On Sunday, it was announced that Minnesota Vikings fullback C.J. Ham was being sent to this weekend’s Pro Bowl as a replacement for San Francisco 49ers fullback Kyle Juszczyk. Now, four more members of the purple will be making their way to Orlando as well. . .including one that will make even the most ardent Vikings fan scratch their heads.
The four new Vikings that have been added to the roster are quarterback Kirk Cousins, defensive end Everson Griffen, linebacker Eric Kendricks, and cornerback Xavier Rhodes.
Cousins is the replacement for Aaron Rodgers, who suffered a bruised ego this past Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers. Given the numbers he put up this year, he probably should have been on the team in the first place, but he wasn’t. This will be Cousins’ second trip to the Pro Bowl, as he went in 2016 as a member of the Washington Redskins.
Griffen replaced 49ers defensive end Nick Bosa, who will be playing in the Super Bowl. Griffen had a nice bounce back season this year after the issues he dealt with in 2018, collecting eight sacks and intercepting a pass. This will be Griffen’s fourth trip to the Pro Bowl in five years, as he went in 2015, 2016, and 2017 as well.
Kendricks replaces Seattle Seahawks’ linebacker Bobby Wagner, who will be sitting this out because of an injury. Another player that probably should have been on the team to start with, he had what might have been his best season as a pro in 2019, and was even getting some whispers for Defensive Player of the Year consideration for a while. This will be Kendricks’ first trip to the Pro Bowl.
Then there’s Xavier Rhodes, who was named to replace Richard Sherman. I’m as big a Vikings fan as you’ll find, and have been a big fan of Xavier Rhodes over the years. Having said that. . .I don’t understand this selection at all. Rhodes clearly wasn’t himself this season, whether that was because of nagging injuries or because he’s just slowing down, and had a lot of rough outings this season. Still, he’s now on the squad, making him a three-time Pro Bowler.
With those four additions, the Vikings now have eight players on the NFC Pro Bowl squad:
- RB Dalvin Cook
- QB Kirk Cousins
- DE Everson Griffen
- FB C.J. Ham
- DE Danielle Hunter
- LB Eric Kendricks
- CB Xavier Rhodes
- S Harrison Smith
Congratulations to all of the members of the purple that we’ll be seeing in Orlando this coming weekend.