NFL Pro Bowl 2013: Power Ranking MVP Candidates for Star-Studded Game

Richard LangfordCorrespondent IDecember 28, 2012

PHILADELPHIA, PA - DECEMBER 23: Robert Griffin III #10 of the Washington Redskins throws a pass against the Philadelphia Eagles during a game at Lincoln Financial Field on December 23, 2012 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

Predicting the MVP of the Pro Bowl is not an easy task. The usual candidates like Peyton Manning, Tom Brady or Aaron Rodgers may not even go, and if they do, they aren't likely to get extended playing time. 

Just to give you an idea of the kinds of surprises you can have as MVP for this glorified, but fun, exhibition game, DeAngelo Hall and Matt Schaub are two of the last three winners. 

Also, Hall aside, it is rare that a defensive player wins. Derrick Brooks joins Hall as the only other defensive player to win this award since 1998. 

So, keeping the unique situation of the Pro Bowl in mind, here are the top-5 contenders to win MVP. 

*Check out the full rosters here

No. 5: Charles Tillman, CB, Bears

I know I just got done saying a defensive player rarely wins this award, but after the year Tillman has had, he has to be considered. 

The guy has been a turnover machine. He has three picks and an amazing 10 forced fumbles this year. He has a knack for being in the right place at the right time, and he obviously knows what to do when he gets there. 

Creating a few turnovers in the Pro Bowl could put Tillman at the front of this race. 


No. 4: Adrian Peterson, RB, Vikings

I'm not sure what to expect out of Peterson in this game. I mean, if I was him, I'd skip it. He's been busting his tail all year to come back from his knee injury, and he runs as hard as anyone in the league during the season. His body has to need a break, right?

However, it seems hard to keep AP away from the field, and once he's on it, big plays happen. He won this award in 2007, and he could win it again. It's not like any of the defensive players in this game are going to be overly excited to tackle him. 

I would have him higher on this list, but I wonder how many touches he will get. 


No. 3: Calvin Johnson, WR, Lions

If I'm a quarterback in this game, I would be begging the coach to let me get all my snaps when Johnson is on the field. What a treat this guy is for quarterbacks to throw to. 

You can always expect plenty of deep balls in the Pro Bowl, and there is no better place to look for that than Johnson. 

Sure, he will be facing an elite secondary, but Megatron is the elite of the elite. 


No. 2: Jamaal Charles, RB, Chiefs

Charles has been in Adrian Peterson's shadow this year. He got off to a bit of a slow start, but he has been great towards the end, and he has shown he is well beyond any issues from last year's ACL tear. 

Charles has also been kept from a greater national spotlight due to the fact he is on the terrible Chiefs. He should be ready and eager to step onto the big stage and show everyone he is a force. 

Charles only needs a few holes to hit for a big gainer, and there is usually no lack of those in the Pro Bowl. 


No. 1: Robert Griffin III, QB, Redskins

With the way quarterbacks skip the Pro Bowl, Griffin could wind up starting, but either way, he will shine. 

He is going to get plenty of time in the pocket in this game, which will allow him to showcase his amazing accuracy. He'll also have time to pick holes so he can take off and run. 

The Pro Bowl often winds up looking like a high-scoring flag football game, and is there another player on the planet that could be more exciting in that kind of setting?