South Stands Denver on Facebook South Stands Denver on Linkedin South Stands Denver on Twitter South Stands Denver on Google+

Has the Broncos' championship window already slammed shut?

Has the Broncos' championship window already slammed shut?

"It's the strangest kind of transition period and it's impossible to say how things may shake out once the 2015 Denver Broncos take the field." click the read more link below...

Crap my kid Photoshopped for me: The Melvin Hunt for Red October

Crap my kid Photoshopped for me: The Melvin Hunt for Red October

My son is at it again. The Drew Litton of Photoshop brings you the movie poster some Nuggets fans prefer to see for the rest of this season and well...

Brian Shaw was just a symptom of Nuggets’ sickness

Brian Shaw was just a symptom of Nuggets’ sickness

"It’s a team without an identity. It’s a team that says it wants to win but doesn’t appear to know how to. It’s a team for whom relative success (under...

The silence is deafening. Is Peyton really coming back?

The silence is deafening. Is Peyton really coming back?

"-There’s nothing stopping Manning from forcing Denver’s hand. “Pay me or cut me” could very well be his stance. And he’s perfectly justified in taking it." click the read more link...

Suddenly everybody hates Julius Thomas

Suddenly everybody hates Julius Thomas

"Broncos Country loved JT and now he's being run out of town on a digital rail becuase of one article written by one sports radio host based on the comments...

Crap my kid Photoshopped for me: Only Bill could make Pete look like ...

Crap my kid Photoshopped for me: Only Bill could make Pete look like ...

Pete Carroll is no angel. But the head coach of the Patriots makes him look like one.

Radio Row: Say goodbye to the Press Box

Radio Row: Say goodbye to the Press Box

"The success of the Press Box show earned Peter Burns national attention and that attention ultimately led to his being discovered by ESPN and eventually hired to anchor the new...

OK, Peyton. One more year and that's it, okay?

OK, Peyton. One more year and that's it, okay?

"Pretty much everything Peyton Manning is yet to do can be done in 2015 - including winning a Super Bowl in a Broncos uniform. But after that he's got to...

It's time for the Broncos to stop walking on Manning's eggshells.

It's time for the Broncos to stop walking on Manning's eggshells.

"So long as number 18 is suiting up for the Denver Broncos the Denver Broncos will be built around Peyton Manning. The offense will be designed in his image and...

The Broncos should stick with plan "A" if only for one more year

The Broncos should stick with plan "A" if only for one more year

"Peyton Manning and John Fox are a package. It would be senseless for the Broncos to fire Fox and hire a replacement for Manning's "one last run" at the playoffs....

Radio Row: Another shoe drops in the rapidly changing sports radio scene. How much more is to come?

Radio Row: Another shoe drops in the rapidly changing sports radio scene. How much more is to come?

"It is possible, however, that Front Range Sports, now flush with the $5.75M it received from Colorado Public Radio for the 102.3 signal, could make a play to purchase the...

Godspeed, Adrian Dater. Godspeed.

Godspeed, Adrian Dater. Godspeed.

"Well, the communications must have been real. She was, if her Twitter account was to be believed, quite upset with Dater for his actions and she launched a personal campaign...

Is “Super Creepy” Adrian Dater posing more problems for the Post?

Is “Super Creepy” Adrian Dater posing more problems for the Post?

"Deadspin has once again become interested in Dater’s exploits on Twitter. This time the site was contacted by a female hockey fan who provided screen grabs of some rather creepy...

Pro leagues / teams are making deals with the Devil in daily fantasy sports

Pro leagues / teams are making deals with the Devil in daily fantasy sports

"The industry has cleverly slipped into the loopholes left in the gaming act and in doing so has essentially replaced online poker as the most popular form of internet gambling." CLICK...

A stunning Broncos loss has made us normal people again

A stunning Broncos loss has made us normal people again

"Better now than later, I say. Better for the fans. Better for the team. Not only do the Broncos now have a better perspective on how they might be beaten...

«
»
Saturday, 26 January 2013 12:58

Here’s how to make the Pro Bowl not suck

Written by 
Rate this item
(1 Vote)

"Interest in the Pro Bowl is not only waning in the eyes of the public – the event also means less to the players than it used to. It seems to become less important with each passing year. Still, it would be a crying shame to eliminate it. It’s football, after all. America loves football. The NFL should fix the Pro Bowl once and for all"

Read more

Most lovers of the NFL support the idea of the league hosting an annual All-Star game. It’s fun to vote for the best players and to see them honored by their peers and coaches by being selected to participate. Unfortunately, the Pro Bowl sucks. It has sucked for a long time – long enough that fans are sick of it. It has gotten to the point where it’s far cooler to make fun of the Pro Bowl than it is to actually watch it.

