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Pro Bowl
NFL

5 Biggest 2023 Pro Bowl Roster Snubs

  • Justin Melo
  • December 22, 2022
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The NFL announced its 2023 Pro Bowl rosters on Wednesday evening. Unsurprisingly, several annual mainstays earned recognition. That list includes the likes of Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen, and Aaron Donald.

The new format is designed as a week-long celebration that will spotlight flag football. The flag football game will be played at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas on February 5.

As per usual, there were also several deserving players who failed to earn appropriate recognition. These players are often referred to as snubs. Draft Network has identified five 2023 Pro Bowl snubs.

CHRISTIAN MCCAFFREY RB, SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS

McCaffrey has been outstanding since joining the 49ers at the trade deadline. McCaffrey has accounted for 880 total yards of offense in eight regular-season appearances with San Francisco. The 49ers have rounded off seven consecutive victories as a result.

McCaffrey has reestablished himself as the league’s premier dual-threat running back. He’s played a large role in San Francisco’s ongoing success. The 49ers have already clinched the division title in the NFC West and possess legitimate Super Bowl aspirations. 

McCaffrey’s early-season stint with the lifeless Carolina Panthers may have hurt his candidacy. McCaffrey deserves to represent the 49ers at the Pro Bowl. Fellow NFC running back Dalvin Cook was also snubbed.

NICK BOLTON LB, KANSAS CITY CHIEFS

Bolton is a top-two linebacker in the AFC and we can’t be convinced otherwise. The No. 58 overall selection in the 2021 NFL Draft, Bolton is enjoying an excellent sophomore campaign for Steve Spagnuolo’s defense. A tackling machine, Bolton has racked up 137 total tackles, which ranks fifth across the league.

Bolton is more than a stat-sheet stuffer. He is living around the football. He’s totaled 9.0 tackles for loss, seven quarterback hits, 2.0 sacks, two interceptions, two pass breakups, and one forced fumble. Bolton has flashed improved skills in pass coverage this season too. He’s also been credited with making 42 total stops, per Pro Football Focus. 

It’s rare to see a Chief get snubbed from the Pro Bowl, but Bolton fits the criteria. Buffalo Bills linebacker Matt Milano was also snubbed.

JAVON HARGRAVE DT, PHILADELPHIA EAGLES

The 13-1 Eagles lead all franchises with an astounding eight Pro Bowl selections. Several Eagles were snubbed and had to settle for alternate status, however. A league-leading nine Eagles were named as Pro Bowl alternates. Hargrave is a snub that deserved a direct path to Vegas in February.
Hargrave has been one of the most dominant interior defensive linemen in 2022. He is arguably Philadelphia’s most talented front-seven defender, and that’s saying something given what he’s surrounded by. Hargrave has recorded a career-high 10.0 sacks this season. He is consistently getting after quarterbacks with an additional 48 pressures, 33 hurries, and five quarterback hits under his belt.

STEPHON GILMORE CB, INDIANAPOLIS COLTS

Gilmore is an especially surprising snub because legacy votes are a thing at the Pro Bowl. A five-time Pro Bowler, Gilmore is playing well enough to have earned a sixth honor. The 32-year-old is still one of the league’s most impressive cornerbacks.

Playing for the 4-9-1 Indianapolis Colts likely hindered Gilmore’s candidacy, but the former South Carolina standout has been blameless for Indianapolis’ failure to compete. Gilmore has been his usual workhorse self, playing a total of 532 coverage snaps to date thus far. Gilmore has recorded two interceptions and 11 pass breakups. He’s still earning weekly assignments against opposing No. 1 receivers.

Fellow veteran cornerback Patrick Peterson was also snubbed from the NFC’s roster.

MICHAEL ONWENU OG, NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

Onwenu hasn’t allowed a single sack this season despite already playing 866 snaps, per Pro Football Focus. Onwenu has been a rock in pass protection, allowing just one quarterback hit. A disciplined and technical blocker, Onwenu has been whistled for just two penalties all season long. 

Minnesota Vikings left tackle Christian Darrisaw and Eagles right guard Isaac Seumalo were snubbed from the NFC team. Seumalo has allowed just one sack while featuring on the league’s most dominant offensive line and rushing attack. Darrisaw has been equally as impressive as a pass protector and run blocker while manning the blindside for the playoff-bound Vikings.

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Justin Melo