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Vikings RT Brian O'Neill Named to First Career Pro Bowl as Injury Replacement

O'Neill takes Tristan Wirfs' spot and joins three Vikings teammates in the game.

Vikings right tackle Brian O'Neill has been named to the 2022 Pro Bowl as an injury replacement for Tampa Bay's Tristan Wirfs. It's the first career Pro Bowl nod for the fourth-year player from Pitt.

This is a cool honor for O'Neill after a very strong season. He played over 1,100 snaps across all 17 games for the Vikings, and didn't allow a sack until the meaningless regular season finale, per PFF. O'Neill was tied for fifth among all NFL tackles in PFF's pass blocking efficiency metric and only committed five penalties all year.

What makes O'Neill such a great player is that he can pass protect at a very high level while also adding incredible value in the running game because of his athleticism. He continues to improve in both areas every year.

The 2018 second-round pick out of Pitt has turned into a steal for the Vikings. He started the final 11 games a rookie and was highly impressive. He's been the best player on Minnesota's offensive line ever since and has never missed a game due to injury in his four-year career.

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The O-line has mostly been a weakness for the Vikings for the last decade or so, but O'Neill is a bright spot. As evidence of that, he's the team's first offensive lineman to be named to the Pro Bowl since Matt Kalil made it as a rookie in 2012. The Vikings do appear to be set up fairly well up front heading into 2022, with O'Neill and Christian Darrisaw at tackle and Ezra Cleveland coming into his own at left guard. If they can address the other two spots — currently held by Garrett Bradbury and Mason Cole/Oli Udoh — they could have a strong OL next season.

O'Neill joins Justin Jefferson, Dalvin Cook, and Harrison Smith as the Vikings in this year's Pro Bowl. The game will take place at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas on Sunday, February 6th.

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