Just one year ago, long before a blockbuster trade sent him from New York to Tampa Bay, cornerback Darrelle Revis was merely hoping he could make it back onto the playing field in time for the regular season.
Regaining the form that made him one of the most dynamic and feared defenders in the National Football League and earned him the nickname ‘Revis Island’ — it seemed like an insurmountable odd.
But on Friday evening, exactly 460 days since he suffered a torn ACL that ended his 2012 season just two games in, Revis received an honor signifying that he had, in fact, reclaimed his spot as one of the top players at his position, at least in the eyes of his peers and fans — he was named to the Pro Bowl for the fifth time in his seven-year career.
“It’s always an honor to get selected to the Pro Bowl and I’m looking forward to participating in the new format,” Revis said in a statement released by the team. “While I still believe I’m capable of more, this selection shows that people around the league respect the way I prepare and play.”
Through 15 games this season, Revis recorded 47 combined tackles, 40 solo tackles, one sack, two forced fumbles, ten pass breakups and two interceptions. His fourth-quarter interception against the Dolphins sealed the Bucs’ first win of the season on Monday Night Football.
He will be joined by defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, who was named to the Pro Bowl for the second-consecutive year.
“He definitely erased No. 1 receivers off the map during games,” McCoy said just after the announcement.
“These guys that dominate week-in and week-out, they play us, [and] our stats may not be the best as far as passing defense, but if you look at that one guy that Darrelle was guarding for that week, his numbers [were] very low. That’s the thing you get when you have Revis…You take out that guy and the whole side of the field.”
Two years ago, McCoy was in Revis’ position when he was coming off of, not one, but two torn biceps, both of which ended his seasons prematurely.
“Coming off a season-ending injury, it takes extreme mental toughness to be able to bounce back and be who you used to be, or even better,” McCoy said, echoing Revis’ comments about being capable of more.
“He is so talented and so gifted and he works so hard at being the best, that even not being a hundred percent, he still has played at a Pro Bowl level.”
Weakside linebacker Lavonte David, who has enjoyed a breakout season despite the team’s 4-11 record and has posted record numbers, was not named to the roster.