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Big Mac's Strange Pro Bowl Absence

So that story about Bryant McKinnie not just turning down his Pro Bowl invite -- but actually getting kicked off the roster? It's provoked a reaction around the league, which ain't an easy thing to do when we're talking about the Pro Bowl. Pro Football Talk notes that Big Mac had been tweeting about clubbing when he should have been practicing with his NFC counterparts. Not that there's anything wrong with enjoying oneself after a tough week, but the puzzling part is why McKinnie didn't provide earlier notice that he was physically unable to play.

Here's the explanation Big Mac provided via Twitter:

I never said I didn't go out! But I do have some on going injuries that I spoke 2 the trainer about last nite on the phone.

And the ppl who have been following me should already know my body was feeling bad late in the season cause I've said it a numerous amount of times. Getting a massage, getting in the cold tub and all the other things I have 2 try 2 do. I was trying 2 push myself 2 play n this game and I thought my body would start feeling better the later we got in the week. So yesterday I called my agent and said I don't think I will be able 2 play. He called and got in touch with the trainer, the trainer called me last nite and I told him what was bothering me.

We ended up missing each other and that was that.

And here's some reaction from a league source:

"Why didn't he just not refuse to come?" a league source told us tonight.  "That way, they could have gotten someone to replace him.  Now, they have to play the game with one less tackle."

I can see both sides of this now that McKinnie's had an opportunity to share his side. To some extent, this could just be an honest mistake on Big Mac's part, desiring to play but misjudging his ability to get physically prepared for the game. But the NFC is caught in a bad situation and will need to play shorthanded. McKinnie would have been better off not even trying to prepare for the game, and hitting the club scene right before the weekend doesn't make him look good at all -- but at minimum, he did what seemed impossible in my book. He improbably generated some controversy for the Pro Bowl, a game that isn't exactly conducive to controversy.