The Dolphins are not yet atop the AFC standings, but they were No. 1 in the conference when it came to Pro Bowl selections with six players chosen to the postseason all-star game.

The total of six players tied San Francisco for second-best in the entire league, behind the seven nods that went to the Philadelphia Eagles.

With the second-ranked defense in the league, it shouldn't be a major surprise that five of the Dolphins' six selections came on that side of the ball.

The list includes defensive end Jason Taylor, defensive tackle Tim Bowens, linebacker Zach Thomas, cornerback Patrick Surtain and free safety Brock Marion.

The one selection on offense was running back Ricky Williams.

This is the fourth consecutive selection for Thomas, who became the first defensive player on the team to be picked four years in a row since John Offerdahl was chosen five straight years (1986-90).

Taylor, Bowens and Marion all were selected for the second time. Taylor and Marion previously had been chosen in 2000, while Bowens had been selected in 1998.

As for Surtain and Williams, this marked their first selection to the Pro Bowl.

In addition to the six players, tight end Randy McMichael, kicker Olindo Mare and cornerback Sam Madison were chosen as second alternates, while special-teamer Tommy Hendricks and Jamie Nails also were selected as alternates.

Alternates wind up playing in the game if elected players have to sit out because of injuries or other reasons.

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