Minnesota Vikings: Harrison Smith is an epic Pro Bowl snub

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - OCTOBER 15: Harrison Smith
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - OCTOBER 15: Harrison Smith /

The Minnesota Vikings have four players heading to the Pro Bowl. Yet, Harrison Smith isn’t one of them and that’s flat-out wrong.

The NFL announced the Pro Bowl selections Tuesday night and once again, the Minnesota Vikings star players were overlooked. Sure, four Vikings players were selected for the annual event, but in reality, this is a slap in the face to arguably the best team in the NFC. Basically, the likes of Linval Joseph, Case Keenum, and Eric Kendricks deserve to make the annual event along with Everson Griffen, Adam Thielen, Xavier Rhodes and Anthony Barr. Yet, out of the long list of deserving Vikings, none deserves it more than safety Harrison Smith.

According to Pro Football Focus, the sixth-year safety is the best at his position with an elite 94.6 rating. In other words, it’s an utter travesty that Smith didn’t make the Pro Bowl for a third straight season. In fact, I’d go as far as to say that Smith is the best defensive player on the Vikings, making him the most deserving player on the team.

Yes, Xavier Rhodes and Everson Griffen have fantastic arguments, but Smith is the most complete defender on the team. In particular, he can play all over the field and is as good against the run as he is in coverage. Not to mention, he’s the best blitzer from the defensive backfield.

Of course, there’s only so many spots on the Pro Bowl rosters, but that’s no excuse for leaving the best safety in the league off the NFC roster. While I can understand leaving him off the team if he was having an off year, that’s simply not been the case.

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Through 14 games, he has 64 tackles, three interceptions, 1.5 sacks, nine pass deflections, and five tackles for loss. Admittedly, Landon Collins, Earl Thomas, and Malcolm Jenkins are deserving players themselves, but none play the all-around game that Smith does from the safety position.

Given the Vikings are 11-3 and boast the second-best defense in the league, there’s no doubt Smith is a must addition to the NFC Pro Bowl team. The fact fans and the league don’t see it that way is quite mind-boggling. Additionally, Linval Joseph is a must addition for me, as he continues proving each and every game why he’s the best nose tackle in the NFL. At minimum, the Vikings should have had at least six Pro Bowlers this year.

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Hopefully, Smith and the rest of the Minnesota snubs gets the last laugh, as the Vikings are setting themselves up nicely for a run at the Super Bowl. In that case, no Minnesota players would be seen playing in the Pro Bowl, considering the game is held a week prior to the all-important game. In all likelihood, it’s safe to say that the likes of Smith, Joseph, and Keenum would take that over a Pro Bowl appearance any day.