The NFL announced their own rosters for the all-star game that many people think should be gotten rid of, but you will never get rid of fantasy football. Unlike the Pro Bowl, it makes money.
That makes sense to me. All-Pro isn't based off of any fan voting. Fans are not good at voting. This is proven by Nomar Garciaparra, and the fact that Calvin Johnson did not even lead NFC receivers in fan voting this year. The Pro Bowl rosters are not even based off of 16 games, which is also not unlike other sports. Of course, other sports "All-Star" games are dumb too.
Hey, why are you giving us this power to give players bonuses and recognition? We are not equipped for this.
Well, if we are equipped for this as a nation, then I am equipped to do the same for a Fantasy Pro Bowl roster. Trust me on that one, I happen to play fantasy football and write about it too, so, ya know, that's basically all you need. You could do it, too. Just get a website!
With that, here are your real Pro Bowl rosters and Fantasy Pro Bowl rosters. I wonder how often the names will match up?!?!
* - starter
Real Pro Bowl Quarterbacks -
Fantasy Pro Bowl Quarterback - Aaron Rodgers
It was very difficult to pare down the list of nominees to just one but after careful consideration I am going with a pick that simply can not be wrong. How can you argue against Aaron Rodgers? You some kind of weird sicko?
When taking into account consistency, healthy, big games, and playoffs, no other quarterback had quite the resume of Rodgers. If I was a parent, I would not tell a classroom of kids anything negative about Mr. Rodgers. It's a good thing I don't have kids yet because I would be a terrible parent. Just the other day I drank coffee out of Tupperware.
Drew Brees has considerably more yards and a few more touchdown passes, but also has ten more interceptions. Rodgers started off the season slow, but you weren't going to bench Rodgers, so you still benefited from his run in the middle of the season when he threw 24 touchdowns in a seven-game span. Compare that to benching Cam Newton, which you might have done before he blew up for big games in the latter-half of the year.
If you survived the playoffs after Rodgers' 1 TD performance against the Lions in Week 14, you were probably the fantasy victor with back-to-back 3 TD, 0 INT games over the last two weeks. Congrats! If you did not win the fantasy championship, don't worry. These things are like high school; You wasted a bunch of time and no one will remember that you went a whole day without zipping up your fly, or that you started Brian Hartline like seven times.
(Just kidding, nobody ever forgets the dumb things you do in fantasy leagues.)
Tom Brady would have been a fine choice, just barely losing a tie-breaker that I decided upon: having a lackluster Week 16 fantasy championship game with 2 TD and 2 INT against the Jaguars. Come on, Tommy, it's the Jaguars!
Robert Griffin III was a solid player all season, but fell just short of this title by missing Week 15 and accumulating only four touchdowns over his last three starts. Oh well, you still have a good shot at Rookie of the Year, even though that award is not nearly as special as the one I just gave to Aaron Rodgers as Fantasy Pro Bowl starter.
Fantasy Value Pro Bowl QB - Russell Wilson
Call me a biased homer (I don't care, what power do you have over me?) but Wilson came into the season with more doubt among fantasy drafts than he had in the actual draft. Wilson, if he was drafted at all, was listed around names like Alex Smith and Mark Sanchez. Those guys do not even start in the NFL anymore!
He did not necessarily do anything to quell his critics to start the season, posting only 5 TD and 6 INT in his first five games, but since then he could be one of the best waiver wire adds for fantasy football all year long. Wilson has posted at least two touchdowns in seven of his last eight games, including eight touchdowns over the last two weeks. If you started Russell Wilson during the fantasy playoffs, then you are on the front of Russeller Magazine as "Fantasy Russeller of the Year."
Real Pro Bowl Running Backs -
Fantasy Pro Bowl RB1 - Adrian Peterson
There is no real way to get around the fact that Peterson is the best in the NFL at his position, whether it fantasy or reality. Everywhere other running backs are asking themselves, "Should I tear my ACL???" and the answer is: "Maybe???"
Peterson is 102 yards shy of 2,000 yards and has a slim but real chance of catching Eric Dickerson for the best single-season mark in history. But as far as the "fantasy season" goes, 1,898 yards is about as good as it gets. Peterson's 11 total touchdowns trails Arian Foster, Marshawn Lynch, and Trent Richardson, but none of those players can make up for AD's massive lead in yardage.
He had a lackluster Week 16, but not nearly as bad as Foster's 15 rushing yards and 1 fumble lost.
Fantasy Pro Bowl RB2 - Arian Foster
I'm not going to lie - I could easily go with Lynch here and not even feel bad about it. Lynch has six touchdowns over his last three games and 100+ yards in each, while Foster has 1 TD in his last three games and has rushed for fewer than 50 yards in three of his last four. Beast Mode provided consistency all year long and was hot at the right time, but touchdowns don't come like they used to in the Marshall Faulk-Priest Holmes-Shaun Alexander-LaDanian Tomlinson days, and Foster finished with four more touchdowns than Lynch.
That's the only thing that gives him a slight edge for me.
C.J. Spiller had a ridiculous 6.5 yards per carry, but only seven touchdowns and no huge fantasy games since Week 2. Doug Martin had one of the craziest fantasy games of all-time, but has scored only once in his last four games.
