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Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Cruz, Snee, JPP voted to Pro Bowl

By Ohm Youngmisuk

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Victor Cruz will get a chance to salsa in Hawaii.

The New York Giants wide receiver was named to the NFC Pro Bowl team on Wednesday. Cruz, a second alternate last season, joins defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul and guard Chris Snee as the only Pro Bowl representatives from the defending Super Bowl champs.

Victor Cruz
With one game remaining, Victor Cruz is ninth in the NFC with 1,040 receiving yards.
Pierre-Paul will start for the NFC. He was voted to the Pro Bowl last season, but could not play because the Giants were preparing for the Super Bowl.

Cruz, making his first appearance, and Snee, named to his fourth Pro Bowl, are backups.

Kicker Lawrence Tynes is a first alternate, and quarterback Eli Manning and rookie kick returner David Wilson are second alternates. Center David Baas and safety Stevie Brown are fourth alternates for the NFC.

Cruz, 26, garnered the most fan votes for NFC receivers, with 515,811. The fan vote counts for one-third of the selection process, which also includes the coaches' and players' votes. The game will be played Jan. 27 at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu.

"I'm honored and humbled to be selected," Cruz said in a statement released by the Giants. "It really is a dream come true for me. The Pro Bowl is a great individual achievement, but I know I couldn't have been named to the Pro Bowl without the support of my teammates. Eli is one of the great quarterbacks in the game. He has done so much for my career.

"Right now, I'm really focused on going out Sunday and our team playing as well as it can, getting a great team win against the Eagles and hoping we get the opportunity to further our season."

Cruz was hoping to make the Pro Bowl last year after he broke out with 82 receptions for 1,536 yards and nine touchdowns. But Detroit's Calvin Johnson, Arizona's Larry Fitzgerald, Carolina's Steve Smith and Green Bay's Greg Jennings earned Pro Bowl spots for the NFC.

This season, Cruz has 82 receptions for 1,040 yards and nine touchdowns with one game remaining.

Pierre-Paul, 23, leads the Giants with 6.5 sacks after having 16.5 last year. The defensive end is fourth on the Giants with 61 tackles, including a team-leading 12 tackles for losses.

"Just like last year, I would much rather not play in the game because I want to be with my team at the Super Bowl," Pierre-Paul said. "But it's a great honor to be selected among the best in the NFL at my position."

Snee is the first Giants player to be selected to four Pro Bowls since tight end Jeremy Shockey.

"It's always an honor to be selected to the Pro Bowl," Snee said. "It doesn't quite feel right coming off of our last two performances [losses to Atlanta and Baltimore], but it is an honor because you've earned the respect of your peers, the coaches and, of course, the fans."