With two weeks before official fan voting is closed, plenty of players on the NFC North-leading Bears are in a prime spot to be recognized as Pro Bowlers, in accordance with the fan vote. When you play well, sometimes your individual talent is recognized. When you play well and are on a good team, well, the fan vote won’t let you down.
At the latest count, Khalil Mack (outside linebacker), Eddie Jackson (free safety), Kyle Fuller (cornerback), and Tarik Cohen (return specialist) are all the leading vote-getters at their respective positions in the NFC. Not lagging far behind is Roquan Smith (second among inside linebackers), Akiem Hicks (sixth among defensive tackles), Prince Amukamara (sixth among cornerbacks), and Trey Burton (sixth among tight ends).
As it stands, based on the fan vote, Burton is the only man that has to make a major jump to the top four in voting among tight ends to be a Pro Bowler.
(The below image does not reflect Mack, Jackson, Fuller, and Cohen’s updated standing.)
Keep in mind, this is just the fan vote, which accounts for only one-third towards determining the 88 NFL players eventually voted in. Coaches and players have a say, too, and they will vote on December 14th: a day after fan voting has concluded. For the next two weeks, you can continue to have your say on NFL.com’s official ballot, and also vote on social media. Every retweet on Twitter and Pro Bowl vote hashtag counts as an individual vote in it’s overall summation, for example.
The Pro Bowl isn’t the most accurate reflector of team talent and it does have it’s faults as a meaningless All-Star Game used to unfairly prop up eventual end-of-career resumes. That’s inarguable, as this process can be often too much of a weighty and ultimately meaningless prospect. But it’s still so strange to see the Bears back on such a relevant platform such as this.
If the current pace continues based off of the fan vote purely, eight Bears will be voted into the Pro Bowl in Orlando played a week before Super Bowl LIII. If it’s eclipsed, I guess over half of the starting roster can visit, if they like? Ah such are the perils of bona fide contention: you can’t count the number of Pro Bowlers on one, or even two hands.
Robert is the Editor-in-chief of The Blitz Network (subscribe here!), the managing editor of Windy City Gridiron, and writes for a host of other fine publications. You can follow him on Twitter @RobertZeglinski.