FRISCO, Texas – As the Cowboys prepare to coach in the Pro Bowl, they learned they'll be adding another of their players to the proceedings this week.
With Julio Jones preparing to play in Super Bowl LI, the league announced that Dez Bryant will join the Pro Bowl lineup as his replacement for the all-star game. This will mark Bryant's third appearance in the Pro Bowl, along with his nominations in 2013 and 2014.
It was an up-and-down season for Bryant, who returned to action after an injury-plagued campaign during the Cowboys' 4-12 season in 2015. He finished the season with 50 receptions for 796 yards and eight touchdowns – numbers which were undoubtedly influenced by a three-game absence due to a knee injury.
The numbers don't stack up to some of Bryant's other seasons, but there's no doubt he finished the year on a tear. In the final month of 2016, he posted some of his best outings of the season – eight catches for 82 yards against Tampa and a 70-yard, two-touchdown performance against Detroit that also saw him throw a touchdown pass. In the process, he moved into second all-time in Cowboys history for career receiving touchdowns, as he passed Michal Irvin and now stands at 67 for his career.
Bryant finished his seventh NFL season with one of the best performances of his entire career, as he posted nine receptions for 132 yards and two touchdowns in the 34-31 playoff loss to Green Bay.
The strong finish was enough for Bryant to hear his name called once Jones and the Falcons departed for the Super Bowl. His inclusion brings the Cowboys' tally up to seven Pro Bowlers, as the wide out will join Dak Prescott, Ezekiel Elliott, Tyron Smith, Travis Frederick, Zack Martin and Sean Lee on the NFC roster.