A lot of people complain about the Pro Bowl being a ridiculous game and a waste of time. The game itself is an exercise of bad football. It's like flag football with the no-blitz rule and most of the game the linemen do absolutely nothing. They don't want to get hurt in an exhibition game, and understandably so.
What people need to remember is that it is an end of the season party for the league's best players. It is an exhibition game. The league doesn't try and dress it up into some game that matters (a la Major League Baseball). The skill players are allowed to run around the field and make plays.
Then in the fourth quarter, things change.
Why? The money.
The players on the winning squad get $50,00. The losers only get $25.000. Suddenly, the no-blitz rule gets into a gray area. The hitting begins -- all because of the money.
Leading up to the game is a party in Hawaii, with lots of hijinks. Mostly, it involves players trying to find out the room numbers of other players while hiding their own number. Those unfortunate enough to have their number revealed will always find thousands of dollars in surprise charges at the end of their stay, as other players will charge their expenses to the room number they acquire.
Even the NFL lightens up a bit. They will allow players to tweet during the game. There are in-game intervews. there are lots of points.
Probably the best thing the league did was move it to the week before the Super Bowl. Before, when it was afterward, no one watched the game. Now, we have a distraction from the long wait of two weeks before the big game.
Is it the best football there is? Certainly not. But it is exactly what it should be -- an exhibition with our favorite players. What else should it be?