Chicago Sun-Times

Chicago machine doesn't turn out for Bears in Pro Bowl balloting

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If the fan ballot is a good indication, the Bears will not be well represented at the Pro Bowl.

Returner Devin Hester was the only player to win fan balloting at his position.

The fan vote counts one-third in the selection process with the players and coaches each counting one-third. Teams voted earlier this week and the Pro Bowl rosters will be announced Tuesday. The game will be played at Aloha Stadium in Hawaii on Feb. 8.

Middle linebacker Brian Urlacher was second at inside linebacker with 276,508, trailing Washington's London Fletcher. Urlacher won the fan ballot last season but was not selected for the game, failing to finish in the top five after coaches and players weighed in.

Punter Brad Maynard, whose had perhaps his finest season in eight years with the Bears, was third behind New York's Jeff Feagles and Washington's Ryan Plackemeier. Outside linebacker Lance Briggs was fourth in voting, behind Dallas' DeMarcus Ware and the Redskins' pair of Jason Taylor and Marcus Washington. Center Olin Kreutz was fourth and tight end Greg Olsen was fifth.

Defensive tackle Tommie Harris, who has been named to three Pro Bowls, was not in the top five. He has a de-escalating roster bonus in his contract that requires him to go to the Pro Bowl and participate in 74 percent of the snaps. The bonus starts at $8 million and reduces by $1.5 million for each season he fails to meet the terms. Harris has no shot at the play-time requirement and unless he does substantially better at the polls with peers and coaches, he'll be shut out on the expenses-paid trip as well.

The Bears sent four players to the Pro Bowl last season--Briggs, Harris, Hester and special teamer Brendon Ayanbadejo. Ayanbadejo, now with Baltimore, led fan balloting at special teams in the AFC.

Eight Bears were chosen for the Pro Bowl after the 2006 season and six after the 2005 season.

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2 Comments

Why would we vote heavily for this Bears team?? There is NOONE with maybe the exception of Briggs that deserves to go!!!!! HESTER WON??? are you kidding me???? the only bowl he should be going at the end of the season is the toilet bowl.. to hopefully flush the memories from this season straight to He ll .... And start fresh next year...

I think we would have voted Anthony Adams in if he played more than half a season. It was sad to see Dvoracek go down again, but if not for Dusty's injury, Adams wouldn't have been given the opportunity to shine. A blessing in disguise.

And yeah, probably D. Manning on KR if he had more opportunities.

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This page contains a single entry by Brad Biggs published on December 11, 2008 5:37 PM.

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