December 11, 2008
The Washington Redskins have a pedestrian 7-6 record, are last in their division and have been playing out messy feuds in public all week, but that didn't stop fans from determining that a whopping 12 Redskins should be starters for the NFC in the Prow Bowl.
Twelve, as in, eight more than the New York Giants, the defending Super Bowl champs that swept the Redskins this season. Twelve, as in, 11 more than the 10-3 Steelers, a team whose fans took over FedEx Field in a Monday Night romp last month.
This, of course, is the end result of the team's
Illinois-style ballot stuffing "Vote the Redskins Ticket" campaign that encouraged 'Skins fans to vote early and often for the team's players in Pro Bowl balloting. It apparently worked, as Shaun Suisham earned the most votes at kicker, despite leading the league in missed attempts. And Khary Campbell was the victor in the specialist category, even though he wouldn't be immediately recognizable to anybody outside of the Campbell family. Defensive tackle Cornelius Griffin was also the leading vote-getter at his position and the only time you hear his name on television it's followed by "unable to get there in time."
Fan voting only constitutes one-third of the selection process (the other two-thirds are made up by coach and player voting), so don't expect to see all 12 'Skins in Hawaii. (Not that you'd technically see them in Hawaii, because that would mean you'd actually be watching the Pro Bowl.) The only player who deserves to be on the team is Clinton Portis, although even that could change if his next three weeks are like his last three weeks.
Expect to hear some bellyaching about how this travesty of democracy should lead to fans getting their "votes" stripped. Poppycock. What, they don't have Internet in Pittsburgh? There aren't enough Cowboys fans out there to vote for Marion Barber? It's somehow the fault of Redskins fans that America couldn't collectively realize that a vote for Plaxico Burress was a vote for hilarity? Come on now.
The official Pro Bowl rosters will be released Tuesday at 4:00 p.m. on the NFL Network.
Update: After initial confusion on the voting results, it seems that 12 Redskins have been chosen by fans to be NFC starters in the Pro Bowl. All numbers in this post have been updated to reflect that, and Yahoo! Sports' Charles Robinson has more.
Photo: Getty Images
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