If you would’ve told Packers’ fans before the season that their team would be sitting at the top of the NFC with a chance to win the No. 1 seed outright in Week 16, they gladly would’ve taken it.
In the same sense, if you would’ve told them that the Packers would have seven players selected to the Pro Bowl, they would’ve taken it.
So is writing a column about a player not being selected being a little nit-picky? Maybe.
However, it’s baffling to most fans who have watched the game of football how Packers’ tight-end Robert Tonyan wasn’t selected, and how Giants’ tight-end Evan Engram was.
Now, before I get into the numbers, I want to make it clear that this isn’t a slight against Engram. He’s been a solid player for New York this season. It’s just disappointing for fans to overlook someone who has played so well all season long.
Let’s compare the stats straight up.
Engram has had a solid year, posting 54 catches for 572 yards and a touchdown. Tonyan posted a similar year in yards and catches, but blew Engram away with 10 touchdowns on 49 catches and 551 yards. Let’s dig a little deeper.
QB rating when targeting Engram: 60.4. QB rating when targeting Tonyan: 148.8. Engram has had 6 drops this season. Tonyan hasn’t recorded a single drop through 14 games.
With his touchdown catch on Saturday against the Panthers, Tonyan extended his franchise-record of consecutive games with a touchdown catch for a tight-end to 5. He currently leads all tight-ends with 10 touchdown catches – more TDs this season than Stefon Diggs and T.Y. Hilton combined.
The only two other tight-ends in Green Bay history have scored 10 touchdowns or more in a season: Keith Jackson in 1996 and Paul Coffman in 1983.
Shall I go on?
Tonyan has been the tight-end Packers’ fans have been waiting for since Jermichael Finley. He’s been a solid on-the-line blocker, and has been consistent in the passing game.
Now, anyone who knows football knows that Pro Bowl voting is a flawed system. Just ask David Bakhtiari, who has made more All-Pro teams than Pro Bowls.
When you look at the body of work that Tonyan has produced this season, it’s tough for me to sit here and not pipe up with my opinions and stats.
Here’s to hoping none of Green Bay’s guys get to play in that thing anyway.——————
Gunnar Davis is a lifelong Packers fan and a recent graduate of Simpson College, where he was a 3-year letterwinner on the offensive line and graduated with a degree in multimedia communications. You can follow him on Twitter at @Gunnar57Davis.