2010 Pro Bowl: A Super Distraction

First of all, I would like to extend an apology to all of the readers for the absence of posts the last few weeks.  For some odd reason, the original NBR site decided to stop functioning, thereby destroying all of our previous posts and podcasts.  Annoying for you, extremely frustrating for us!  Anyways, the three of us will try to make this blog avenue just as functional and lively as the last one.

Now onto the fun stuff…the stupidity of the NFL.

For those of you who didn’t know (or care…don’t blame you), the 2010 Pro Bowl will be played, for the first time, BEFORE the Super Bowl.  Why?  Well why don’t we ask the league Commish, Roger Goodell!

Goodell says it’s an effort to create more excitement amongst football fans.  He believes inserting the game into the “Super Bowl Week” festivities will only add to the buzz surrounding both the Pro Bowl and the Big Game.

Critics say it’s yet another league ploy to generate more revenue or perhaps another example of modern sports administrators’ inability to leave long-time rules in place.  We already know sports is all about the money, but let’s explore this second point for a moment.  It seems as if every year, one or two of America’s professional sports leagues undergo drastic changes.  Sure, some of it is understandable, perhaps the changes serve as signs of the progressive times, like instant replay.  But in many circumstances, why can’t we just leave things as is?

To me, the idea of the Pro Bowl preceding the Super Bowl is outrageous.  There isn’t one good thing about it…not even the supposed “increase in excitement” that Roger Goodell cites.  Why?  Well, because the Pro Bowl isn’t exciting in the first place.  Look, if it doesn’t mean anything to the players, then why should it mean something to the fans?  I’m sorry I can’t get interested in a game that most NFL superstars try to avoid playing in.  I think I read somewhere that after all of the injuries, excuses, and Super Bowl-related issues come to light, this year’s Pro Bowl will see about 2/3 of its original choices need alternates to step in.  I mean, frickin’ David Garrard is going to be one of the AFC’s three quarterbacks!  Look at his stats…tell me if those will make you anticipate the game any more.

Oh yeah, and how about the players from the Super Bowl teams?  The NFL is requiring them to at least pay a visit to Miami during the game…just days before possibly the biggest game of their lives.  It was announced a few days ago that the Colts players elected to this year’s Pro Bowl will leave the game at halftime to go back to Indianapolis.  In other words, the NFL is making them fly down to Miami and back just to make an appearance, not even play.  I’m sure the Saints and Colts players have better things to do, like maybe…PREPARE FOR THE SUPER BOWL!

I hope the league understands that by holding the Pro Bowl on Sunday, it’s missing out on having the league’s real superstars participate.  After all, these are the guys that were good enough to make it to the promised land…the Super Bowl.  Don’t you think having the Super Bowl-caliber players on the field during the Pro Bowl would increase the excitement?  Goodell doesn’t.  As a matter of fact, what I gather from his comments is that he believes the current plan (involving zero SB players) will increase the excitement.  Make sense?  Didn’t think so.

The bottom line is that the Pro Bowl has never taken priority over the Super Bowl, so why make such a drastic push now?  The trip away from Indy or New Orleans is a distraction for the players.  Big or small…it’s a distraction.  So why jeopardize the quality of the Super Bowl by placing priority on the most meaningless American football game, the Pro Bowl?

As Colts receiver Reggie Wayne put it, the league is essentially making him go down to Miami to give a “pep talk” to the AFC team before he turns around and gets right back onto a plane.  I’ll tell you this much…Roger Goodell better hope Reggie gives one hell of a pep talk.  Otherwise that hike in excitement he was hoping for will end up being one “Super” disappointment.


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