Senior NFL Columnist

All-Prisco Team: Manning (duh!), Sherman and surprises along way

If you simply glanced at my All-­Pro team below, you'd think the Cleveland Browns were playing in the Super Bowl. They, of course, didn't come close.

That's what makes my All­-Pro team different than most. I reward players for playing well, not for being on good teams. That's why there are four Browns on my All­Pro team, three of them on offense.

If you ever want a lesson on the value of the quarterback position, take a look at the Cleveland offense. I have three All-­Pros from that unit: Left tackle Joe Thomas, center Alex Mack and receiver Josh Gordon. Yet they finished ranked 18th in total offense.

That should also say a lot about this team. It doesn't matter who you play for, what your team's record was, or any of that stuff. This team is about performance.

A couple of other notes:

I picked right and left tackles and right and left guards. The real All-­Pro teams do no designate. That's why all left tackles make the team. That's not fair. The positions are different.

I have 12 defensive players because there some teams play a 3­4, others a 4­3. It's hard to separate the two. So for this team, I picked four linebackers to go with four defensive linemen. Hey, it's my team.

The easiest pick by far was Peyton Manning at quarterback. Of course, you knew that.

Offense

QB­­ Peyton Manning, Broncos: He set a new standard for passing this season, setting marks for yards and passing touchdowns. Hard to believe he is 37.

RB­­ LeSean McCoy, Eagles: He led the league in rushing to earn his spot on the team. He is also a big factor in the passing game.

FB­­ Mike Tolbert, Panthers: He is sledgehammer as a lead blocker, but he can also run it when need be and can catch the football.

WR­­­ Josh Gordon, Browns: This second­-year player averaged 18.9 per catch with bad quarterbacks. Can you imagine if he had good ones?

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WR­­ Calvin Johnson, Lions: He averaged 17.6 per catch and had 14 touchdowns. How do you stop him?

TE­­ Jimmy Graham, Saints: Forget his showing against Seattle. He was the NFL's best tight end and had to fight through injuries.

LT­­ Joe Thomas, Browns: He had one of his best seasons in 2013 while a lot of other left tackles had down seasons or were injured.

LG­­ Evan Mathis, Eagles: He didn't get voted to the Pro Bowl ­­ he was named as a replacement ­­ but he deserves to be the left guard on all All­-Pro teams. He was really good this season.

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C­ Alex Mack, Browns: This free­-agent-­to­-be is about to become a very rich man. He is good in the run game and does a nice job in pass protection.

RG­­ Larry Warford, Lions: As a rookie, he was dominant on the right side of the Lions' line. He has a chance to be truly special.

RT­­ Phil Loadholt, Vikings: He is a big reason why Adrian Peterson runs so well for the Vikings despite no passing game. Edges out Denver's Orlando Franklin.

K­­ Matt Prater, Broncos: He was special kicking field goals and of course led the league in touchbacks on kickoffs.

Defense

E­­ J.J. Watt, Texans: He remained a dominant player despite his numbers being down.

T­­ Gerald McCoy, Bucs: This third­-year player was the best inside player in the league. He is quick and athletic and is tough to block.

T­­ Ndamukong Suh, Lions: Forget the sideshow, he's a heck of a football player. He and McCoy are a heck of a 2010 draft class for tackles.

E­­ Robert Quinn, Rams: He had 19 sacks and a ton of pressures. It's scary how good he could be in the coming years.

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OLB­­ Lavonte David, Bucs: It's a shame he isn't going to the Pro Bowl. He can cover and tackle. He is the only linebacker with at least five sacks and five interceptions.

ILB­­ Luke Kuechly, Panthers: This tackling machine was a big reason why the Panthers won the NFC West. He is also good against the pass.

ILB NaVorro Bowman, 49ers: He is the elite linebacker on the 49ers now, passing Patrick Willis. He is much better in coverage than Willis. It's a shame he suffered the torn ACL in the NFC Championship Game.

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OLB­­ Robert Mathis, Colts: He led the NFL in sacks with 19 1/2 and showed that he can get it done without Dwight Freeney.

CB Richard Sherman, Seahawks: Yes, he talks a big game. And, yes, he holds a lot. But he gets away with a lot of it and he's one of the best cover players in the league, leading the league with eight interceptions.

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CB­ Patrick Peterson, Cardinals: He is a big corner who excels playing man­to­man coverage. He will be a Pro Bowl player for a long time.

FS ­­Earl Thomas, Seahawks: He is the prototype free safety, a guy who can run and tackle. He has the range you need in a free safety and had five interceptions this season.

SS­ T.J. Ward, Browns: He is especially good in the run game and has improved in coverage. He is an unrestricted free agent this spring too.

P­­ Brandon Fields, Dolphins: He was second in net yards, tops in average and had 33 inside punts inside the 20.

Specialists

KR ­­ -- Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Vikings: The rookie averaged 32.4 per kickoff return and took two back for scores.

Coverage -- Jeremy Lane, Seahawks: He's played some nickel corner this season, but he excels on special teams.

 
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