Quarterbacks Tony Romo and Donovan McNabb were among a slew of Pro Bowl replacements
Quarterbacks Tony Romo and Donovan McNabb were among a slew of Pro Bowl replacements selected Monday in place of players competing in the Super Bowl and some who played in the AFC and NFC title games Sunday.
The Cowboys‘ Romo, replacing Vikings quarterback Brett Favre, will be making his third appearance and McNabb his sixth. McNabb was named in place of quarterback Drew Brees, who led the Saints past the Vikings on Sunday in the NFC Championship Game.
The Cowboys’ nine players will also include first-time Pro Bowl cornerback Mike Jenkins, who will fill in for the Vikings’ Antoine Winfield. Romo set Cowboys single-season records with 4,483 passing yards, 347 completions, 550 attempts and eight 300-yard games.
This year’s Pro Bowl is being held Sunday, a week before the Super Bowl, rather than after the end of the season as in years past.
Other additions include:
• Jaguars quarterback David Garrard
• Cardinals safety Antrel Rolle
• Chargers receiver Vincent Jackson
• Steelers tight end Heath Miller
• Titans defensive end Kyle Vanden Bosch
• Jets defensive end Shaun Ellis
• Redskins linebacker London Fletcher
• Giants offensive tackle David Diehl
• Giants guard Chris Snee
• Panthers center Ryan Kalil
• Bears kick returner Johnny Knox.
Mathis is unable to play in the NFL’s all-star game in Miami on Sunday because he’ll be preparing for the Super Bowl against New Orleans the following week. Mathis is one of seven Colts players being replaced on the Pro Bowl roster.
Ellis will play in his second Pro Bowl, and first since the 2003 season, despite having a broken left hand that requires surgery.
Ellis had 6 1/2 sacks during the regular season and ranks third in franchise history with 68 sacks. He joins cornerback Darrelle Revis, left guard Alan Faneca, center Nick Mangold and left tackle D’Brickashaw Ferguson as Jets in the Pro Bowl.
Mikell, who joined the Eagles as an undrafted free agent out of Boise State, replaces the Saints’ Darren Sharper. It is Mikell’s first Pro Bowl nod.
Garrard, who passed for 3,597 yards, with 15 touchdowns and 10 interceptions with a 60.9 completion percentage in 2009, will replace Peyton Manning as a backup. Garrard joins Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew on the AFC’s roster.
Miller and Fletcher will be making their first Pro Bowl appearances.
Miller set career highs with 76 receptions and 789 yards for Pittsburgh this season. Fletcher had 95 tackles and two sacks.
Miller joins defensive tackle Casey Hampton and linebackers James Harrison and LaMarr Woodley as the four Steelers to make the Pro Bowl. Last week Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger also was selected as an alternate to replace the injured Tom Brady of the New England Patriots. But Roethlisberger turned down the invite after team doctors recommended he rest a shoulder injury that was suffered in Pittsburgh’s regular-season finale against the Miami Dolphins.
Fletcher joins Redskins rookie linebacker Brian Orakpo.
Fletcher said he “did a little sprinting around the house” when the Saints kicked an overtime field goal Sunday to beat Minnesota.
Fletcher is the league’s most prolific tackler over the past decade and has never missed a game in his 12-year career.
He was upset when he wasn’t selected last season, calling himself “the Susan Lucci of the NFL,” a reference to the soap opera star who was nominated 18 times for an Emmy before finally winning.
The last Bears rookie to make the Pro Bowl was return specialist Devin Hester after the 2006 season.
Knox caught 45 passes for 527 yards and five touchdowns, but he was more dangerous returning kickoffs. He racked up 927 yards, including a 102-yard score versus Detroit on Oct. 4.
Knox, a fifth round draft choice out of Abilene Christian, originally was voted as a second alternate to the Pro Bowl.