That said, the league still wants the players in the Pro Bowl to try to be part of their teams. That means there is an expectation that they will show up for practices and meetings, and then they can go relax and do whatever they want.
For Minnesota Vikings left tackle Bryant McKinnie, showing up for the short practices is apparently too much to ask. As a result, he is no longer a Pro Bowler.
Mark Craig of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports that McKinnie's penchant for skipping practices has left him off the NFC Pro Bowl team.
This week, McKinnie made time for one practice. Out of four.
He also skipped the team picture. It left New York Giants lineman David Diehl upset.
"I can't speak for him," Giants tackle David Diehl told me. "All I can speak for is me. I was here for everything. I was prepared and I'm ready to go. I'll be ready to go tomorrow night."Diehl has every right to be upset. He may have to play the whole game because of McKinnie's behavior. The NFC only had three tackles for the game, and McKinnie was slated to play both right and left tackle so Diehl wouldn't have to go for 60 minutes.
With McKinnie off the squad, it's up to the NFL to figure out how to handle things. It's doubtful that Diehl and Eagles tackle Jason Peters are going to be thrilled about playing the whole game.
If you're wondering why he hasn't shown up, it could be related to his incessant late-night partying. His Twitter page has all the evidence.
What would we do without the comedy of players getting themselves in trouble by posting on Twitter when they're out too late partying and blowing off meetings and practices the next day?