The reason the Pro Bowl is unwatchable is two fold. One, the game does not matter. No one cares that Tom Brady scores 50 touchdowns in a quarter in a game where no one is really trying. Nothing is gained by playing this game except a couple extra dollars in a paycheck to the players. Two, it is a popularity contest that no one but "super fans" care about. Case in point, I am willing to bet that Ray Lewis still gets over 50% of the linebacker votes in this years Pro Bowl. The guys that have recognizable names get to the game.
According to Albert Breer of NFL Network (thanks to profootballtalk) the league is considering adding elements that would make the game more like a game show.
Breer said "make it so every single minute of the game has some sort of thing that’s going to keep fans interested and engaged."
Breer added that the NFL doesn’t "feel the need to keep the integrity of what a normal football game is."
As a child of the MTV generation I instantly had flashbacks to the wonderfully entertaining Rock n Jock sports series. If the NFL needs to make the game more engaging to the fans then they simply need to take a page from the MTV playbook and mix the players with some celebrities. Link to rock-n-jock for the younger readers.
Tell me, what would you rather see?
- Peyton Manning playing the game a little too seriously and throwing all over corners who don't really care.
- Elvis Dumervil outplaying Kirstie Alley to sack celebrity QB Shannon Elizabeth being announced by Ken Ober and each respective team being coached by Dan Cortese or Bill Bellamy.
This is entertainment gold, people.
In all seriousness the Pro Bowl is a joke and the fact the NFL needs to make it more watchable is insulting to the fans. Not feeling the need to keep the integrity means they are willing to do anything necessary to sell this to the fans. It is a page out of the MTV playbook.
If the NFL wants to make an event out of it then they should implement a more inclusive skills competition. Bring out a veterans combine of sorts. Is anyone else curious how many times James Harrison could bench press 225lbs? How about QB's hitting moving deep targets? This seems much more interesting to me.
I can see it now, "Tune in to the NFL network Friday's at 9 to watch the first installment of real housewives of the Cincinnati Bengals."...