The NFL has made various tweaks to the Pro Bowl over the years in the interest of re-stoking America’s interest. They’ve changed the location of the event once, in 2010, from Aloha Stadium in Hawaii to Sun Life Stadium in Miami, where the Super Bowl that year was hosted. They’ve changed to timing of the game from after the Super Bowl to the week before. Still, the Pro Bowl has been so consistently terrible that the Commissioner himself, Roger Goodell has considered sacking it.

The Pro Bowl has been a source of embarrassment for the league for many years, largely because the players don’t put forth significant effort. It’s professional football watered down to look like twenty-two large men going through the motions, which is understandable when you consider that the participants are all coming off a long NFL season. They’re beaten up. Besides which, their number one priority is not to win the Pro Bowl, but to escape uninjured.

With the game being held a week before the Super Bowl, players from the league’s two best teams, the ones actually playing for the Championship, sit out the Pro Bowl. That’s a problem – one that waters the game down even further. Another is that a growing number of players, especially those from playoff teams, opt out of the game, blaming injuries that are not significant enough to have kept them from playing in a real game.

Interest in the Pro Bowl is not only waning in the eyes of the public – the event also means less to the players than it used to. It seems to become less important with each passing year. Still, it would be a crying shame to eliminate it. It’s football, after all. America loves football. The NFL should fix the Pro Bowl once and for all.

The very first change that should be made is to hold the game after the Super Bowl. The idea of holding it prior to the big game is relatively new. The current format originated in 2010. Super Bowl participants have been excluded from the Pro Bowl since. In 2013 that will mean that the retiring Ray Lewis will not be able to participate in the final Pro Bowl of his career. No player should be omitted simply because his team was successful. That’s the opposite of the idea behind an All Star game.

The NBA, NHL and Major League Baseball all take a break mid-season to hold their All Star events. That would not work in the NFL with its tight regular season schedule. The Pro Bowl must be held after the season is over. By shifting it back to its customary post-Super Bowl time slot, the league would allow full participation by championship players. It would also extend the NFL season for fans. More football is far better than less football. By holding the Pro Bowl a week before the Super Bowl the NFL has needlessly condensed the schedule.

The proper timing for the Pro Bowl is two weeks after the Super Bowl. The proper place for the Pro Bowl is Hawaii. That’s one aspect that does not need changing. The players and coaches enjoy going there and the scenery is pleasant for the viewers. Besides, the always-perfect weather factors into some of the other changes that should be made to the game.

The primary change that should be made to the Pro Bowl is that it should be much more than just a football game. It should culminate in a football game, but not an NFL style one. The actual football game associated with the Pro Bowl should be played in shorts and tee shirts. No helmets, no pads. It should be a flag football game played exclusively for the love of football.

One aspect of football that makes it different than the other major sports is that you can’t actually see the players under all their gear. A Pro Bowl flag football game would allow fans to see their favorite players’ faces, tattoos, rippling muscles, etc. We could get to know them a little better for the people they are underneath those masks. We could see them smiling and laughing and carrying on like fools. It would be must-see TV.

The flag football game would only be the final event of the ideal Pro Bowl. It would be held in the evening as a televised “late game”, but competition would begin in the morning and continue throughout the day. It would be similar to the NBA All Star weekend, but condensed into one day.

The entire day would be like a mini X-Games, with a variety of events for players to participate in such as a 9-hole golf tournament, a punt, pass and kick competition, quarterback skills contest, track and field events and, most importantly, an American Gladiators style obstacle course with players from the opposing conference jousting at them with various foam rubber implements and shooting them with tennis while they try to accomplish various feats.

The NFL could keep us glued to our sets all day and create a whole new television rights melee for the league to profit from. Any of the networks would be thrilled to pay big dollars for an entire Sundays worth of NFL themed programming. Despite Pro Bowl Sunday no longer including a “real” football game, the ratings would be off the charts.

Colin Daniels

Colin is the emcee of the South Stands Denver Fancast and maintains our Twitter and Facebook accounts.

Best of Westword 2013: Best Blog
Best of Westword 2011: Best Podcast
Subscribe to South Stands Denver Fancast on iTunes

South Stands Denver Fancast Playlist

SSDF Podcast

  • South Stands Denver Fancast, Show 207: Let's Get Out the Black Light
    A rare off night frees up the stars of 104.3 the Fan's Late Night show, Sean Drotar (@sdrotar) and Ryan…
  • South Stands Denver Fancast Show 206: Keepin' it Tight....
    Our good buddy, Denver Stiffs writer, Colorado Sports Guy and super stylish dude, Jeff Morton joins us for a great…
  • South Stands Denver Fancast, Show 205
    Mile High Sports superstar Brandon Spano (@BrandonSpano) joins us for some yelling and riveting Broncos talk. But before he arrives,…
  • South Stands Denver Fancast Show 204: Back sack strikes back
    The boys from the Sin Bin, Mile High Sports (and the only one of its kind in Denver) hockey show,…

SSDF on Facebook

SSDF Twitter Watch