Bears Defense Dominates Chicago's List of Pro Bowlers

Andrew Garda@andrew_gardaFeatured ColumnistDecember 27, 2012

GLENDALE, AZ - DECEMBER 23:  Cornerback Charles Tillman #33 of the Chicago Bears runs with the football against wide receiver Andre Roberts #12 of the Arizona Cardinals en route to a scoring a 10 yard interception touchdown during the thrid quarter of the NFL game at the University of Phoenix Stadium on December 23, 2012 in Glendale, Arizona. The Bears defeated the Cardinals 28-13.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

There are few shocks in terms of the Bears who made the Pro Bowl roster, especially that the bulk of the list is on the defensive side of the ball.

Chicago's defense has been dominating, and so it makes sense that they dominated the starting roster for the NFC North's defensive squad.

There's actually a ton of NFC North players on both sides of the ball, a testament to the overall strength of the division.

Of course, the Bears lead the defensive squad.

Julius Peppers

If there is a shaky selection out of the Bears' group, it's Peppers. As much as he has had a great career, it wasn't a Pro Bowl season for him, though he was by no means terrible.

On the other hand, you have a player like Charles Johnson from Carolina who is likely forgotten because he plays for Carolina.

Still, you can't complain about Peppers, who also is a leader on the field and is a vital part of the Bears' success. Perhaps there are players more deserving, but Peppers isn't undeserving at all.

Henry Melton

Melton has been huge for the Bears' defensive front and excelled both in stopping up the run as well as attacking the quarterback. He's had career highs in overall tackles and assists as well.

However he's not anyone who gets much press beyond Chicago, despite his role in the defense, so it's gratifying to see Melton get his props league-wide. At the end of the day, Melton is a guy who is just in his third year, so for him, it could be the best is yet to come.

Charles Tillman and Tim Jennings

"Peanut" has had a huge year and shut down many of the best receivers in the league. Tillman doesn't just play against the pass though, he has been a huge factor in run defense as well. He's forced a ton of fumbles as well and has been a huge problem

Has he been perfect? Certainly not, nobody is.

That said, he's played so well that he has quarterbacks avoiding him as much as they can and throwing to the other side of the field.

There's just one problem with that.

Tim Jennings makes it very hard to throw away from Tillman because the ball will get picked off.

Right now Jennings and Tillman are the best cornerback tandem in the league. As much as you'd expect Richard Sherman and Cortland Finnegan to make the roster, I wouldn't move them in at the expense of these two.

Brandon Marshall

Marshall is virtually the entire Bears offense. Yes, Matt Forte is a very important factor, but Marshall has carried this offense most of the season. It has been almost impossible to fully contain him.

If Marshall isn't getting touchdowns, he's getting yards.

Most of the time he does both.

While the Bears might miss the playoffs, it won't be for lack of trying on Marshall's part.


I don't think there's much the voters missed. I think you could make an argument for someone like Lance Briggs, but I don't see any tragic oversights.

The Bears are well represented on this roster.

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Follow me on Twitter at @andrew_garda.


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