Rant: Pro Bowl Alternates Shouldn’t Count as Pro Bowlers

When it was announced that both Tyler “Snoop” Huntley and Derek Carr were named as Pro Bowl quarterbacks, I was astonished. There’s an argument to be made for Trevor Lawrence, but these two? I couldn’t believe it. One started the season on the bench and the other ended the season there. Combined, they have fewer touchdowns and more interceptions than Jared Goff, and yet, for the rest of time, their 2022 campaigns will be listed with the Pro Bowl asterisk… which is ironic in itself.

Rant: Pro Bowl Alternates Shouldn’t Count as Pro Bowlers

Patrick Mahomes, the best QB in the league, was voted to the Pro Bowl, but he can’t go because he’s going to the Super Bowl. Tua Tagovailoa, who actually had the most Pro Bowl votes, can’t go, because his brain is still recovering from multiple concussions. Joe Burrow simply opted out of going and Justin Herbert can’t go because he’s recovering from injuries of his own. Four quarterbacks, who earned Pro Bowl consideration this year, will not be in attendance for various reasons.

Guys like Ryan Tannehill and Lamar Jackson, who otherwise might’ve contended for a spot, either were or still are injured, and thus couldn’t sneak in. Deshaun Watson, even if he did play this well, was suspended for the vast majority of the season. That leaves only eight quarterbacks, and not the best eight, with a void for three.

Kenny Pickett, a rookie who underwhelmed, Mac Jones, who toiled under Matt Patricia’s “offense,” Zach Wilson, who couldn’t hold off Joe Flacco or Mike White, Davis Mills, who himself was oft-benched, and Russell Wilson, who was a shadow of his former self in Denver are among some of the AFC’s eligible quarterbacks.

The alternates who will be representing the conference instead? Trevor Lawrence, who was admittedly pretty good, if inconsistent this season, gets the starting nod. Not necessarily controversial, as he does seem to be on the rise. The other quarterbacks, however, are hilarious selections.

The second string quarterback, Huntley, did help get the Baltimore Ravens to the playoffs, but just about barely. This season, Huntley threw for 658 yards, two touchdowns, and three interceptions in six apperances. Now, that’s not his strength, he’s more of a rusher. However, in those six games, he only rushed for 137 yards and a score. That means, in total, he averaged 132 total yards a game, splitting three touchdowns with three turnovers. And yes, he got the Ravens to the playoffs… with a 2-2 record.

The final quarterback is somehow even funnier, because it’s Derek Carr. Derek Carr, who was benched after an abysmal performance on Christmas Eve and opted to leave the team. Carr, who was leading the league in interceptions when he was benched, is in quarterbacking purgatory, and will have to wear a Raiders helmet again this weekend, despite never playing with the team again.

So, am I upset that these three will be in the game? No. The Pro Bowl has been a sham for a long, long time, and I can’t even tell you the last time I watched. I think Darrell Green was racing someone. However, Pro Bowls do carry some weight. Being a “Pro Bowl player” will come up again when these guys are asking for contracts or being considered for the Hall of Fame. And I don’t want to watch football where someone like Tyler Huntley, who had one more passing touchdown than running back Christian McCaffrey this year, is considered a Pro Bowl caliber player.

Making a mountain out of a molehill? Sure. In the grand scheme of things, is there even a 0.001% chance that Tyler Huntley is a Hall of Famer? Not really. But in my opinion, playing in the Pro Bowl game does not make you a Pro Bowler the way that being voted in does.

I’ll get off my soap box now.


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