BOSTON (CBS) — Four Patriots were selected to represent the AFC in this year’s Pro Bowl.
Quarterback Tom Brady, LB Dont’a Hightower, DB Devin McCourty and WR Matthew Slater were chosen as representatives of the Patriots for the AFC.
Brady, 39, has put together a remarkable season, even compared to his own high standards. After missing the first four games due to suspension, he has completed 66.9 percent of his passes for 3,064 yards, 22 touchdowns and just two interceptions. Brady has been selected as a Pro Bowler 11 times before in his career. He recently set the all-time NFL record for most wins by a starting quarterback, a mark he currently owns with 203 victories.
This will be Hightower’s first Pro Bowl. He has started 63 of 66 games in his five-year career. In 2016, Hightower was named a captain by his teammates.
McCourty is in his seventh season with the Patriots and sixth as a defensive captain. He has started in all 105 games he’s played in since then, but he has not made the Pro Bowl since he was selected as a rookie in 2010.
Slater has earned his sixth consecutive Pro Bowl as a special teams player. His first was in 2011, just after his teammates had named him captain for the first time.
Players were selected based on votes from fans, coaches, and players themselves. The announcement of the selected players was made Tuesday night.
This year’s Pro Bowl will return to the traditional AFC vs. NFC format, after three years of having captains choose players. It will take place in Orlando on Sunday, Jan. 29, on the weekend between the conference title games and the Super Bowl. Players selected for the Pro Bowl who are on teams playing in the Super Bowl will not be participating in the Pro Bowl, so it’s fair to assume that no New England football fans are hoping to actually see the Patriots players take the field that night in Orlando.
This year’s Pro Bowl festivities will include a dodgeball competition, a relay race, a passing contest, and a “best hands” contest featuring quarterback and receiver duos.