Marcus Cannon deserves to be a Pro-Bowler.
The words don't quite dance off the tongue. Esepcially when you rewind the clock to January's AFC Championship game performance which saw Broncos star Von Miller turn Cannon into a human carousel.
However, Sunday's performance in his rematch against Miller was the icing on the cake of a lengthy stretch of play in 2016 that has put Cannon in the conversation among the top right tackles in the NFL. According to pass rush stats kept by Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald, Cannon dominated in the Mile High City.
Cannon was perfect in 14 1-on-1 pass blocking assignments against Von Miller. Allowed a QB hit on Talib delayed blitz, pressure to Ray.— Jeff Howe (@jeffphowe) December 19, 2016
The former TCU Horned Frog, now in his 6th year with the Patriots, has raised his game to the level worthy of the 5-year $32,410,000 contract extension he signed on November 29th. The deal makes Cannon the 4th highest paid right tackle in football on a per year basis, keeping in line with his production according to PFF's Bryson Vesnaver.
What a difference a year (and Dante Scarnecchia) makes. Cannon was 86th graded tackle last year, 15th this year (4th among RTs) pic.twitter.com/uv7F1zZVJq— Bryson Vesnaver (@PFF_Bryson) December 20, 2016
The only other players at the position ranking higher than Cannon (and there are 4 by my count, making him the 5th highest graded RT in the game) are Jack Conklin, Lane Johnson, Bryan Bulaga, and Ryan Schraeder.
The 2017 Pro Bowl selections will be announced tonight at 8:00pm ET on the NFL Network.
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Photo: Isaiah J. Downing/USA TODAY Sports