Fantasy Value Pro Bowl RB - Alfred Morris
Every. Single. Season. A rookie comes into the league with a "Ohhhh they are starting?!?! DRAFT! DRAFT! DRAFT!" tag and every-single-damn-season it seems like that was a stupid idea. Who knows what the hell to ever make of Mike Shanahan, let alone a running back competition with a 6th round rookie, Roy Helu, Tim Hightower, and any other RB that Shanahan finds behind the stadium asking for "change please?" Did Olandis Gary not answer his phone?
Well, Morris is an example of when these things go right.
Morris started the season off with 96 yards and two touchdowns against the Saints. What should be a Mike Shanahan death knell (a good game!) turned out to be a sign from heaven. Morris remained the consistent starter for Washington and has totaled 1,406 yards and 10 touchdowns as a rookie. It helps having Robert Griffin III as an additional rushing threat, but even when Kirk Cousins started he had two touchdowns against Cleveland.
Morris has over 20 carries in six straight games and looks to have a firm hold on the job. Which means that in a Shanahan system, he will be traded or released in March.
Doug Martin, Chris Johnson, and Knowshon Moreno are among pleasant surprises, but who the heck is Alfred Morris? I still don't know.
Real Pro Bowl Wide Receivers -
Fantasy Pro Bowl WR1 - Calvin Johnson
As if you didn't know.
The reason I do not like contemporary Superman movies is that he is simply too good. When Clark Kent let's go of his human mask and becomes his true self, there is nothing he can't do. "Oh the plain is about to crash? No worries y'all, Superman's got it." There is no suspense when your hero is literally invincible except for kryptonite but, I mean, who has time to find kryptonite? I can't even find the picture settings on my TV.
Well, luckily in the NFL, it is very fun to watch Superman. Or in this case, Megatron.
Calvin Johnson should have no trouble getting the 108 yards needed against the Bears to become the first 2,000-yard receiver in history. If there is any downside to his game this year for fantasy owners, it's that beyond reason he has 117 catches but only five of them are for touchdowns. Johnson has posted at least 118 yards in eight straight games and he has five games of at least 200 yards over his last 19. That's just... not human.
Fantasy Pro Bowl WR2 - Brandon Marshall
Like QB, this one was pretty damn hard.
Why not Roddy White? Only seven touchdowns, though he had 153 yards and two touchdowns in Week 16, he has 16 yards and no touchdowns in Week 15.
Why not Julio Jones? Way too many duds. Jones had six games with single-digit fantasy points.
Why not Andre Johnson? A large part of his fantasy points came from Week 11 against the Jaguars when he had 14 catches for 273 yards and a touchdown. He's like Brian Hartline, except way better, but not quite good to be the WR2 on this roster.
Why not A.J. Green? I was really close with Green based on his consistency in the middle of the season but he only has 1 TD in his last five games.
Why not Demaryius Thomas? It was really close, but he got me nothing for Christmas. I mean, I only got him a $5 gift card to Starbucks, but that's better than nothing! And his overall numbers were just behind Marshall in every category.
Basically, it came down to Marshall or Dez Bryant. Dez made a case with 10 TD in his last seven games, including three two-touchdown games. But there's still an issue with Dez posting three terrible games, and a handful of "meh" games. Marshall finished (the fantasy season) with 25 more catches than Dez and was more consistent throughout.
Fantasy Value Pro Bowl WR - Randall Cobb
You could just as easily go with teammate James Jones and his 13 TD catches, including four in the last two games, but Cobb just had a bigger all-around impact for a team that struggled to keep their star receivers on the field and productive.
Cobb only has one TD in his last five games, but he has two 100-yard games in that span plus a number of kick and punt return yards, which count in many leagues these days. Overall, Cobb has 80 catches for 954 yards, 8 TD, 964 kick return yards, and 292 punt return yards with a touchdown, for a guy that was nothing more than a deep sleeper in many leagues.
This Cobb turns Inception into Reception. #boom,son #bestjokes.com
Real Pro Bowl TEs -
NFC - *Tony Gonzalez, Jason Witten
Fantasy Pro Bowl TE - Tony Gonzalez
Remember how we were all saying that the NFL is becoming a "Tight End League"? Haha, fooled you, sucker! Hope abound around young tight ends, but that has not panned out in the slightest, so give it up for the oldest of them all: Tony Gonzalez!
Aaron Hernandez missed too many games. Rob Gronkowksi missed too many games at a crucial time. Jason Witten turned in touchdowns on less than 2% of his 103 catches. Jermichael Finley is actually not that good. Coby Fleener is not yet the second-coming of Gronkowski, let alone the second coming of teammate Dennis Allen.
It only comes down to Gonzalez and Jimmy Graham. Gonzalez had more catches and yardage, so there ya go. That's your answer. It's also cooler since Graham was probably the top TE coming into the season for fantasy, while Gonzalez was supposed to be "Too old for this sh*t" and retire Danny Glover-style. He might need to come back for Lethal Weapon 4, even though we knew that was not going to turn out good.
Fantasy Value Pro Bowl TE - Jermaine Gresham
I don't know man, but what a disappointing year for tight ends in fantasy. Gresham has played up to his first round billing, catching 64 passes for 737 yards and five touchdowns. Which is way more productive than Vernon Davis this year. Next year, please draft a tight end right before you draft a kicker.
Who knows what to expect from the top of a very shallow position.