Bucs LB Lavonte David - Photo by: Getty Images
It wasn’t the conventional way, but Bucs linebacker Lavonte David and guard Logan Mankins will join Gerald McCoy and Doug Martin in Honolulu representing Tampa Bay in the NFL Pro Bowl.
With Denver and Carolina headed to Super Bowl 50, David, the first alternate, takes the place of Broncos’ Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware and the Panthers’ Thomas Davis in Hawaii next week.
Mankins replaces Trai Turner of the Panthers.
Many fans, for good reason, thought David deserved the nod in the first place. The weakside linebacker finished the 2015 season as the NFL’s third-leading tackler with 147, while adding three interceptions, two sacks and two forced fumbles in all 16 starts.
He and rookie Kwon Alexander proved to be one of the league’s best linebacker duos this season, leaving a great deal of promise for the young defense in the future.
David was voted AP First-Team All-Pro in 2013 and has been recognized by his peers twice in the NFL Network’s Top 100 Players series, but this season marks his first Pro Bowl appearance.
Last month after the initial Pro Bowl roster was announced, McCoy took exception to the fact that David was left off of the Pro Bowl roster.
“Everybody works hard to get to where they’re at, but the system is flawed,” McCoy said. “You’ve got to break that down and split it up. There’s no way he can keep getting treated like this because he’s a true 4-3 outside linebacker. If you ask me, he’s the best at being that and he keeps getting played. Something has to be done.”
Manins helped anchor an offensive line that set franchise records in 2015, including total yards from scrimmage, and also protected quarterback Jameis Winston who excelled as a rookie. Mankins and his offensive line counterparts paved the way for Martin’s Pro Bowl season, and the duo of Martin and Charles Sims were the top running back duos in the NFL in 2015.
The addition of Mankins marks the seventh time the former Patriots standout has been selected to the Pro Bowl. Shortly after the 2014 season, one that was a total disaster for the Bucs offense led by Marcus Arroyo, Mankins vowed to the Bucs front office that he would rebound and reclaim a spot in the Pro Bowl, something he accomplished with the announcement on Sunday.
Zach is entering his 3rd year covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a writer for PewterReport.com. Since 2014, he's handled a large part of the beat reporting responsibilities at PR, attending all media gatherings and publishing and promoting content daily. Zach is a native of Sarasota, FL, and a graduate of the University of Tampa. He has also covered high school football for the Tampa Tribune and the NFL for Pro Player Insiders.
Contact him at: [email protected]
I love to see Buccaneer players get some love at Pro Bowl time, and also wish it was pure selection, notoriety, etc, and they didn’t have to play. I recall Lee Roy Selmon incurring a back injury while participating, ending a Hall of Fame career prematurely.
Mankins was such a leader for our young offensive unit – something we have lacked sorely. Here is hoping new Def Coordinator Smith will help make David the playmaker that will put him on First team Pro Bowl year after year. He has the tackles, just needs more game changing plays, forced fumbles, interceptions, sacks, etc, but I am glad he will be representing us. I’ve been a big fan since we drafted him….
Maybe I’ll watch the game now.
Same here Scu.
How could we go 6-10 with 4 players in the pro bowl-2 on offense an 2 on defense?
iAM LOOKING FOR TO SEE tAMPA BAY IN PROBOWL AGAIN-gO bUCS
bECAUSE 76bUC WE DID, AND THAT TELLS YOU THAT tAMPA IS NOT THAT BAD OFF. In2016 Tampa bay will be knocking on the door again-Go Bucs
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