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Associated Press will re-examine the makeup of All-Pro teams

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The makeup of the annual Associated Press All-Pro teams has become increasingly archaic: With two running backs and a fullback making the first team, the 2015 All-Pro lineup looks more like something out of the 1940s.

But that may change. Barry Wilner of the Associated Press tells PFT via email that the AP will re-examine the makeup of its All-Pro team going forward.

That’s good news. The AP’s All-Pro team has been used for decades as the semi-official All-Pro team for the NFL, and it should reflect what the NFL actually looks like. It doesn’t. Today’s passing attacks mean that we see three-receiver sets on the field far more often than we see even one fullback. We also see two-tight end sets far more than we see two running backs on the field together, and yet the All-Pro ballot has room for two running backs and only one tight end.

What would make the most sense is for the All-Pro ballot to have space for one running back, two wide receivers, one tight end and one “flex” position where the voters could choose a fullback, a third receiver, a second tight end or a second running back. If the voters feel that a fullback had a good enough season that he’s deserving of All-Pro consideration, they’d still be free to vote for one. But a fullback on the All-Pro team shouldn’t be automatic anymore.

Changes should also be coming to defense, where the current format features two defensive ends, two defensive tackles, two inside linebackers, two outside linebackers, two cornerbacks and two safeties. These days, a nickel defense is a base defense, so it would make more sense to have an additional defensive back on the All-Pro team, even at the expense of a linebacker or defensive lineman.

There’s a brand of old-school football fan that loves fullbacks and inside linebackers and wouldn’t like to see them removed from the All-Pro team, but the game has changed. All-Pro teams should change, too.

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42 Responses to “Associated Press will re-examine the makeup of All-Pro teams”
  1. phillyjoefry says: Jan 8, 2016 5:52 PM

    Dumb. It’s not a “fantasy” roster! We don’t nee an All Pro “flex”. Just add a third WR or a second TE or get rid of one of the RB slots.

  2. avr29 says: Jan 8, 2016 5:54 PM

    Also need to allow them to vote players only at positions that the NFL lists them at, so Kahlil Mack, for example, could only be voted as a linebacker. Otherwise you could, theoretically, vote for Carson Palmer at QB and Cam Newton at RB.

  3. 8to80texansblog says: Jan 8, 2016 5:54 PM

    Why does the All Pro team have to exactly mirror the 11 on the field.

    The best full back in the league should be honored with an All Pro selection. Do you honestly believe a full back would ever garner more votes than a WR or RB?

  4. adamvidebeck3 says: Jan 8, 2016 5:56 PM

    Does anyone even care about the all-pro team anymore? When players retire usually the list pro-bowls. Pro-bowler in 13/15 seasons sounds better than all-pro 6/15 years.

  5. thegreatgabbert says: Jan 8, 2016 6:02 PM

    They’re also considering a change from the leather helmets and high top boots.

  6. axx69 says: Jan 8, 2016 6:02 PM

    The safety position needs some re-evaluation when it comes to all pro votes.

  7. dreadpirate88 says: Jan 8, 2016 6:02 PM

    adamvidebeck3 says:
    Jan 8, 2016 5:56 PM
    Does anyone even care about the all-pro team anymore? When players retire usually the list pro-bowls. Pro-bowler in 13/15 seasons sounds better than all-pro 6/15 years.
    —————————————————————

    Pro Bowl is not very meaningful because it includes fan voting, and because so many players skip the game. All-Pro carries more weight.

  8. corky2141 says: Jan 8, 2016 6:02 PM

    Offense should change to 2 TEs, 3 WRS
    Defense should add a 5 DB
    Keep the rest the same.

  9. therealraider says: Jan 8, 2016 6:11 PM

    When you start adding additional picks like say another WR or another CB.. it starts to water down the exclusitivity of the top 2 who earned it regardless of whether there was 2 spots or 3.. it would open debate on to who’s 1st, 2nd and 3rd, being named All-Pro is meant to distinguish the best of the best.

  10. athwartships says: Jan 8, 2016 6:11 PM

    Another pat on the back stat that has no meaning? hmmm meh.

  11. chesswhileyouplaycheckers says: Jan 8, 2016 6:13 PM

    adamvidebeck3 says:
    Jan 8, 2016 5:56 PM
    Does anyone even care about the all-pro team anymore? When players retire usually the list pro-bowls. Pro-bowler in 13/15 seasons sounds better than all-pro 6/15 years.
    _______________

    The guys that write, offer and sign contracts sure do. Many have some incremental pro bowl incentive but the ones that have All Pro incentives are usually huge in comparison

  12. TheWizard says: Jan 8, 2016 6:14 PM

    Does anyone even care about the all-pro team anymore?

    Hell, I never did, let alone “anymore”

    I think this only matters inside the profession, like writers arguing over who was first to break a story.

    They seem to think we all care, too.

  13. kcchefs58 says: Jan 8, 2016 6:19 PM

    Basically, the flex spot would eliminate the FB position. I find that lame, because there are still FBs in the league. Keep FB and add a flex for a WR or TE.

