Four NFC North players were named Friday to the Associated Press' All-Pro Team, and three were elected by nearly unanimous votes. That's the upshot of an honor that, to me, is far more prestigious than the Pro Bowl rosters that always seem to get more attention.
The All-Pro Team combines players from the NFC and AFC onto one all-star team, requiring more difficult choices from the 50 media members who vote. So it's quite newsworthy to me that Detroit Lions receiver Calvin Johnson and Minnesota Vikings defensive end Jared Allen each received 49 votes at their respective positions. It's the fourth All-Pro Team for Allen and the first for Johnson.
And in what could be a preview of MVP voting to be announced next month, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers easily topped New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees in All-Pro voting. Rodgers received 47 1/2 votes to Brees' 2 1/2 to be named first-team quarterback.
Note: Not that this would compare in any way to the All-Pro Team, but for those who are asking: Rest assured that we will compile a 2011 All-NFC North team after the Super Bowl. As always, I'll seek your input on tough choices. Hang tight.