Eight members of the Buffalo Bills have been selected to represent the American Football Conference in the Feb. 3 Pro Bowl in Hawaii, the National Football League announced today.
The players, all of whom have appeared in the game at least once, were picked in voting Monday by their peers and coaches throughout the conference.
Defensive end Bruce Smith, selected for the fourth year in a row, is among five starters from the Bills.
Center Kent Hull, wide receiver Andre Reed, running back Thurman Thomas and linebacker Shane Conlan are the other Buffalo starters.
Hull, Reed and Conlan will be making their third consecutive trips to Honolulu, while Thomas will be going for the second year in a row.
Named to the team as backups were quarterback Jim Kelly, who will be going for the third time in his career, and linebacker Cornelius Bennett, who will be making his second appearance. Special teams standout Steve Tasker was named for the second time in his career.
Among the Bills who failed to make the Pro Bowl despite being considered strong candidates were linebacker Darryl Talley, offensive guard Jim Ritcher and cornerback Nate Odomes.
The absence of Talley, in particular, was considered by many a surprise. Talley leads the team in tackles with 105, while Conlan is tied for fifth with 85.