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Brian Cushing and the Texans upset with Pro Bowl snub

Brian Cushing,  T.J. Ward

Houston Texans inside linebacker Brian Cushing, right, reacts after being hit by Cleveland Browns’ Shawn Lauvao, as T.J. Ward, left, holds him off, in the second quarter of an NFL football game on Sunday, Nov. 6, 2011, in Houston. Lauvao was called for a personal foul on the play. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)


Duane Brown isn’t the only player on the Houston Texans to be upset about a Pro Bowl snub.

Linebacker Brian Cushing told the Houston Chronicle he’s mad that he wasn’t picked for the Pro Bowl.

I’d be lying to you if I said I wasn’t,” Cushing said. “I play this game to be the best, and I’m never going to hide that. Obviously, [the voters] don’t think I’m good enough yet, and I’ll continue to [improve]. As far as motivation and a driving force, this is going to be a big one.”

Texans defensive coordinator Wade Phillips said people on the outside don’t realize the extent to which Cushing makes the Texans’ defense work.

“They don’t see how many plays [Cushing] makes that are unseen, unless you put the camera on it, slow it down and go in slow motion,” Phillips said. “I know a lot of people are deserving, but that guy’s a holy phenom now. He’s one of the best I’ve coached, and I’ve been at it a long time.”

Texans defensive end Antonio Smith said it’s a “travesty” that Cushing isn’t going to the Pro Bowl, but he also said it’s amusing to see the way the snub has lit a fire under Cushing.

“A total mockery of the game, but it’s also funny to watch Cushing be mad,” Smith said. “What they just did might have made this defense better. He’s going to kill everybody.”

The reality is that Cushing has had a good season, but so have the two AFC inside linebackers chosen for the Pro Bowl, Baltimore’s Ray Lewis and Kansas City’s Derrick Johnson. If the Texans feel that Cushing is deserving they may be right, but Cushing was far from the worst snub in this year’s Pro Bowl balloting.

UPDATE 12:04 p.m. ET: Rodney Harrison thinks Cushing was snubbed.