Pro Bowl Thoughts

The Dolphins are one of only four teams in the AFC with a losing record, so it figured they wouldn't have too many representatives in the Pro Bowl. But were there any injustices out there involving the Dolphins? We take a look.

We'll start on offense because that's going to be a brief discussion. Really, the way the Dolphins offense has struggled, was there really anybody out there deserving of a spot.

Interestingly, veteran defensive tackle Vonnie Holliday said Monday right tackle Vernon Carey had played well enough to earn a Pro Bowl invitation.

While we'll agree Carey has a pretty solid season, we don't think he has established himself enough to get a Pro Bowl invite at a position where reputation means an awful lot.

Jonathan Ogden, Tarik Glenn and Willie Anderson got the nods at tackle in the AFC this year, but Carey might be ready to start getting involved in the discussion with another good year in 2007.

Outside of Carey, there was no one whatsoever on offense who deserved consideration, not even fan favorite Wes Welker, who has had a decent year at wide receiver but nothing compared to what Marvin Harrison, Reggie Wayne, Chad Johnson and Andre Johnson have done.

While we're on the subject of Welker, he's done a very good job returning kicks, but didn't run one all the way back for a touchdown, which left him no chance to beat out the Jets' Justin Miller.

Now we get to the defense, which is where the Dolphins had a few worthy candidates.

By process of elimination, we'll dismiss everybody from the secondary because it has been the weak link on defense all season. From this vantage point, Andre' Goodman and Yeremiah Bell have been the two best defensive backs all season, but they have not been Pro Bowl-caliber.

At linebacker, Holliday also mentioned Channing Crowder on Monday, but the truth is he just didn't make enough plays to warrant serious consideration. He may yet get there before too long because he's got great potential, but calling Crowder's effort this year Pro Bowl-caliber was a stretch.

Zach Thomas did get on the Pro Bowl team at linebacker, and it was well deserved. From this vantage point, Thomas didn't have a particularly impressive start to the season, but he has been playing lights out in recent weeks.

Now we move to the defensive line, where Jason Taylor might have been the easiest choice of any player in the league.

Taylor last week lobbied for two of his defensive line mates, Keith Traylor and Vonnie Holliday.

One problem there right off the bat was the fact both are interior defensive linemen, which meant they would be competing against each other as well as others around the league.

Traylor really was a strong candidate early in the season when he not only was a force against the run but also was getting sacks. But he really slowed down in the second half of the season, perhaps as the result of the wear and tear on his 37-year-old body. In the end, he didn't quite measure up to Pro Bowl standards even though he still had a solid season.

As for Holliday, he looked from here to be just as deserving as anybody who was named to the team, but faced some ridiculously tough competition at the position in the form of Pro Bowl selections Jamal Williams, Casey Hampton and Richard Seymour.

Seymour easily is New England's best defensive players, while Williams and Hampton are the two best run stuffers in the AFC. It's not that Holliday didn't have a Pro Bowl season because he did. This is where the Dolphins' record might have played a big role in the decision-making process among fans, coaches and players.

So, to recap, Taylor and Thomas were very deserving of their Pro Bowl nods, Holliday had a Pro Bowl year even though he didn't get picked, and Traylor and Carey came up just a little short.

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