  14. adamvidebeck3 says: Jan 8, 2016 6:26 PM

    Lol first i agree more elite of a team because no injury replacements and less depth.. But was Cam Newton the best qb this year or the qb of the best team.. Pretty sure Tom Brady and Carson Palmer had better statistical seasons.

    Ill use Peyton Manning as an example..

    Are they going to say he was a 14 time pro-bowler or a 7 time first team all pro 3 time 2nd team all pro?

    I also think that the press abuse their power for voting in all sports and are just as if not less credible than fans.

  15. dirtycallahan says: Jan 8, 2016 6:33 PM

    See, I’m an idea man, Chuck. I got ideas coming at me all day… I couldn’t even fight ’em off if I wanted. Wait a second… hold the phone! Hold the phone! [speaking into tape recorder] Idea to eliminate garbage. Edible paper. You eat it, it’s gone! You eat it, it’s outta there! No more garbage!

    Look it up.

  16. jswheeler says: Jan 8, 2016 6:43 PM

    how about we look at how they vote for this?

    QB Stats
    level awarded/TDs/INT/Yards passing/rush yds
    first team/35/10/3837/636
    2nd team/35/11/4671/24
    nothing/36/7/4770/53

  17. mikebrownistheworstownerinprosports says: Jan 8, 2016 6:56 PM

    dreadpirate88 says:
    Jan 8, 2016 6:02 PM
    Pro Bowl is not very meaningful because it includes fan voting, and because so many players skip the game. All-Pro carries more weight.
    _______________

    Totally agree. That said, this year the fans voted Andy Dalton to the pro-bowl, yet his spot was given to Ben Roethlisberger instead. Check the numbers and watch the film. That’s at least one instance where the fans got it right.

  18. blackandbluedivision says: Jan 8, 2016 7:01 PM

    Soon as they make that change for the Pro Bowl. Plus they still need the distinction between edge rusher and OLB. Too many 4-3 OLB get robbed on a yearly basis…simply because they don’t have the sack totals a 3-4 OLB gets.

  19. j0esixpack says: Jan 8, 2016 7:07 PM

    I for one get VERY excited about a pointless game between all the NFL players who weren’t good enough or smart enough to get out of playing in said game in the first place

  20. suhmonster90 says: Jan 8, 2016 7:08 PM

    I for one am upset that Ziggy Ansah made second team because Mack stole his spot at DE. Or maybe Mack would’ve been listed as a DE. Oh well, sour grapes it is kinda cool that a player got two spots.

  21. sactogary says: Jan 8, 2016 7:10 PM

    Let the voters vote for three WRs, two TEs, and one FB. Compare the votes of the third place WR, the second place TE, and the top FB, and the winner gets the nod.

    The All-Pro team might change in position make-up each year, but that reflects the game.

  22. j0esixpack says: Jan 8, 2016 7:11 PM

    If they want fans to watch the game, I say scrap the Pro Bowl and instead have the WORST NFL team play the BEST college team

    It would be interesting – as I think a great college team could actually win – and it would ensure that the Colts would think twice before fixing NFL games to purposely “Suck for Luck” or the equivalent

  23. j0esixpack says: Jan 8, 2016 7:15 PM

    I think I like Jim Irsay’s idea the best

    We simply scrap this all together and just give all NFL players “Participant” trophies like he does for his team every year (except the year they got lucky enough to face Rex Grossman in the Super Bowl)

  24. fatsolio says: Jan 8, 2016 7:27 PM

    How about they examine how one guy can be named at two positions.

  25. mmack66 says: Jan 8, 2016 7:27 PM

    j0esixpack says:
    Jan 8, 2016 7:07 PM

    I for one get VERY excited about a pointless game between all the NFL players who weren’t good enough or smart enough to get out of playing in said game in the first place
    ——————————

    If going to Hawaii for a week is dumb, sign me up.

    Now, playing the Pro Bowl the week before the Super Bowl, is dumb.

  26. rajtuli says: Jan 8, 2016 7:34 PM

    So you want to turn the AP all pro team into a fantasy team!

  27. annes22 says: Jan 8, 2016 7:46 PM

    This All Pro team is a load of rubbish, it’s just like the Pro bowl.
    Players who should be there are not. Scrap all of it because it doesn’t relate to the playing during the season. If you have a “big name” you get on the Pro Bowl, if you are almost unheard of and on a crappy team you have no hope.

  28. tootitan says: Jan 8, 2016 9:05 PM

    “Associated Press will re-examine the makeup of All-Pro teams”

    Maybelline is the official makeup of the NFL. Why would they change now?

  29. 3yrsnfl says: Jan 8, 2016 9:52 PM

    If they want fans to watch the game, I say scrap the Pro Bowl and instead have the WORST NFL team play the BEST college team
    ———————————————————-

    You know that college team would get crushed right?

