2010 Pro Bowl. While the Chargers might be at .500 right now, they do have a few players more than worthy for trips to Miami, particularly on the offensive side of the ball.The ballots have opened and voting has commenced for the
Vincent Jackson's 561 receiving yards currently slots him at fifth place among AFC wide outs, just behind household names like Randy Moss, Chad Ochocinco, Hines Ware, and Andre Johnson. His 19.3 yard average catch, however, puts up at the top of the league among WRs (with at least twenty catches). Jackson also averages more yards per game than any of the NFL top 10 receiving yards leaders, at a gawdy 93.5 per game. The AFC is home to some of the best QB-reciever tadems in the NFL, so Jackson will have to continue to open eyes around the league. But if he continues on his current pace, he not only with earn All-Pro and Pro Bowl accolades, but he'd also potentially place himself in the Chargers record books for most receiving yards in a season. (Alworth 1602, Alworth 1383, 1340 Jefferson)
Much like Vincent Jackson, Antonio Gates is enjoying early success and will likely build upon it, health permitting. But just as Jackson faces stiff competition among AFC receivers, Gates has conference rivals of his own. Prolific AFC offenses are allowing Tight Ends to put up huge numbers, with Houston's Owen Daniels (497 yds, 5 TD) and Indianapolis's Dallas Clark (485 yds, 3 TD) both edging Gates out in receiving yards and touchdowns. But Gates (474 yds, 2 TD) is neck-and-neck with those two, and his recognizably and consistency should make him both a popular as well as deserving choice for Pro Bowl votes.
But the San Diego Charger who is perhaps the most deserving of a Pro Bowl bid also faces the stiffest competition; Philip Rivers' 1787 passing yards is only good for fifth place in a conference which boosts some of the best AFC quarterbacks in the entire league. The AFC is loaded with great Quarterbacks, three of which have Super Bowl victories. Names like Brady, Manning, and Roethlisberger are always in the Pro Bowl converstation, but up-and-comers like Matt Schaub and Joe Flacco are making their marks as well. Philip Rivers, right in that top 5 mix, is a guy who garners mixed reaction among NFL fans. He's a love him or hate him type guy. While some love his leadership, intensity, and bravado, others find him brash and big-mouthed. However there is no doubt that he has been the Chargers' MVP both last season and this, and his proven track record of leading his team to fourth quarter victories proves that Rivers is among the elite in the league.
Why he doesn't get more media attention is a bit confusing, but it may have something to do with his laid-back, family-man demeanor off the field. After all, while we've all seen Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, and Ben Roethlisberger in national ad spots, when is the last time you saw a Philip Rivers commercial?
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