It’s Super Bowl Sunday. Two of the greatest teams in the league are ready to face off and what is Roger Goodell talking about? How players played in the pro bowl???
During a conversation with ESPN Radio yesterday Goodell made these comments about the Pro Bowl
â€œI really didnâ€™t think that was the kind of football that we want demonstrating to our fans,â€ Goodell said. â€œThe fans were actively booing in the stands. They didnâ€™t like what they were seeing.â€
For the last couple of years it’s become obvious that Goodell really wants the Pro Bowl to turn a profit. Since 1980 the Pro Bowl was held in Honolulu at the Aloha Stadium on the week after the Super Bowl. For 30 years it was basically a paid vacation for the best players in the league. In a quest to line the NFL coffers even more, the league (Goodell) has decided to tinker with the game. The first change was to move the game to the week between the conference championships and the Super Bowl, this means that many of the best players, those on the Super Bowl teams, won’t participate. The other move was to play the game in Miami who was hosting the 2010 Super Bowl. Moving the game must not have panned out because in 2011 it was back in Hawaii.
The bottom line here is nobody cares. No serious fan even wants to watch the Pro Bowl. It’s at the end of a 6 month season where anyone who is a big fan has likely watched hundreds if not thousands of hours of football. By this time everyone is looking forward to getting acquainted with their wives and children again.
Goodell’s mantra has been player safety for the last couple years. He’s handed down fines liberally and changed the rules to protect players. Now he is making threats to try and increase the competitiveness of a game that is absolutely meaningless, increasing the chances of a player getting injured.
The league can’t get rid of the game, it would just be wrong. The big thing about the Pro Bowl isn’t the game itself, it’s getting selected. If you eliminate that are you going to go to some other ‘all star’ program? Are we going to lose the prestige of having a player that’s been to the Pro Bowl multiple times? Is that recognition going to go away? The NFL makes good money, and its below average credit score I’m sure the ticket prices for the 50,000 people that actually watch the Pro Bowl more than offsets the cost of flying the players out and having the game. These guys give their whole lives to the sport, just let them have a weekend in Hawaii where they don’t get hurt and stop making so much noise about it. Stop trying to squeeze an extra nickel out of every event the NFL has, it’s petty and makes the league seem greedy. And most of all, stop expecting any of us to watch more meaningless games.