This is a travesty. It's a sham. It's a mockery. It's a traveshamockery.
There is no way in all that is good that Eli "Manning Face" Manning should have been named to the Pro Bowl over Tony Clutch Genes. The NFL announced the full rosters for the annual slobber fest and free trip to Honolulu and it seems that none of his peers is fond of hanging out with Dallas quarterback Tony Romo. The Cowboys will, for now, send only two representatives to the islands, and they both come from the defensive side of the ball.
That's right, the Achilles heel of this team is sending two representatives, and one of the best offenses in the league is sending zero. Zip. Zilch. Nada.
Of course, All-World OLB DeMarcus Ware deserves to go. He's trying to become the first player in NFL history to record two 20-sack seasons and needs only two in this Sunday's regular season finale. NT Jay Ratliff is a welcome send as well, even though Cowboys fans have started to underappreciate his game after a down 2010. His 2011 has been remarkable, he just doesn't have the sack stats. Pro Football Focus ranks him as the fourth-best DT/NT in the game this year as he returned to being a disruptive force in the middle of the defense.
On offense, I'm sure rookie running back DeMarco Murray would have gone if the Giants hadn't twisted his ankle bones (purposefully?) a few weeks back. He was on a scintillating pace. Rookie right tackle Tyron Smith is one of the top tackles in the league, but the trench positions are hard to break into "the club". Understandable. Another rookie, kicker Dan Bailey, set the league on fire making 27 in a row at one point, and won 5 seperate games in the last minute for this team. However, the Arizona freeze and the fact that San Francisco's David Akers broke the franchise's mark for points in a season makes plenty of sense.
But no Tony Romo?
Pardon my Jamaican, but kissmirass.
Tony Romo is 5-2 in Dallas' last eight games with one incomplete. Manning's team is 3-5. Romo has thrown 22 touchdowns to only four interceptions in that span.
There are only two quarterbacks in the NFC having a better season than Tony Romo, and they are battling for league MVP. Aaron Rodgers of Green Bay and Drew Brees of New Orleans have been other-worldly. But right on the next tier behind them and Patriots gunman Tom Brady is Antonio Romo. And he sits there alone.
Want stats? Romo has a 102.4 QB rating. Manning sits at 90.3 Romo has thrown for 29 touchdowns to Manning's 26. Romo has only tossed nine interceptions to Manning's 13. Yeah, well what about their completion percentages? Romo is at 65.4%, a full five points higher than Eli.
On throws 20 yards downfield or more, Romo's accuracy percentage (a PFF stat that accounts for throw aways, spikes, dropped balls, etc) is 55.9%. Manning's is 46.7%
Not a fan of PFF? OK, what about Football Outsiders? While Eli has thrown for 700 more raw yards than Tony Romo, that is more of a function of the Giants not having any semblance of a running game this season. FO's DYAR stat measures how well a player performs better than the average replacement player. Basically, if you take a player out and put an average backup in the exact same game situations, this is how much yardage he's worth.
Romo's DYAR is 1560 to Manning's 1187. This despite playing in 1 1/2 less games than Eli. His DVOA percentage (Defense-Adjusted Value Over Average) is 36.7% compared to Manning's 19.9%. This stat puts in percentage terms how much better a player is than the average replacement.
When it's all said and done, there really isn't any reason that Manning was selected over Romo, except for the stale narrative that Eli is clutch and Romo isn't. It's hogwash, to put it lightly. Tony Romo has put his team in position to win games just as much as Eli has, and Eli has cost his team just as much as Romo albeit not in the same noteworthy fashion. And Eli didn't get featured in ESPN's roller coaster skit.
Maybe this is a good thing, though. Romo will have the chance to put the narrative to bed this coming Sunday when the two teams face off in an elimination game at the New Meadowlands. He'll get the opportunity to show the entire world, on national TV that he is a better player than Eli. Sunday, 830 pm Eastern Time, Tony Romo, his bear claw and hopefully a big shoulder chip are going to North Jersey.