2018 Pro Bowl: Which Miami Dolphins have best shot at making it?

Kiko Alonso (47) looks like a Pro Bowl candidate for next season (Bill Ingram/The Post)
Kiko Alonso (47) looks like a Pro Bowl candidate for next season (Bill Ingram/The Post)

This year’s Pro Bowl was one of the most enjoyable for the Dolphins in their recent history, but they’re looking for a bigger party next season.

Miami defensive linemen Ndamukong Suh and Cameron Wake were voted starters by the players, coaches and fans, and the NFL added Jarvis Landry and Jay Ajayi as injury replacements. Suh withdrew because of a minor procedure on his knee, but the other three got plenty of run in the AFC’s 20-13 victory in Orlando.

All four players are strong candidates to make it back next year, and the Dolphins have several others who could be in the mix. Rookies Laremy Tunsil and Xavien Howard look primed for breakouts, and some injured Miami players could come back as strongly as Wake did this season.

No team had more representation in the voting than Oakland’s seven selections, so using that as the maximum, here are the Dolphins most likely to earn a spot in next year’s Pro Bowl:

WR Jarvis Landry
It’s time for Landry to get voted in the first time rather than be named as an alternate.

He has the NFL record for most catches in the first three seasons of a career (288) and is in line for a contract extension that will put him among the highest-paid receivers in the league. Landry was fourth in yardage (1,136), third in catches (94), third in yards after catch (593), and there’s little doubt he’ll keep producing at that rate.

LB Kiko Alonso
A Pro Bowl spot would put an emphatic stamp on Alonso’s resurgence. After a strong rookie year with Buffalo in 2013, he missed all of his second season due to injury and was a disappointment in Philadelphia the following year.

The Dolphins took a chance by trading for him, and that gamble paid off tremendously. His 115 tackles were eighth among AFC linebackers, he had a league-high four fumble recoveries and two interceptions. If he can build off that next year, he’s got a shot.

QB Ryan Tannehill
Tannehill very likely would have made the Pro Bowl as a replacement had he not suffered a season-ending knee injury in Week 14. All three AFC quarterbacks pulled out because of injury or the Super Bowl, and the league went all the way down the list to Trevor Siemian in its search for a fill-in.

Tannehill had one of his best seasons with a career-high 93.5 passer rating and looks like he’ll improve even more the longer he’s paired with coach Adam Gase.

DT Ndamukong Suh
Suh doesn’t care about Pro Bowls. It wasn’t surprising at all that he withdrew this year and he might well have no interest in going next year, either. What does concern him, however, is mauling people.

He’s pretty good at that and he’s only 30. Suh led his position in tackles (72), was third in sacks (five) and fourth in hurries (21). Pro Football Focus graded him the best defensive tackle in the AFC, and he’s still got at least another year in his prime.

S Reshad Jones
Jones thinks he’s the best strong safety in the game and has the salary to prove it. He made last year’s Pro Bowl as an injury replacement and was on track to get back there before a shoulder injury ended his season after six games.

In the limited time he was on the field, he looked like Miami’s defensive MVP. Pro Football Focus graded him at 88.5, which would’ve been sixth-best in the league if he kept that up all season. He’ll be 29 at the start of next season and is expected to make a full recovery. He’s far from declining.

RB Jay Ajayi
A case could be made that no one on the current Dolphins roster has more upside than Ajayi. At 23 years old, he ran for 1,272 yards (4.9 per carry) and eight touchdowns. He did that despite not starting four games and playing behind an offensive line that was constantly shuffling because of injuries.

As Miami continues establishing its offensive identity under Gase, Ajayi figures to be the focal point. Look for even bigger numbers from him next season.

DE Cameron Wake
Wake’s earned the benefit of the doubt. Few thought he could play at a Pro Bowl level after suffering a ruptured Achilles tendon in 2015, and he roared back with 11.5 sacks. That was the third-highest total of his career and it matched what he had the last time he was healthy for a full season.

While it might seem unlikely he can hit that number again at 35—eight of the top 12 in sacks this year were 27 or younger—the smart move is to err on the side of believing in Wake.

[Jay Ajayi’s fantastic night at the Pro Bowl]

[Jarvis Landry says a Pro Bowl means nothing, he wants something bigger]

[How close was Bill Belichick to coaching for the Dolphins?]

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