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NFL World Reacts To Pro Bowl Replacement Announcement

Pro Bowl logo

ORLANDO, FL - JANUARY 28: A general view of the Pro Bowl Logo on the field at Camping World Stadium before the start of 2018 Pro Bowl Game between the AFC Team against the NFC Team on January 28, 2018 in Orlando, Florida. (Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images)

Aaron Donald made his ninth consecutive Pro Bowl roster despite missing the final six weeks with a high ankle sprain.

A day after confirming his plans to keep playing next season, the Los Angeles Rams star officially pulled out of the Pro Bowl. Per ESPN's Adam Schefter, Washington Commander defensive tackle Daron Payne will take Donald's place.

Some fans read too much into the decision as retirement speculation surfaced. Yet it's hardly shocking for a veteran superstar recovering from an injury to skip a flag football game.

"Because...?" one fan wondered.

"Aaron Donald doesn't have time to play flag football," another said.

"Not really a surprise here as Donald missed the latter third of the season with the high-ankle sprain," The Athletic's Jourdan Rodrigue wrote. "If Kupp hadn't upgraded rehab to football activity by the end of the year, no reason to think Donald would have.

"Good," a fan said. "Donald shouldn't have been voted in, in the first place."

"Should’ve made it from the start," a fan said of Payne.

Donald posted 49 tackles with a career-low five sacks and 11 quarterback hits in his ninth season. Payne, meanwhile, received his first Pro Bowl invite after registering 64 tackles (18 for a loss), 11.5 sacks, and 20 quarterback hits.

Plenty of more replacements will likely follow before the All-Star exhibition takes place in Las Vegas on Feb. 5.