It’s the morning after the Pro Bowl and while I’ve got guests, there’s part of me tempted to blow out the show and just talk Pro Bowl for three straight hours. Incredible game. A true nail biter. “An instant classic.” Not my words, that of the NFL’s official twitter account. And it really was.
I’ll be honest. When I saw Harrison Smith’s pick-six that made it 17-3 in the first half, I thought it was all over.
Incredible convoy of blockers there. The NFC added three more points to take a 20-3 lead into the locker room and I knew it was all over. As good as the AFC is, there’s no way they could come back on a hungry NFC team like that, right? Wrong. Because they did just that. Final score: AFC 24, NFC 23.
And as always, when you have a lead like that, you have to ask the question: did the AFC win that or did the NFC lose it? And the answer is both. The AFC played their hearts out to come back into that game and steal it and the NFC lost. You cannot underestimate the heart of the American Football Conference when it comes to games like this. I’ve always said, if you get a collection of assorted players from the AFC on the same team, you better finish them when you have the chance, because they are a collection of zombies. They have so much heart, you’re going to have to rip it out of them if you want to win.
And that was never on more display than on Derek Carr’s touchdown pass to – AHHH, I can’t keep this up. Who am I kidding? That wasn’t a good game. It never is. And this is the longest that I’ve ever been able to keep a straight face about it. It was a terrible game.
I mean, seriously, did you see Harrison Smith’s interception return?
It was a guy running down the field while everyone else tried to run out of his way. The biggest hit of the game was when one Drew Brees’s sons started scuffling with each other.
And I get it. Don’t get me wrong. I completely get it. While the winners get an extra 32 grand, there is no amount of money that’s worth getting injured in a meaningless game in Orlando. And the risk of getting injured is too great.
Jason Witten gave everyone a positive review: “guys wanted to put on a good show and really get this Pro Bowl up to the standard that we wanted it to be at.”
And if you’re looking for me to crack him for that, you’re wrong. Because he’s right. That game really was at the standard of the Pro Bowl. It’s just a terrible standard.
But it is the standard. Because it’s the same thing as it always is with the Pro Bowl – you can’t play a real game of football at the Pro Bowl because it’s not a real game. And it shouldn’t be. And it can’t be. And all the tweaks in the world aren’t going to change that. There is only one way to play football – full speed. And anything that’s not full-speed is not football.
There’s nothing you can do to make the Pro Bowl good and they clearly aren’t going to get rid of the Pro Bowl, so here we are. Here we bleeping are.