Buccaneers linebacker Lavonte David and guard Logan Mankins are alternates no more.
The National Football League announced Monday that both players have been added to the 2016 Pro Bowl roster. According to a press release supplied by the team, David will replace Denver Broncos linebacker DeMarcus Ware, while Mankins will take the place of Carolina Panthers guard Trai Turner.
Bucs LB Lavonte David – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
Tampa Bay now has four representatives participating in the Jan. 31 game in Honolulu. Running back Doug Martin and defensive tackle Gerald McCoy were selected initially and the total number of Bucs matches the most for the franchise since the 2008 season when guard Davin Joseph, linebacker Derrick Brooks, cornerback Ronde Barber and kick returner Clifton Smith were picked.
The elevation in status sends David to his first Pro Bowl and he’s the first Tampa Bay linebacker to go since Brooks in 2008. The fourth-year pro ranked third in the NFL in tackles (147), while leading all linebackers in passes defensed (13) and tying for the second-most interceptions by linebackers (three). Since entering the league as a second-round pick out of Nebraska (58th overall), David ranks first in the league in solo tackles (404), second in total tackles (576), second in tackles for loss (67), second in interceptions by a linebacker (nine) and third in passes defensed by a linebacker (31).
The trip to Hawaii will mark Mankins’ seventh appearance in the annual all-star game. The 11-year veteran was named a team captain this past season and is the first Bucs offensive lineman to be selected since Joseph in 2011. Mankins helped anchor an offensive line that featured four new starters, including two rookies, yet ranked fifth in the NFL in rushing yards per game (135.1), tied for the fourth-fewest sacks allowed (27.0) and fifth in total yards per game (375.9).
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I might have to watch now. Hopefully none of our players get hurt.
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