If you needed any more proof that fan voting is incredibly unreliable when deciding actual talent, look no farther than the Pro Bowl voting. When you will notice is the Khalil Mack is nowhere to be found among the top ten in fan voting which is one of the deciding factors in which players are named to the Pro Bowl roster come January.
Mack is the highest rated rookie in the class and is the third highest linebacker in the NFL according to Pro Football Focus' grading system. Therefore it comes as no surprise Mack was named as a reserve on their Pro Bowl roster as a pass rusher.
They chose to call the position "pass rusher" and it includes defensive ends and 3-4 outside linebacker. The starters therefore are Von Miller, Justin Houston, JJ Watt, and Cameron Wake. A dynamic starting group for certain.
Just behind them as a reserve pass rusher is Khalil Mack along with Terrell Suggs, Michael Bennett, and Everson Griffen.
But the fans don't look at players by the same analytical metrics that PFF does. They look at players with their hearts and through a stat sheet. The voting has been going on for a while and being that sacks are so incredibly overrated in judging a pass rusher, Mack's three sacks in the past five weeks have him left out of the top ten outside linebackers in the voting.
There are no rookies among the list of outside linebackers, thought there are two of them among the top ten inside linebackers -- C.J. Mosley and Chris Borland -- neither of whom have performed at as high a level to be named Defensive Rookie of the Year as Mack has.
Here is the entire top ten list of outside linebackers:
1. Von Miller
2. Paul Kruger
3. Clay Matthews
4. Justin Houston
5. Elvis Dumervil
6. Julius Peppers
7. Connor Barwin
8. Lavonte David
9. DeAndre Levy
10. Brandon Marshall
DeAndre Levy and Brandon Marshall also made the PFF Pro Bowl at outside linebacker. Dumervil, David, and Peppers are all deserving while Kruger, Matthews and Barwin got their votes for their sack numbers -- all three land in the top seven in sacks from the 3-4 linebacker position.