  30. number1hawkfan says: Jan 8, 2016 9:57 PM

    Not a popular opinion but it’s true that name recognition matters. I’m gonna catch some heat for this but Patrick Peterson is not an all pro. If he played for the lions for example and it didn’t say Peterson on his back you would have never heard of him. I watched every cardinals game and he’s decent but no all pro. He doesn’t tackle and gets thrown on a lot. Don’t believe me watch.

  31. 3yrsnfl says: Jan 8, 2016 9:59 PM

    j0esixpack says: Jan 8, 2016 7:11 PM

    If they want fans to watch the game, I say scrap the Pro Bowl and instead have the WORST NFL team play the BEST college team

    It would be interesting – as I think a great college team could actually win
    ———————————————————-

    On the BEST college team there are maybe 15-20 POTENTIAL NFL players. On the Worst NFL team there are 48 NFL players, 22 of which START in the NFL. The college team would get smashed.

  32. codiablo says: Jan 8, 2016 10:01 PM

    Maybe it’s time to add a couple extra guys – depending on the set (13 selections offense/13 selections defense). Every position should be represented (If there isn’t a fullback, then get rid of the position all together and see how that turns out for teams). There should be room to “flex” for different offensive and defensive schemes (why should a 3-4 guy make an all pro team that’s set as a 4-3? Why shouldn’t there be 4 LB’s?)…add some extra players, it won’t sully the glory – there are definitely more than 26 players who are all pros.

  33. mongo3401 says: Jan 8, 2016 10:21 PM

    Any All PronTeam that does not have Incognito as the starting left guard is a fares. It was bad enough Mike Pouncey made it. That was proof enough it’s a joke. Pouncey sucked last year as a guard and he sucked worse this year. There was no guard better then Incignito and he is an alternate? LOL Eer it’s a farce.

  34. gab5040 says: Jan 8, 2016 10:24 PM

    Voting should look like this on defense:

    2 IDL (interior defensive line… 4-3 DT, 3-4 NT, or 3-4 DE)
    2 Pass Rushers (4-3 DE or 3-4 OLB)
    3 LB (4-3 ILB, 4-3 OLB, or 3-4 ILB)
    3 CB
    1 FS
    1 SS

    Who cares if it’s 12 and not 11.

    You might be able to call “Pass Rusher” something else, because they should be graded on run-stopping too, but let’s be real… A 3-4 OLB and a 4-3 DE have more in common than a 4-3 OLB and a 3-4 OLB or a 4-3 DE and a 3-4 DE.

    On offense, just do this:
    1 QB
    1 RB
    1 FB
    1 TE
    3 WR
    2 T
    2 G
    1 C

    It’s more than 11 again, but who cares.

  35. dreadpirate88 says: Jan 8, 2016 10:28 PM

    Ill use Peyton Manning as an example..

    Are they going to say he was a 14 time pro-bowler or a 7 time first team all pro 3 time 2nd team all pro?
    ——————————————————–

    They will say both, like they usually do.

  36. bam5239 says: Jan 8, 2016 10:50 PM

    how about we look at how they vote for this?

    QB Stats
    level awarded/TDs/INT/Yards passing/rush yds
    first team/35/10/3837/636
    2nd team/35/11/4671/24
    nothing/36/7/4770/53
    _______________________________________________

    First team QB also had 10 rush TDs

  37. maverick2560 says: Jan 9, 2016 12:31 AM

    We need to add players. Linebacker and safety are an example.
    Especially linebacker where you have 3-4 inside that are same
    as some 4-3 outside linebackers. See the difference between Tamba Hali and Sean Lee. Adding players is not a bad idea. With today’s
    specialization players have unique roles. Those players who have
    a unique role who effect a game should be recognized.
    I think the NFL has enough money to do so. I knew an NFL
    player who made the pro bowl….he often said …” A player makes the pro bowl two years after he earned it ..and is still on 2 years after he
    should have not made it.”

  38. helicopterpilot13 says: Jan 9, 2016 4:32 AM

    They also chose FIVE linebackers.

  39. nachofacefakeindian says: Jan 9, 2016 7:05 AM

    Not enough Redskins…

  40. shlort says: Jan 9, 2016 7:16 AM

    Bottom line is, the all pro team is more a popularity contest than anything else. Being picked is based on how many times your name is mentioned in TV.

  41. Johnny Hirschauer says: Jan 9, 2016 8:27 PM

    So sick of the whole “progress for progress’ sake”. While some teams don’t use it others feature the fullback heavily. If there are still players there, and we’re voting in punters and kickers, keep fullbacks. Add other spots if you want, but don’t think you’re projecting a more “modern” view of the game by ignoring a position many teams still use. Anyone who think Jusczcyk, Reece, Tolbert, DiMarco, or Ryan Hewitt don’t have a significant role on their teams then you ought to watch those teams. So sick of this whole “enlightened” nonsense.

  42. gofor2with3pointlead says: Jan 10, 2016 2:29 PM

    Is it “village idiot” day on PFT? I can honestly say I disagree completely with most and don’t completely agree with anyone. Do I have a better idea? Here’s one, I don’t know, maybe think about it for a minute.

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