KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Whatever your preferred criteria for selecting the three AFC quarterbacks for this season’s Pro Bowl, it’s impossible to justify how the Kansas City Chiefs’ Alex Smith was left out.
(Smith may eventually make the Pro Bowl as an alternate, but for now the conference's quarterbacks are the Patriots' Tom Brady, the Steelers' Ben Roethlisberger and the Chargers' Philip Rivers.) Here are all of the 2018 Pro Bowl selections.
Smith’s numbers stand up to the best in the AFC in almost every significant category:
Smith plays for the 8-6 Chiefs, while Brady's and Roethlisberger's teams are 11-3. But the Chiefs are a game ahead of Rivers’ 7-7 Chargers, and Smith owns two victories this season against his L.A. counterpart.
Smith has the NFL’s No. 1 passer rating at 105.4. If QBR is more your thing, Smith (60.8) is fourth in the AFC behind the injured Deshaun Watson of Houston, Brady and Roethlisberger but well ahead of Rivers (53.3).
Smith has a career high in touchdown passes. Granted, that’s a low bar, but his 25 TDs rank third in the AFC behind only Brady and Roethlisberger. Smith has the NFL’s best TD-to-interception ratio at 5-to-1.
Smith is third the conference in yards per attempt at 8.02, behind Watson and Brady.
Brady is clearly the best quarterback in the AFC this season. An argument could be made that Roethlisberger is right behind, though that’s far from a sure thing.
Either way, Smith is in the top three. That’s beyond debate.