Steelers' Timmons 'can't explain' Pro Bowl snub
Steelers linebacker Lawrence Timmons put together a Pro Bowl-type season, playing all but two defensive snaps. Yet with the Steelers out of the playoffs, the Florida State product was overlooked when ballots were cast for the AFC all-star team.
Timmons was more upset that no one on the NFL's top-ranked defense was deemed good enough to make the trip to Hawaii. He and safety Ryan Clark were named as alternates.
“It's an honor to be an alternate, but I felt as if I played well enough to be in there,” Timmons said. “But the coaches and players have spoken, and I accept that.
“It's tough, but it's something I can't explain. We've always had (a defensive player) in the Pro Bowl for as long as I've been here.
“I'm not a rah-rah kind of guy, but I rather lead by example because it's always been a (frame) of mind. Everybody wants to know they are a good player, but getting notoriety isn't something I live by.”
Timmons, who will make his 94th career start against Cleveland on Sunday at Heinz Field, has dreamed of playing in the Pro Bowl since the Steelers drafted him 15th overall in 2007.
He had the numbers this season: a team-leading 126 tackles and three interceptions. He could become the first player to lead the team in tackles and interceptions since Joey Porter (89 tackles, four interceptions) in 2002.
The numbers, though, don't reflect what Timmons means to a defense that played significant minutes without key starters, including safety Troy Polamalu, linebackers James Harrison and LaMarr Woodley and cornerback Ike Taylor.
“He doesn't take his talents or job for granted, and it shows in the offseason,” Taylor said. “He's taken strides in learning defenses, and it's why he's able to make plays the way he's making them.”
Timmons made a number of big plays this season. He intercepted a pass in overtime that helped the Steelers secure a 16-13 win over Kansas City, and he returned an interception for a score in a loss at Cleveland.
A year ago, Timmons' numbers declined as he was asked to fill in at outside linebacker for the injured Woodley and Harrison. He had 91 tackles after amassing a team-best 149 in 2010.
“We all get caught up in the numbers too much,” Taylor said. “When you've got a linebacker who can play inside and outside, it says a lot about that guy and how unselfish he is. He could have demanded the coaches keep him inside to bolster his Pro Bowl chances, but that's not his demeanor.”
But some numbers do matter. For Timmons, they are the residuals of a grueling offseason workout plan.
“I don't want to ever leave a play out there,” Timmons said. “I didn't start the season the way I wanted, but I finished strong.”
Clark agreed a faster start probably would have landed Timmons in the Pro Bowl.
“I think when it comes to the Pro Bowl, people look at the splash plays,” Clark said. “I think Lawrence definitely had that during the second half of the season. Lawrence will be there before it's over.”
Ralph N. Paulk is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- For Steelers outside linebacker Jones, size is not an obstacle
- Pirates top Cardinals, 5-2, on Davis’ homer; Alvarez, McCutchen hurt
- Steelers cornerbacks Allen, Gay, Taylor have something to prove
- Steelers notebook: Team cuts 15 players, including LB So’oto, RB Hall
- Latrobe law firm’s secretary pleads guilty to income tax evasion
- PSU notebook: Freshman cornerback Haley soars up depth chart
- Pittsburgh paramedics treat 38 people at Stage AE concert
- Harmar police make 2 drug arrests as part of crackdown on crime
- Indiana County township ‘afraid for the water’ fights waste well
- 2 top technology officers leave UPMC
- Western Pennsylvania drivers at bottom of insurer’s safety rankings