We remember two Pro Bowls ago how Rodgers ripped his fellow players for their lack of effort in the season-ending all-star game. Since then, even Commissioner Roger Goodell has sounded off on how lame the game has become and issued a warning prior to last year’s game that if there wasn’t any pickup in the level of play that he would cancel it altogether.
Well, things did improve last year, but many still felt it wasn’t enough. It was enough for Goodell not to pull the plug, but it wasn’t good enough to stop the discussion. In fact, league officials have been discussing it at the league meetings being held in Phoenix this week.
According to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, a suggestion has been to let the players choose sides. Ok, so that’s an interesting concept, but one that I feel just doesn’t go far enough in picking up the interest of the game. Though television ratings have been stable, if the NFL really wants to make it interesting, they’ve got to put some teeth into it.
While watching players stand around choosing sides might be about as interesting as deciding who’s up first in a baseball game or tossing the coin at the start of a football game, I say let’s make this all-star game similar to that of Major League Baseball – make it important.
We need to keep the AFC vs. NFC format and we need to make it so that the winner of the game will host the following season’s Super Bowl. In other words, if the NFC wins the Pro Bowl and the Super Bowl matchup the following season is the Green Bay Packers vs. the Miami Dolphins, then the game would be played at Lambeau Field in Green Bay. How’s that for incentive?
I know the idea would go over like the proverbial lead balloon, but something has got to be done to make the game a viable event – otherwise the league should follow through on Goodell’s threat and simply shut it down.
What do you think?