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Thursday, December 1, 2011
Pro Bowl update: TEs 1st & 3rd

By Mike Reiss


Kyle Terada/US PresswirePatriots coach Bill Belichick on the sideline at the Pro Bowl.



FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is the AFC's leading vote-getter in early returns of Pro Bowl fan balloting released Thursday.

Brady is second in the NFL behind only Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers (589,801). Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker is second in the NFL at his position, behind Detroit wide receiver Calvin Johnson.

A look at the Patriots that are currently ranked in the top 5 among AFC balloting:
Quarterback: Tom Brady (1st, 873,424 votes)
Wide receiver: Wes Welker (1st, 684,591)
Tight end: Rob Gronkowski (1st, 558,294), Aaron Hernandez (3rd, 159,733)
Offensive tackle: Matt Light (2nd, 191,640)
Guard: Logan Mankins (1st, 130,982), Brian Waters (3rd, 125,627)
Center: Dan Connolly (5th, 117,174)
Defensive end: Andre Carter (2nd, 227,458)
Defensive tackle: Vince Wilfork (3rd, 179,960)
Cornerback: Kyle Arrington (2nd, 266,198)
Strong Safety: Patrick Chung (4th, 38,889)
Kicker: Stephen Gostkowski (3rd, 44,496)
Punter: Zoltan Mesko (4th, 36,449)
Special teamer: Matthew Slater (4th, 44,096)

Fan voting (hop HERE to cast your ballot) runs through Monday, Dec. 19. The AFC and NFC All-Star squads are based on the consensus votes of fans, players and coaches. Each group’s vote counts one-third toward determining the 43-man rosters for each conference. NFL players and coaches will cast their votes on Dec. 21-22. The 2012 Pro Bowl will be played on Sunday, Jan. 29 (NBC, 7 p.m.) from Aloha Stadium in Honolulu.