The Buffalo Bills have had two players named to the Pro Bowl for 2021, though the biggest news might be who didn’t make the cut: quarterback Josh Allen. Stefon Diggs was chosen to his second Pro Bowl, both with the Bills, and left tackle Dion Dawkins was selected for his first career Pro Bowl appearance. Allen, a second-team All-Pro last season, only landed as a first alternate this time around.
Along with Allen, among the alternates is linebacker Tremaine Edmunds, who was also a Pro Bowl choice in 2020. With the second tier alternates were tight end Dawson Knox (who leads the NFL’s tight ends in touchdowns) and specialist Tyler Matakevich. Jordan Poyer and Reid Ferguson were third alternates, Micah Hyde a fourth alternate, and Mitch Morse and Tyler Bass chosen as fifth alternates for their positions.
In this year’s AFC roster, Allen was beaten out by Patrick Mahomes, Justin Herbert, and Lamar Jackson. Comparing the options, it’s fair to say that Mahomes and Herbert both deserved their selections this year. You just can’t say the same for Jackson, whose season peaked in Week 5 with his 31-25 win over the Indianapolis Colts.
Defensively, it just wasn’t Edmunds’s year, even if the starting choice of Denzel Perryman is pointless to anyone who cares about stats other than total combined tackles. But the real snub is at safety, where only three players made the cut for each conference, and Poyer apparently wasn’t even close. Five interceptions, nine passes defended, five TFLs, and 83 total tackles are just the start of describing Poyer’s impact not just this year, but the last five years with the Bills. But he was snubbed for Kevin Byard, Tyrann Mathieu, and other names.
On the positive side, let’s celebrate Dawkins being awarded for the first time in his career. With his recovery from COVID-19, this season has been a bit up and down, but when he’s good, he’s a brick wall. If you weren’t sure if he deserved it, treat this as a lifetime achievement award—his great play since joining the Bills is worth a nomination five years later.
We’ll also cheer for Diggs, who may not be hitting the highs of last year’s historic season, but is still a top-ten receiver in this season.
Here’s hoping that next year’s Buffalo Bills feature more names in the Pro Bowl, and that this year’s Bills use their snubs as motivation for a deep playoff run.