The Pro Bowl
By Justin Sanders,
5:04PM, Thu. Feb. 5, 2009
Every year football fans invest themselves in the NFL to the point where they practically live and die with every game. For six months their emotions rise and fall with the success or failure of their teams until February rolls around and everyone celebrates the Super Bowl. It’s the ultimate game. Whether you shell out a small fortune to attend the game in person or just watch the game with some friends, the Super Bowl is the big finish to the long season. Unfortunately, instead of ending the season with the Super Bowl (like it should) the NFL stubbornly follows the game with the Pro Bowl, where fans get to watch the league’s best players phone it in for a free trip to Hawaii.
The Pro Bowl sucks. I’m sorry to burst the NFL’s bubble but the fans know it, the players know it, and it’s time that Roger Goodell realized it too. There’s a reason why the game is held in Hawaii every year, and that’s because it’s the only way that the league can entice players to show up. Honestly, if you were an athlete would you want to play in a meaningless game after having your ass kicked for 16 regular-season games? Not to mention that most of the NFL players that get invited to the Pro Bowl are rich and can afford to go to Hawaii anytime they want, without having to worry about attending position meetings while the rest of their family works on their tans.
That’s why I think that the NFL should follow the NBA and MLB’s lead and hold their all-star game in the middle of the season. Not only would it bring more interest to the game, but it would also give the players an extra week to re-energize themselves for the second half of the season. The only drawbacks to holding the Pro Bowl in the middle of the season would be the injury concerns and the fact that the game would probably no longer be able to be held in Hawaii due to travel constraints. Still, I think that both the team owners and the players would agree that moving the game to midseason is a win-win situation when they take into consideration how much money the NBA has made from its previous all-star weekends and the fact that tons of groupies always swarm to these games to try and attract the attention of a player.
It’s time for the NFL to realize that no one wants to watch football after the Super Bowl. Watching the Pro Bowl one week after the biggest game of the season is like watching the closing credits of an action movie because at that point no one cares! As it is now, the game is a boring, unwatched joke that gets about as many viewers as Big Brother 15. A move to the middle of the season would benefit everyone by giving the players a midseason break, the owners more money and most importantly it would bring some excitement back to the game which would benefit the fans. Or we could just keep it the way it is now and keep sending Chris Berman’s fat ass to Hawaii to report on a game that no one watches.
[Editor's note: Another good idea for the Pro Bowl game would be to hold it on the weekend prior to the Super Bowl. Pro Bowlers from the Super Bowl teams would sit the all-star game out. That way if a player gets injured he has the entire offseason to recover and it solves the biggest problem of all, which is that the Pro Bowl is an anti-climatic ending to a season that should end with the Super Bowl, as Justin stated.]