its new format on January 26, the Sunday before the Super Bowl.