The Pro Bowl is the NFL’s version of the All Star game. The best of the best head down to Honolulu to compete against each other in an interconference matchup. However, over the last couple years, there has been much debate over the worth of the Pro Bowl. Many have argued that the Pro Bowl is no longer taken seriously and has lost its entertainment value. A few years back, the NFL tried to fix this by moving the Pro Bowl from the week after the Super Bowl to the week before the Super Bowl. This did not help its case at all. Now the Pro Bowl is on the verge of extinction, since there have been serious thoughts as to eliminating the Pro Bowl all together. The question is: is this a good idea?
Why It Should Stay
The Pro Bowl is the only time where all of the greatest players in the NFL get to compete against each other. In theory, it should be the best quality football game you will get to see. It is an honor for the players to be selected, and they should be awarded by getting to go to Hawaii to play football. The NFL would be the only sport without an All Star game if it were eliminated. The Pro Bowl also generates a decent amount of revenue for the NFL as well (not that it needs more money).
Why It Should Go
The Pro Bowl has lost value because the players do not take it seriously. Other than a little extra cash, there really is no reward for winning the Pro Bowl. Since it is after the season, many players have already shifted into offseason mode. Plus, the fact that it is in Hawaii makes it more of a vacation than an actual game. Players and coaches have very little time to practice and game plan, usually resulting in really sloppy plays. The players that are on the Super Bowl teams do not go to the Pro Bowl, and typically these teams have several Pro Bowlers. Lastly, the Pro Bowl is not even a legitimate football game; the rules are different from the regular NFL games, such as no blitzing.
I am definitely against the current version of the Pro Bowl. However, I am hesitant to get rid of it completely, because I think there needs to be some version of an All Star game to honor the players. I think what needs to happen is a change in the current format. One possible idea is to eliminate a preseason game and stick the Pro Bowl in the middle of the season. Essentially, it would be an extra bye week for non-Pro Bowlers and would give the players and coaches a week to practice and get ready. The rules would need to be the same as a regular NFL game as well. You could even add an incentive for the winning team, such as home field advantage in the Super Bowl, to ensure that the game is competitive. That is just one possible idea, there are several other options out there.
So what do you guys think about the current Pro Bowl? Let me know in the comments below. Please like the post if you enjoyed reading it, share it with your friends, and follow my blog if you have an account.