Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown will not play in this year’s Pro Bowl due to an injury, it was announced by the team on Monday. Additionally, Steelers wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster was named as Brown’s Pro Bowl replacement on Monday.
JuJu Smith-Schuster has been named to the 2019 #ProBowl.
— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) January 7, 2019
Brown bowing out of this year’s Pro Bowl isn’t overly surprising and especially with the way his final week of the regular season went. Brown, who showed up on the Steelers injury report in Week 17 with a knee injury, is likely using that as his excuse to bypass this year’s Pro Bowl as he recently posted a video on his Instagram account of him running full-speed on a treadmill. Had Brown played in the Pro Bowl he would have had to spend the entire week answering questions about his future status with the Steelers in addition to explaining why he went AWOL the few days prior to the team’s home finale against the Cincinnati Bengals.
Smith-Schuster being named as Brown’s Pro Bowl replacement on Monday is quite fitting. Not only did the team’s second-round draft pick in 2017 lead the team in receptions and receiving yardage in 2018, he was also voted the team’s MVP during the final week of the regular season. Smith-Schuster caught 111 passes for 1,426 yards and 7 touchdowns this past season with a long of 97 yards that went for a touchdown against the Denver Broncos.
Brown registered 104 receptions for 1,297 yards and 15 touchdowns for the Steelers this past season. He finished eighth-overall in the Pro Bowl fan voting this year and it marked the sixth consecutive season and seventh time overall in his nine-year career he was voted to the Pro Bowl. Brown, however, failed to make All-Pro this year as he received just 2 votes in total and just one more than Smith-Schuster received.
The 2019 Pro Bowl presented by Verizon, which kicks off at 3:00 PM ET, will be televised live on ESPN, ESPN Deportes, Disney XD and simulcast on ABC – the second time the game will be available on both broadcast and cable networks, and the first time that the game is being televised on Disney XD.
Tickets to the game are on sale at NFL.com/ProBowlOnSale. New this year, tickets will also grant fans special benefits on gameday, including AFC & NFC seating sections, player red carpet viewing, special kid zone activities and postgame fireworks.