ATLANTA - NOVEMBER 20: Quarterback Michael Vick #7 of the Atlanta Falcons congratulates lineman Derrick Brooks #55 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, Georgia. The Buccaneers defeated the Falcons 30-27. (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)
Derrick Brooks leads the way with the most Pro Bowls of any NFC South franchise player.
After 2011 NFL Pro Bowl rosters were revealed yesterday (including seven Falcons!), I started wondering about the NFC South's historical standing in the league's all-star game. So here's an all-time division roster based on Pro Bowl selections. It came out pretty close to what you'd draw up if you were creating an all-time NFC South squad from scratch.
The NFC South has only existed since 2002, but I included pre-2002 Pro Bowlers for each team. This sells the Carolina Panthers short, as they're the youngest franchise by far, but they still put five starters on the list. I think I included every divisional player who's been to multiple Pro Bowls, but may have missed a couple. Let me know if you spot any.
The divison's oldest team, the Atlanta Falcons, has 13 starters. Between that and yesterday's Pro Bowl haul, Atlanta Falcons fans should definitely be satisfied in the national perception of their team for the time being. The history shows the Birds have earned far more recognition than their local rivals despite similarly scant winning seasons.
The New Orleans Saints have five starters and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have seven (those numbers don't add up to one starter per position, as who am I to choose between Joe Horn and Steve Smith? It also means a few positions send multiple starters to the same team). However the Saints and Bucs have the most-decorated players in Derrick Brooks, Willie Roaf, Mike Alstott, and Morten Andersen, and the Saints took over the marquee position this year with Drew Brees' fourth selection.
Andersen and Warrick Dunn were the only players I could find who made Pro Bowls with multiple NFC South teams. Do you know of any more?
- Drew Brees, Saints (4)
- Michael Vick, Falcons (3)
- Steve Bartkowski, Falcons (2); Chris Chandler, Falcons (2) Jake Delhomme, Panthers (2); Archie Manning, Saints (2)
- William Andrews, Falcons (4)
- Gerald Riggs, Falcons (3)
- Stephen Davis, Panthers (2); Warrick Dunn, Bucs (2); Rueben Mayes, Saints (2); Deuce McAllister, Saints (2); George Rogers, Saints (2); Michael Turner, Falcons (2)
- Mike Alstott, Bucs (6)
- Joe Horn, Saints (4); Andre Rison, Falcons (4); Steve Smith, Panthers (4)
- Alfred Jenkins, Falcons (2); Muhsin Muhammad, Panthers (2); Roddy White, Falcons (2)
- Wesley Walls, Panthers (5)
- Alge Crumpler, Falcons (4); Jimmie Giles, Bucs (4)
- Junior Miller, Falcons (2); Jim Mitchell, Falcons (2)
- Willie Roaf, Saints (7)
- Mike Kenn, Falcons (5); George Kunz, Falcons (5)
- Jammal Brown, Saints (2); Jordan Gross, Panthers (2)
- Bill Fralic, Falcons (4)
- R.C. Thielemann, Falcons (3)
- Jahri Evans, Saints (2)
- Jeff Van Note, Falcons (5)
- Tony Mayberry, Bucs (3)
- Claude Humphrey, Falcons (6); Lee Roy Selmon, Bucs (6)
- Julius Peppers, Panthers (5)
- Kevin Greene, Panthers (2); Joe Johnson, Saints (2); Simeon Rice, Bucs (2)
- Hardy Nickerson, Bucs (5); Tommy Nobis, Falcons (5); Jessie Tuggle, Falcons (5)
- Keith Brooking, Falcons (4); Vaughan Johnson, Saints (4); Sam Mills, Saints (4)
- Derrick Brooks, Bucs (11)
- Rickey Jackson, Saints (6)
- Pat Swilling, Saints (4)
- Hugh Green, Bucs (2)
- Elbert Shelley, Falcons (4)
- John Lynch, Bucs (5)
- Morten Andersen, Saints (6)
- John James, Falcons (3); Todd Sauerbrun, Panthers (3)
- Michael Bates, Panthers (5)