Seattle Seahawks Send Earl Thomas To Pro Bowl, Five Alternates

By Lars Hanson

The Seahawks haven’t sent a player to the Pro Bowl since 2008 but with the emergence of several young players on defense that has change. Today the NFL announced the starters and alternates for the 2012 Pro Bowl in Honolulu, Hawaii. Second year free safety Earl Thomas was named a starter for the first time in his career.

Thomas, a first round pick in 2010 out of Texas has improvement immensely this season and it’s come without a boat load of  interceptions. Thomas has become more of a leader and captain in the defensive backfield this season and he’s helped other players emerge as well.

Seattle is likely to give Thomas some company with strong safety Kam Chancellor, cornerback Brandon Browner and fullback Michael Robinson were named first alternates. Running back Marshawn Lynch was named as a second alternate and punter Jon Ryan was named a third alternate.

Lynch was a surprise snub given his strong showing over the second half of the season including breaking the  Seahawks record for consecutive games with a rushing touchdown. Since October Lynch has ran for 855 yards and nine touchdowns compared to his 263 yards and three touchdowns between September and October.

Lynch has gotten 3/4 of his total yards and touchdowns  in the second half of the season due to his increased role with the team. Matt Forte (Chicago), Frank Gore (San Francisco) and LeSean McCoy (Philadelphia) were selected as starters for the NFC.

Kam Chancellor has become one of the more well known hardest hitting safeties in the league while drawing some fines from the NFL. Chancellor received a $20,000 fine for a hit on Ravens wide receiver Anquan Boldin and $40,000 for a hit on Rams tight end Lance Kendricks.

His mentor and former Seahawks Lawyer Milloy taught the 6-3 232-pound second year star well and as a result he’s become the starting strong safety this season. Chancellor also has 88 tackles, four interceptions and three forced fumbles on the season.

Cornerback Brandon Browner, a rookie by technical terms, has come out of the Canadian Football League and flourished in his first season in the league. At 6-4 Browner is a dominating physical corner and at times it’s hurt him with penalties for holding and pass interference.

However he hasn’t let it, or the early negative comments, get to him and over the last five games he’s recorded five of his team leading six interceptions. Browner has gone relativity unnoticed by the league while racking up several league leading stats. He ranks 2nd in Int return yards (220), tied-4th in Int’s (6), tied-1st in passes defensed (19) and tied-1st in Int touchdowns (2).

Browner, along with rookie Richard Sherman combine to have the tallest cornerback combination in the NFL. Exactly what Pete Carroll wants.

Jon Ryan ranks tied-3rd in punts (87), 8th in yards per punt (46.8), tied-2nd in punts inside the 20 (30) and tied-2nd for touchbacks (8).

Here are some of the reactions to Pro Bowl announcements by the Seahawks coaches and players.

Earl Thomas reaction on Twitter: “Dream come true pro bowl baby….thanks to all my teammates…”

Kam Chancellor reactions on Twitter: “Great news!!!!!” and “Just found out that I’m the first SS pro bowl alternate for the Pro bowl… “Dancing”.

Jon Ryan reaction on Twitter: “No Pro Bowl for me this year. Thank you #12thman for all your votes. Maybe next year. Congrats to all the Pro Bowlers.”

Pete Carroll reactions on Twitter: “Congrats to Earl Thomas — 2011 Pro Bowler!! And also to 1st alternates Brandon Browner, Kam Chancellor & Michael Robinson!” and “And more #ProBowl congrats to 2nd alternate Marshawn Lynch & 3rd alternate Jon Ryan! A special season for all 6 Seahawks honored!”

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