2011 Pro Bowl: Joke Or No Joke, Game Is Not Going Away

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Pro Bowl Might Be A Joke, But It Is Here To Stay

Over at SB Nation’s Atlanta Falcons website, The Falcoholic, they are debating whether or not the Pro Bowl is a joke. Well, the answer is obvious. Of course it is.

SB Nation Chicago has raised the question ‘Will 2011 Be The Year The Pro Bowl Dies?’ The answer to that is equally obvious. Of course it won’t.

The NFL will never kill the Pro Bowl. Who would kill a week-long vacation to Hawaii if they don’t have to? You wouldn’t. I wouldn’t. The NFL won’t.

Face facts. The Pro Bowl is a week-long vacation for players, coaches, NFL representatives, reporters, TV types and anyone else connected with the game who makes the trip to Honolulu. That’s all. And nobody intentionally passes on vacations to Hawaii.

The players are thrilled that the game is back in Hawaii after a year in South Florida. You think they will let the league wipe out the game as part of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement? I don’t.

Sure, having it the week before the Super Bowl is a pretty stupid idea. It means that the players who deserve it most, those who got their teams to the championship game, don’t get to enjoy the vacation.

Sure, it’s a foolish, meaningless game in which players try not to hit each other and fans hold their collective breath and hope no one from their team suffers any sort of catastrophic injury.

Sure, the NHL has sort of a cool idea with its ‘choose up sides’ idea rather players just representing conferences.

The only thing players are serious about this week is enjoying the sun in Hawaii. And that is why, joke or no joke, this game will go on.

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2011 Pro Bowl By The Numbers

Here are a few interesting facts and figures about this Sunday’s 2011 NFL Pro Bowl (6:30 p.m. ET, FOX).

— Tony Gonzalez of Atlanta, representing the NFC at tight end, can become the all-time leader in Pro Bowl touchdowns if he gets one Sunday. He is currently tied with Marvin Harrison and Jimmy Smith with five touchdowns.

— If Adrian Peterson of Minnesota, representing the NFC, gets a rushing touchdown he will become the Pro Bowl’s all-time leader in that category. Peterson currently has three rushing touchdowns in Pro Bowls, tied with Earl Campbell, Chuck Muncie and Mike Alstott.

— Ten players from the University of Miami will be in the game. They are S Ed Reed, S Brandon Meriweather, LB Ray Lewis, DT Vince Wilfork, WR Andre Johnson, WR Reggie Wayne, KR Devin Hester, LB Jonathan Vilma, S Antrel Rolle, LB Jon Beason.

— The University of Tennessee has the second-most players, six. They are QB Peyton Manning, RB Arian Foster, LB Jerod Mayo, TE Jason Witten, T Chad Clifton, S Eric Berry

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