The NFL Pro Bowl has become pretty much the most irrelevant exhibition game in the sports world. In no way does this mean that players don’t take it personally when they are snubbed.
This appears to be the case with stud second-year Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey who was left off the NFC team in favor of Todd Gurley, Ezekiel Elliott and Saquon Barkley.
Tapping into the idea that he’s been slighted his entire life, McCaffrey had this to say about being snubbed.
McCaffrey on being left off Pro Bowl roster: “It is what it is, man. That’s been my whole life. Nothing new.”
— Max Henson (@maxhenson) December 19, 2018
One can easily understand where the running back is coming from. Even after starring for Valor Christian High School in Colorado, McCaffrey was just the 26th-best running back recruit in the Class of 2014. What he did at Stanford before being a top-10 pick of the Carolina Panthers in 2017 is by now well known.
On the field this season, McCaffrey has been one of the most-dynamic offensive players in the entire NFL. He’s put up 1,747 total yards and 13 touchdowns in 14 games. That includes an average of 5.0 yards per rush and a ridiculous 94 receptions.
In fact, McCaffrey joined some elite company with his performance against the Saints on Monday night.
The issue at hand here is that Elliott, Barkley and Gurley are also having tremendous seasons.
Elliott leads the NFL in rush attempts (286), rushing yards (1,349), touches (358) and total yards (1,892). Barkley is in the midst of a historic rookie season, having put up 1,809 total yards and 13 touchdowns. Meanwhile, Gurley leads all NFL running backs with 21 touchdowns.
The good news here is that McCaffrey was chosen as an alternate and will more than likely suit up in the Pro Bowl. That doesn’t take away the sting of not being selected outright.