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FRED TAYLOR PRO BOWL !!!

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First off, this makes my head hurt...


Peyton Manning handing off to Fred Taylor!!!???!!

No, I didn't forget, it's just that the Pro Bowl as an event and an experience is completely off my radar.  I appreciate the honor that Fred's got, but as for actually following the game, I just can't get into it.

But, if you're curious, here's a few links about Fred's experience in Hawai'i.

The Honolulu Advertiser discusses how Fred Taylor and Linebacker Mike Vrabel are the two players this week who have had the longest wait to get to the Pro Bowl.

In this New University Online essay Tyler Davis discusses his development as a fan of Fred Taylor through a "rookie card".  It's worth a read:

Amazingly, watching Taylor play was as euphoric as I could have imagined. Picasso couldn't have appreciated art the way I appreciated watching Taylor run with the football. He was always the sharpest, fastest, quickest and most agile player on the field. I couldn't even sleep on Saturday nights--my heart couldn't stop racing as I kept envisioning his 70-yard touchdown runs. The night before every Jaguars game felt like Christmas Eve.

That was when I was 14. Today I'm 22--and nothing has changed.

Having such extraordinary devotion to a football player is generally considered more eccentric than admirable. Even I thought my extreme fan-fervor would taper off as I matured and grew invested in things that "mattered," things I had control over, but my ardor only grew.

This season marks Taylor's 10th year in the NFL. At 31 years old, he is considered by most to be in the twilight of his career, but I don't buy into that for a second.

However, the start of the 2007 season was one of the more straining times in my career as a fan. Taylor was averaging just 50 yards a game and he was losing playing time to Maurice Jones-Drew, the Jaguars' future runningback. The light was quickly dimming on Fred's career.

After 10 games of failing to record a single 100-yard rushing performance, I nearly began to accept what appeared to be the inevitable ending to my hero's career.

But his 11th game put that thinking on hold...

So there you go, enjoy your Pro Bowl weekend.  I might, just for fun, do a Pro Bowl WORLD FAMOUS live blog, especially since the next live blog will probably be the NFL Draft, all the way in April...

-Chris