Fan voting for the NFL pro-bowl officially opened Tuesday of this week. While fans love to vote for their favorite QBs, skill players, and even defensive guys, voting for the offensive line can be tough. olinestats.com is here to help by providing a guide to voting for pro-bowl offensive linemen.
When it comes to pro-bowl voting, remember that position side doesn't matter. You can vote for all LTs for the tackle position or all RGs for the guard position or any combination that makes the most sense. So with that in mind, we'll be making our pro-bowl picks are based on the most deserving players and not necessarily by trying to make sure all five OL positions are represented. Also, I would say it's best to wait till later in the season to vote rather than when voting first starts. But if you just can't wait and want to vote now, this guide will help you out.
Tackles (3 Players)
1. Rashawn Slater - Chargers (Starter)
2. Kolton Miller - Raiders (Starter)
3. Orlando Brown - Chiefs
All the best tackles this season play in the NFC. There probably won't be a single AFC tackle to make an all-pro team. However, the way the pro-bowl works, both conferences get the same amount of players voted in, so we have to pick three AFC tackles. Technically, on a per snap basis, Michael Onwenu from the Patriots has been the best tackle in the AFC. However, with Trent Brown back in the lineup he didn't start the Patriots last game, and if he does get back into the lineup, he'll probably be used at LG so I'm disqualifying him from this conversation unless something changes with how the Patriots use him moving forward.
So With Onwenu out of the picture, the top two choices from the AFC should be Slater and Miller. Slater has been the best LT in the AFC despite being a rookie and figures to be a stalwart of the Chargers o-line for years to come. Miller has played well the majority of the season and shined on a very bad Raiders o-line in which he is the only consistently good player of the starting five. The third choice was tough and I think it's something that will come down to the end of the year. Orlando Brown, Isaih Wynn, Dion Dawkins are the top candidates for that final spot. Dawkins has been the best in pass-pro of the three, but he's been by far the worst in the run game. Wynn has been the best run-blocker, and he's been a lot better in pass pro of late, but his overall body of work in pass pro has been negatively affected by a slow start. Brown has been the best of the three in terms of a complete body of work in both phases from start to finish. He hasn't been great this season, but he's been good, and he hasn't had significant dips in his play at any point in the season. For now, I give Brown the nod, but Wynn is on pace to overtake him, and if Braden Smith keeps playing the way he has, he could deserve the nod despite the games he's missed.
Guards (3 Players)
1. Joel Bitonio - Browns (Starter)
2. Joe Thuney - Chiefs (Starter)
3. Andrew Norwell - Jaguars
Bitonio should be a given for the pro-bowl. He's been the second-best guard in the NFL this season. The other two spots are going to be tough to choose and we'll have to monitor this all season. For now, I'm rolling with Joe Thuney and Shaq Mason. Thuney has only been ok in the run game, but he's been the best pass-blocking guard in the NFL on a team that throws it a ton, so he deserves to get in. Many might say Wyatt Teller should get a spot, and while he's certainly on the shortlist as one of the best run-blocking guards in the league, his pass-blocking this season has fallen off compared to last season, and for now, that keeps him off the list. Meanwhile, Norwell has been good in the run game in his own right, and he's top 10 among guards in PA%, so he's been a lot better in pass pro than Teller. Shaq Mason, Matt Feiler, Keven Zeitler, and Quinton Spain are also AFC guards to keep an eye on for the pro-bowl as the season goes on. The AFC guard pro-bowl race is probably the most interesting of all the o-line races in the NFL.
Centers (2 Players)
1. Corey Linsley - Chargers (Starter)
2. Creed Humphrey - Chiefs
It's almost a coin flip between Linsley and Humphrey for top AFC center, and both are almost locks at this point to be in the pro-bowl. The only intrigue here is which one is going to start. I give the nod to Linsley because both have been great in the run-game, but Linsley has been better in pass pro. J.C. Tretter, David Andrews, and Bradley Bozeman would be in the running for third-best AFC center, but none of them have performed well enough to challenge Linsley or Humphrey for a pro-bowl spot.
Tackles (3 Players)
1. Tyron Smith - Cowboys (Starter)
2. Trent Williams - 49ers (Starter)
3. Andrew Whitworth - Rams
A lot of NFC tackles are playing at a pro-bowl level, but there are only three spots, so many of them aren't going to make it. Smith and Williams have arguably been the best two offensive linemen in the league this season, so unless Smith is hampered by his ankle injury the rest of the way, I don't see how those two aren't the starting tackles for the NFC. Whitworth has been the best pass-blocking tackle in the league over the last month and should be a lock to get in as well. However, Ryan Rmzchek, Elgton Jenkins, Lane Johnson, and Brian O'Neil have all played at pro-bowl levels in their own right. And while none of them are likely to make the pro-bowl you could see them on the 2nd all-pro team.
Guards (3 Players)
1. Zach Martin - Cowboys (Starter)
2. Chris Lindstrom - Falcons (Starter)
3. Ali Marpet - Buccaneers
Zach Martin has been the best guard in the NFL, and by far the best one in the NFC, so there's nothing to talk about with him. It's a competitive race for the other two spots, but I have Lindstrom and Marpet leading the way at this point. Lindstrom has been the lone good run-blocker on a bad run-blocking Falcons line while also performing as one of the better pass-blocking guards in the league with a PA% of 2.96%. Marpet has been good in pass pro most of the season as well despite struggling some last week, and has been one of the better run-blocking guards. Laken Tomlinson of the 49ers is right there with those two and could easily be swapped out for either one. Also, keep an eye on Brandon Scherff who has missed time with injury, but on a per snap basis deserves to be in this conversation. This race will be interesting as the season continues to unfold.
Centers (2 Players)
1. Jason Kelce - Eagles (Starter)
2. Chase Roullier - Washington
The NFC center race is a little more competitive than the AFC one, but Kelce and Roullier are comfortably in the driver seat's at the moment. Kelce is a premiere run-blocker, and so is Roullier. They are ranked first and second among all NFL centers in run-block win rate. Roullier has the edge for the second spot currently, but Alex Mack of the 49ers is in the mix, and still has time to close the gap. Rodney Hudson lost some of his momentum after missing time with injury, but he has been one of the most consistent pass-blocking centers in the league, and while his run-blocking hasn't been up to that level, what he's added in terms of his veteran presence and leading the league in PA% gets him an honorable mention.