Saturday, January 10

NFL All-Pro Team Announced

Fifteen newcomers, one unanimous selection and two AFC divisions with as many appointees as the entire NFC headline the NFL's All-Pro team. A year after New England went through the season undefeated their only representative is kicker Stephen Gostokowski. In fact, the AFC East's only two All-Pros were both specialists, with the Jets Leon Washington chosen as kick returner. Tony Gonzalez, coming off a season of being the only tight end with over 1000 yards receiving, as well as double digit TDs, makes his fifth team. Safety Ed Reed fresh off feasting on the carcasses of Chad Pennington deep balls was the unanimous selection. The best story has to be Cortland Finnegan being selected to his first team after being a 7th round pick in 2006. More after the break.

In the AFC, both wilcard teams had a(t least one) player make the squad, but of the division winners both Miami and San Diego had no one. Of the NFC playoff teams, all the division winners had multiple picks with the exception of Arizona, who only had Larry Fitzgerald. Atlanta's Michael Turner was the only seclection from the NFC wildcard teams. Fitzgerald was the NFC West's lone pick, as Carolina's Jon Beason edged the 49ers Patrick Willis for the second inside linebacker position. Mainstay Ray Lewis is the other. The only non-playoff team to have multiple selections was the Oakland Raiders with cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha and punter Shane Leckler.

For Panther fans, one of the most disappointing snubs was running back DeAngelo Williams. Finishing third behind Adrian Peterson and Michael Turner is no reason to hang his head, but the voting disparity is surprising. AP received 45 votes and Michael Turner, 40. DWill garnered a mere 13 votes. Williams finished with 235 fewer yards than league leader, Peterson, but averaged 5.5 yards per carry trailing only Derrick Ward (5.6) amongst running backs with at least 150 carries. Peterson had a very respectable 4.8 y/c average, but only ten touchdowns and nine fumbles (four lost), where DeAngelo led the league with twenty touchdowns and zero fumbles. Both had an all-pro selection blocking for them, Jordan Gross at tackle for the Panthers and Steve Hutchinson for the Vikings. Of the other linemen only Carolina's left guard Travelle Wharton received any votes (2). It's hard to argue with the league's leading rusher being selected to the team, but to anyone that has watched WIlliams play in the second half od the season, it's even harder to argue that there are two better running backs.

For the complete list (including New England's Asante Samuel) click HERE.

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