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2012 NFL Pro Bowl: Why David Harris Is the AFC's Biggest Snub

ORCHARD PARK, NY - NOVEMBER 6: Head coach Rex Ryan of the New York Jets gives instructions to David Harris #52 during NFL game action against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium on November 6, 2011 in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images
Aidan MackieSenior Analyst IDecember 28, 2011

The release of this season's Pro Bowl rosters has caused a fair share of public backlash. Notable exclusions to the AFC roster are Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton, Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez and Texans outside linebacker Connor Barwin. 

It is Jets inside linebacker David Harris who is the biggest snub, though. Harris is having a season for the ages, as he has contributed in all phases of the game.

The Michigan product is the leader of a solid New York linebacker corps, and he has shown the unique ability to be a major factor in both the passing and running defense. 

The former second-round pick is undoubtedly the second-best player on Gang Green's talented defensive unit, behind only superstar corner Darrelle Revis. 

Harris is all over the field on any given week, and he seems to have a nose for the ball.

The 27-year-old has no shortage of big plays this year, as he is responsible for keeping the Jets in multiple games. In Week 4, Harris intercepted Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco for a touchdown that cut Baltimore's lead to 27-14. In Week 16, Harris picked off Eli Manning late in the fourth quarter in Giants territory. The interception led to a Jets touchdown that cut the Giants lead to just six. 

Harris leads AFC inside linebackers in nearly every single statistical department, including interceptions (4), sacks (5.5), pass deflections (12) and defensive touchdowns (1). The breakout star also ranks second on the Jets in tackles with 84, just one behind team leader Eric Smith.

The New York linebacker is a complete player, and he has few flaws in his game. He is an outstanding playmaker and superb tackler that is capable of turning a game around on any given play.

He outplayed Pro Bowl-selection Ray Lewis all year. Lewis was selected over Harris because of his big name, and big mouth. Harris is quieter than other big-time stars, and therefore, receives less media attention. 

The omission of David Harris from the AFC Pro Bowl roster is a travesty. He has been one of the game's premier linebackers for the last few years. The Jets linebacker will be determined to prove the selection committee wrong next week, and he is sure to have another huge game. 

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