The Pro Bowl has a bad rap as the NFL's version of an all-star game has become nothing more than a somewhat faster walkthrough. It has gotten so bad lately, in fact, that NFL executives, including commissioner Roger Goodell have toyed with the idea of axing the whole thing. Why should they float the money to put together a product that nobody cares about or watches. You can't blame them for the thought. You also can't blame the players for not wanting to sell out and risk injury for a game that doesn't matter either.
However, things may be different this season as Peyton Manning and Champ Bailey have challenged their peers to step it up a notch in the Pro Bowl in hopes of saving the game in the future. We'll see how that goes. There are a few Bengals for you to keep your eyes on. Both Geno Atkins and A.J. Green made the first team and Jermaine Gresham and Andrew Whitworth made it to the game as alternates.
If you plan on watching on Sunday, here's all you need to know:
Location: Aloha Stadium; Honolulu, Hawaii
Date/Time: Sunday, Jan. 27, 2013; 7 p.m. EST
TV Schedule: NBC
Odds: NFC by 2½, per Odds Shark
Interesting Facts: Last year's Pro Bowl teams combined for more than 100 points as the AFC won by a score 59-41, and both the AFC and the NFC have won the league's all-star game a total of 21 times. The last time one conference won back-to-back Pro Bowls was when the NFC won in 2008 and '09. The last time the AFC won more than one Pro Bowl in a row was when it won in 2001, '02 and '03. This is only the second Pro Bowl played the weekend before the Super bowl.