The Bucs announced on Tuesday that WR Vincent Jackson will replace Calvin Johnson on the NFC's Pro Bowl Roster. Jackson, who was signed as a free agent last March, led Tampa Bay in receptions and yards, and will join teammate DT Gerald McCoy in Honolulu for the league's all-star contest.
Tampa Bay wide receiver Vincent Jackson has been named to the 2013 Pro Bowl, joining defensive tackle Gerald McCoy in representing the NFC. Jackson, who was a first alternate for the Pro Bowl, replaces Detroit wide receiver Calvin Johnson, who had to back out of the game due to injury.
This will be Jackson’s third Pro Bowl and his first as a Buccaneer. In his first season in Tampa Bay, Jackson caught 72 passes for 1,384 yards – both were career highs – and eight touchdowns. The last Bucs wide receiver to make the Pro Bowl was Keenan McCardell in 2003.
McCoy, who was voted to the Pro Bowl outright, finished a 16-game season for the first time in his career and was second on the team with a career-high five sacks, 30 tackles, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. This will be the first Pro Bowl appearance for the third-year defensive tackle.
There is a chance that rookie running back Doug Martin can also make the Pro Bowl for the Buccaneers. Because the Pro Bowl is played one week before the Super Bowl, San Francisco running back Frank Gore will have to miss the game to prepare for the Super Bowl if the 49ers win at Atlanta this Sunday in the NFC Championship Game.
Players on teams that have made the Super Bowl are not allowed to participate in the Pro Bowl due to the risk of injury and the time needed to practice with their own team for the championship.
If Martin goes to Hawaii, it would mark the first time a Buccaneers rookie made it to the Pro Bowl since former Tampa Bay running back Warrick Dunn did it in 1997. Martin rushed for 1,454 yards and 11 touchdowns on 319 carries in his first season in the NFL. He also caught caught 49 passes for 472 yards and one touchdown in 2012.
The last member of the Buccaneers to make the Pro Bowl was right guard Davin Joseph in 2011. The last time Tampa Bay had multiple players represent the NFC in Hawaii was in 2008 when Joseph, cornerback Ronde Barber, linebacker Derrick Brooks and kick returner Clifton Smith went to the Pro Bowl.– Mark Cook contributed to this report
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