Along with the Raiders’ seven Pro Bowl selections this year, they also had seven alternatives. Thus far, four of the Raiders’ Pro Bowlers have opted out due to injury. But none of the team’s alternates have gotten called up as replacements. That could change today.
As if Raiders fans needed another reason to root for the Steelers to take down the Patriots, here are three more. Whichever teams make the Super Bowl, their Pro Bowl players will be replaced by alternates. Should the Steelers head to the Super Bowl, it could send as many as three Raiders to Orlando depending on their place in the order of alternates.
Wide receiver Michael Crabtree for Antonio Brown (Steelers)
So far, two AFC Pro Bowlers have opted out of the game. Raiders’ Amari Cooper and Bengals’ AJ Green. They were replaced by Emmanuel Sanders and Jarvis Landry respectively. The two known alternates remaining are Crabtree and Demaryius Thomas. While Thomas had 80 more yards (1083), Crabtree had three more touchdowns (8). And with Thomas’s Broncos teammate already being named as an alternate, there’s a good chance Crabtree could get the call.
Guard Gabe Jackson for David DeCastro (Steelers)
Thus far, only Ravens’ guard Marshal Yanda has withdrawn from the Pro Bowl. He was replaced by Bills guard Ritchie Incognito. There are no other known alternates at the guard position besides Jackson. That means if the Steelers head to the Super Bowl, he could very well join fellow offensive linemen Kelechi Osemele and Rodney Hudson in Orlando to make up an all Silver & Black interior offensive line.
Running back Latavius Murray for Le’Veon Bell (Steelers)
So far, only Bills LeSean McCoy has opted out of the Pro Bowl. He was replaced by Dolphins’ running back Jay Ajayi. Along with Murray, Chargers Melvin Gordon is also an alternate. Gordon is most likely the next up in the order due to his 997 yards rushing and 10 touchdowns which is 209 yards more than Murray (788) and two less TD’s (12). However, Gordon suffered from a knee and hip injury that had him miss the final three games of the season which could potentially keep him from playing in the game, opening the door for Murray as the replacement.