Thursday, January 6, 2011

Patriots' Matt Light to replace Jake Long in Pro Bowl

The man who famously ripped the helmet off Channing Crowder and punched him in the back of the head during a 2008 scuffle will replace Crowder's teammate in this month's Pro Bowl.

New England Patriots veteran offensive tackle Matt Light has been selected to replaced the Miami Dolphins' Jake Long for the AFC squad in the 2011 all-star battle.

It will be Long's second consecutive missed Pro Bowl, as a knee injury forced him out of the contest a year ago.

Selected to his third Pro Bowl in as many seasons since being drafted first overall in 2008, Long suffered a torn labrum in his shoulder in November and played through the injury during the regular season.

Long allowed just five sacks during the 2010 season and was widely considered the top- performing offensive tackle in the league prior to his injury.

For Light, it will be the fourth Pro Bowl selection of his career and first since 2007. He started all 16 games for the Patriots in 2010 and helped the team ranked fourth in the league in sacks allowed.

However, it's possible Light's place on the team may not last very long, as the Pro Bowl is played a week before the Super Bowl and the No. 1 seed Patriots are still very much alive in the playoffs.

The Dolphins now have just one player slated to participate in the Pro Bowl, in second-year starting outside linebacker Cameron Wake.

Wake ranked third in the NFL with 14 sacks while also contributing 57 tackles and three forced fumbles.

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