The 2024 Pro Bowl Games voting is complete, and three Seattle Seahawks are in. Bobby Wagner, Julian Love, and Devon Witherspoon get the cool little asterisk next to this year in Pro Football Reference now.
What do we actually learn from the results this year? Some might say a lot, some might say nothing, the reality - as always - is probably somewhere in between.
Let’s grab the five actual lessons to glean from the nominations this year.
1) Name Recognition Means A Lot
This doesn’t even apply only to players - more on that in just a second.
But this concept is true of every All-Star game across all sports; it should, in some regard. It’s difficult to remain objective when asked “who is the best player” when one guy has been the best player for 10 years.
Like Quandre Diggs last year, Bobby Wagner may be the head scratcher this year. Completely deserving of the Hall of Fame, it’s hard to definitely agree he’s been the best linebacker in the NFC this season.
One thing that may have factored in: Pro Football Focus (PFF) continually gives Wagner one of the best run grades in the league. Name rec carries weight.
2) No Offense
DK Metcalf, Geno Smith, and Kenneth Walker III are all alternates this year.
This may feel a bit imbalanced, with how the Seattle offense is 11th in points per game, while the defense is ranked 30-32 in nearly everything since Week 9. Metcalf is surely the best player on offense this year, followed probably by Smith honestly. Walker is an absolute star if you only pay attention from two yards behind the line of scrimmage to about three yards.
Only Geno Smith (2022), Russell Wilson and Duane Brown have been offensive Pro Bowl Players since 2021. Metcalf got the award in 2020. This team has had some better offenses lately, but they’ve not lived in the land of star power on offense for a long, long time.
3) Lots of Alternates?
I don’t know what this means other than it feels quite accurate to Seattle’s current position: close, but not close enough.
For the record, the San Francisco 49ers have 13 alternates even though 9 players made the Pro Bowl. So there’s that.
Speaking of which,
4) Far Behind NFC West
This is the real takeaway.
At quarterback, the Niners and Rams have a player.
At running back, the Niners and Rams have a player.
At receiver (WR or TE), the Niners and Rams have a player. One of them’s a rookie.
At interior defensive line, the Niners and Rams have a player.
We’re furious that the Hawks found a way to lose to Los Angeles twice, but the reality is their strengths beat Seattle’s strengths. Mookie’s covered this in great depth this week, but Pete Carroll has most of his bullets marked for defense - say seven out of ten if we’re guessing - and it’s not working. The defense sucks, and the offense has drafted Charles Cross, Jaxon Smith-Njigba, and two running backs lately.
There remains a gap of some measure at the top of this division.
5) Devon Witherspoon made the Pro Bowl, Jalen Carter did not
How cool is that?