Kevin Hench – MSN Fox Sports – Jan 29, 2010:

The weakest, lamest, least compelling of all All-Star games, the Pro Bowl has long been a pimple carefully hidden on the NFL’s posterior (after the season, off the mainland).

Though they won’t be playing, the 14 Pro Bowlers on the Super Bowl teams will be required to be in the stadium the night of the game or forfeit their Pro Bowl checks. Yep, the league has to bribe its own players to watch this game.

Between injuries, indifference and prep for SB XLIV, less than two-thirds of the originally named Pro Bowlers will play in the game.

Tom Brady, Philip Rivers and Brett Favre have joined Peyton Manning and Drew Brees on the unavailable-to-participate-in-pointless-spectacle list. If one more QB had balked, the next invite was going to be Keanu Reeves.

Just when you thought exhibition tackle football couldn’t get any less meaningful, David Garrard — fresh off a 15-TD, 10-INT season — is a Pro Bowler. That’s right, the No. 1 criterion for a quarterback to make the Pro Bowl is no longer QB rating, TDs or total yards. It’s willingness to participate.

Is it time for the NFL’s Pro-Bowl to die?

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  1. jim says:

    Next to sheep herding American football has to be the most daunting thing to watch on TV. Start stop, start stop, start ,stop commercial start,stop, start ,stop. Watching paint dry would be a lot more entertaining. And, whats with all that safety gear.

  2. SN says:

    1. “Start stop, start stop, start ,stop commercial start,stop, start ,stop

    Football is the only sport I watch and yet I agree with you 100%. I didn’t really get into football until I got a DVR. I have my Media Center PC set to skip 28 seconds. Once the play ends, I skip to the next play, etc., etc., etc.

    To actually sit for three hours and watch an entire game from start to finish would be torture. (And not to mention the inane chatter!)

    And let me make this clear, I like football!

  3. Dallas says:

    I say turn the pro bowl into Mud Bowl flag football. Shirts versus Skins.

  4. CT Raider says:

    Just sounds like complaints that are specific to this years Pro Bowl. Instead of making this about canceling the game it should have been about why it needs to be moved back to where it was.

  5. Greg Allen says:

    I’m a pretty big football fan and I never watch it.

    It’s partly about timing and the meaningless nature of it.

    I’m more likely to watch a pre-season exhibition game and I think it’s kinda cool if they play overseas – it would be best if they played in more unusual places than England.

    It be super cool if they played up in some Andes villiage or in the heart of China — and treat it more like a reality TV show.

  6. Faxon says:

    Hold it in Haiti this year.

  7. sargasso says:

    Professional sport, is an oxymoron.

  8. SN says:

    4. “Instead of making this about canceling the game it should have been about why it needs to be moved back to where it was.

    But the reason they moved it is in hopes of boosting the ratings by taking advantage of the pre-super bowl hype. No one watched it when it was on after the super bowl. So moving it back won’t help anything.

    The main problem with the pro-bowl is that the players are worried about getting injured and ruining their careers on a game that has no meaning. So the best players don’t play, and the ones that do don’t give it their all. So the game sucks.

    It’s time to put an end to it and turn it into an award worth winning, not a third rate sporting event no one watches. Put it this way, when actors win their Oscar, they don’t force them to make a movie out of it. When an actor wins a Tony, they’re not expected to perform in a play about it. And when a musican wins a Grammy, he’s not expeted to write a song about it.

    Being awarded the recognition of being a pro-bowler should not be any different. Give them their awards and that’s it.

  9. chris says:

    They should give the players 1M dollars each to the winning team.

    I was in Hawaii a few years ago during Pro Bowl week. It looked like an enormous party. Good times.

    Who cares if they don’t hit as hard? Football generates enough horrific injuries during the season.

  10. Olo Baggins of Bywater says:

    SN and chris, I think you’re on the right track. The NFL is so brutal that many players cannot play another game when the season is over. The big stars never play much anyway, the ones that show up. Why risk an entire career on a show?

    Future: the NFL is seriously considering adding two regular season games and eliminating two pre-season. IMO this is asinine, and will definitely render the Pro-Bowl worthless…nobody will be left standing after all those games plus playoffs.

  11. McCullough says:

    In the grand scheme of things I would rate this story as not the least bit important.

  12. hhopper says:

    By moving it to a spot before the Super Bowl, they just made a useless game much more useless.

  13. ArianeB says:

    All All-Star games are worthless. At least football honors their all-stars at the end of the season rather than in the middle.

    NHL will not have an all-star game this year so that players can play in the Olympics = free advertising for NHL hockey. Wish MLB would do the same.

  14. Bat21 says:

    More people would watch if Keanu played.

  15. MikeN says:

    Easy, they moved it out of Hawaii, and moved the date, so of course people aren’t interested in going.

  16. csmoith says:

    If is not in Hawaii. the o-line is going to be pissed.

  17. Thomas says:

    Sports are interesting when there is drama and that only occurs when there is real consequence on the outcome of the game. It is why the preseason sucks (although it is still better than any other sport at the time it is shown), why the pro bowl sucks and why the BCS sucks. At least with the preseason there is a bit of storyline in the players that are trying to make the team. I’m a big football fan (remember, there are only two seasons: football season and waiting for football season) but even I can’t watch the pro-bowl because it is completely meaningless.

  18. Thomas says:

    You do realize that a professional is simply a person that is paid to do work? A sport that pays people to play is a professional sport. Would you like to try again for double the prizes?

  19. Thomas says:

    It is possible to watch a game w/o a DVR (although better with one). When a commercial hits, I hit mute and get another beer. I definitely agree that the announcers in most games are painful. I’ve watched quite a few games on mute. Back in the day, before they put heinous delays in, it was possible to listen to the simulcast on radio. Those were good times…

  20. CTRaider says:

    I thought the reason it was moved from Hawaii was because they couldn’t come to terms on a contract. Guess not. Of course it’s about ratings. Which are gonna drop since more players than ever have ditched it.

  21. deowll says:

    These guys play for the money and taking any sort of risk of getting hurt when they aren’t getting paid seriously upsets the people they have contracts with.

  22. The0ne says:

    I like DU blogging as well but I think it’s crazy for people to come here and blog. These people must be morons, buffoons, cretins, jerks, dumb-asses, and the like for always coming in here to voice their pointless opinions.

    And remember, I like DU and blogging! Go Figure…

  23. The0ne sad says:

    Oh Forgot To Mention I’m Gay!

  24. Play it without helmets and pads and maybe I’d watch.

  25. Mr. Fusion says:

    Is there any All Star game in any sport where they go all out?

    Most All Star games are so the fans can see the league’s best together. Fantasies fulfilled, to a degree.


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