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Four Bears named Pro Bowl alternates

No Bears were voted to the Pro Bowl, but that could change.

Four Chicago players were named as alternates and could eventually get the call to represent the NFC squad in the annual all-star game Jan. 28 in Orlando. Each year replacements are needed for injured players and those who reach the Super Bowl.

Running back Jordan Howard may have the best chance. The second-year pro, who appeared in the Pro Bowl last season as a rookie, was named a first alternate. He ranks second in the NFC in rushing with 1,069 yards and seven touchdowns on 245 carries.

The three running backs who were voted onto the NFC Pro Bowl squad were the Rams' Todd Gurley and the Saints' Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara.

Bears players who were selected as second alternates were Tarik Cohen as a return specialist and guard Kyle Long, who is on injured reserve. Defensive end Akiem Hicks, who leads the Bears with a career-high eight sacks and 15 tackles-for-loss, was chosen as a fourth alternate.

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