For the second straight year, Detroit Lions receiver Calvin Johnson won’t play in the Pro Bowl despite being selected to the NFC team.
Johnson, who broke the NFL’s single-season record with 1,964 receiving yards, was hampered by a knee injury for much of the season.
General manager Martin Mayhew said during a postseason interview that it didn’t appear Johnson needed surgery on the ailing knee but that rest was essential.
Johnson frequently missed practice throughout the season, but he never missed a game.
“To do it (break the record) when he’s fighting through all these different injuries … I can’t say enough about the job that Calvin Johnson did and the player he is and the person he is,” Mayhew said. “I was just amazed by the accomplishment.”
Tampa Bay receiver Vincent Jackson is expected to take Johnson’s spot on the NFC roster. The Pro Bowl is Jan. 27 in Honolulu.
Long snapper Don Muhlbach was added to the NFC team by coach Mike McCarthy.
Muhlbach, in his ninth season with the Lions, has been extremely reliable in his role. Kicker Jason Hanson called him “a huge part of my success.”
“He is as accurate and consistent as there is in the league,” Hanson said. “This is a great honor for him and is well deserved.”