NEW YORK – Tom Brady overtook Michael Vick to lead all players in the final fan voting for the Pro Bowl.

Brady, the New England Patriots’ quarterback, had nearly 1.9 million votes when balloting ended Monday. The NFL said Wednesday that Vick topped the NFC with more than 1.5 million.

Almost 100 million votes were cast online and via mobile phones.

Fans account for one-third of the selection process. Players and coaches vote Wednesday and today.

The 43-man rosters will be announced Tuesday.

Players leading their position voting include Houston Texans running back Arian Foster and wide receiver Andre Johnson, Pittsburgh Steelers strong safety Troy Polamalu and Indianapolis Colts defensive end Dwight Freeney.

PATRIOTS: Tom Brady is suffering from the flu and skipped Wednesday’s practice.

The NFL’s top-rated quarterback also was listed on the practice report with right shoulder and foot injuries, as he had been the last six games, all Patriots victories in which he played.

Dan Connolly missed the practice with a concussion three days after his 71-yard kickoff return against Green Bay, believed to be the longest by an NFL offensive lineman.

CHARGERS: Tight end Antonio Gates likely will sit out the final two games of the regular season to rest his injured right foot in case the Chargers make the playoffs.

Gates has missed the last two games and four of six with a painful tear in his right plantar fascia. Gates said the team’s other tight ends, Randy McMichael and Kris Wilson, are more than capable of doing the job.

“Based on the history of the injury, there’s no speedy recovery,” Gates said. “Time is key. Not only do I need time, but I need rest.”

In order to win their fifth straight AFC West title, the Chargers (8-6) need to win their final two games, at Cincinnati on Sunday and at Denver on Jan. 2, and have Kansas City lose once.

JETS: Mark Sanchez is ready to play, even if his shoulder is still a bit sore.

Sanchez, the Jets’ quarterback, was limited in practice, but insisted he’ll be under center when the team plays at Chicago on Sunday whether or not his right shoulder is 100 percent.

“I’m in there,” Sanchez said. “I’m playing, that’s all there is to it. I have to be on the field. That’s what I’m here for and that’s what I’m going to do.”

The Jets (10-4) would clinch a playoff spot, their second straight under Coach Rex Ryan, with a win over the Bears (10-4).

PACKERS: Aaron Rodgers returned to practice. With the playoffs still a realistic possibility, he’s expected to start Sunday’s game against the Giants.

And while Rodgers acknowledges he’ll be careful about sliding instead of taking a direct hit when he scrambles in the future, he says coming back from his second concussion this season won’t fundamentally change the way he plays.

“I have zero doubts taking the field,” Rodgers said. “I feel confident. I’ve been cleared. The doctors are confident. I’m going to continue to play the way I play.”

Rodgers didn’t play in Sunday night’s loss at New England.

BROWNS: Colt McCoy missed practice, and this time it had nothing to do with his ankle.

Cleveland’s rookie quarterback sat out while his teammates worked out in cold, snowy conditions. The team said on their initial injury report of the week that McCoy had an “illness.”

RAVENS: Rookie linebacker Sergio Kindle might be forced to miss a second straight season in 2011 because of the uncertain status of his fractured skull.

Baltimore’s top draft pick this year has yet to play in the NFL. He sat out this season after falling down two flights of stairs in late July at a friend’s house in Austin, Texas.

COLTS: Receiver Austin Collie suffered a concussion Sunday against Jacksonville, and the team placed him on injured reserve Wednesday. Collie leads all Indianapolis receivers with eight touchdown catches and is second in receptions with 58.


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