When you think of the NFL Pro Bowl, the words joke, boring and who cares come to mind. There are plenty of reasons for this. But the main one is that players don’t put a lot of effort in for fear of getting injured in an exhibition game.
Another reason is all the rule changes make it near impossible for the defense. A couple of the more notable rule changes are a defense must run a 4-3 at all times and there is no blitzing. This leads to a more wide-open game and lots of scoring, which some say is a bad thing, but is just fine in my book.
By Joe Bond – @fantasysixpack
The last reason is that many of the players voted into the Pro Bowl don’t actually end turn up. Some miss out through injury, others because they play in the Super Bowl and most just refuse to play. Either way, fans/media say this makes the quality of the game poorer. Not that the numbers have been affected; 12.5million tuned in last year.
Even though ratings aren’t bad, the NFL has tried multiple things in an attempt to improve the ratings and quality of the Pro Bowl. Back in 2010 they moved it to Miami in a bid to increase attendance and ratings. That experiment failed and they quickly moved it back to Hawaii the next season.
The NFL made a significant play by moving the game to the week between the conference championship games and the Super Bowl. This has worked to some degree, since ratings have gone up and the Pro Bowl, despite what you think, is going nowhere.
Despite the good numbers, the NFL is not giving up on trying to improve the game. This year a change is coming that, as a fantasy football analyst, I’m excited about. The game will not be NFC vs AFC but instead the two teams will be drafted fantasy football style by hall of fame players Jerry Rice and Deion Sanders.
This will air on the NFL Network Tuesday and Wednesday night at 8PM EST. I’m not sure this is going to solve all the issues the Pro Bowl has but it will definitely bring some more excitement to the game.