NFL Draft ready to begin, but the Pro Bowl looks finished
The news broke on ESPN's "Mike & Mike in the Morning", where Chris Mortenson said the game might not even be played this coming season. The NFL responded by saying that no decision had been made -- but it speaks volumes that ten months out, the league has not even chosen a venue.
"The league is moving toward suspending the Pro Bowl, possibly this year," Mortenson said on the draft day installment of "Mike & Mike". "As one person told me last night, it is DOA -- dead on arrival."
"At the same time, the league will, I believe, instruct teams to continue to put Pro Bowl incentives in contracts," Mort continued. "If players have Pro Bowl incentives, to go ahead and pay them so they don't have a problem with the union in going with this action."
"The Pro Bowl is on life support, at best," Mortenson concluded.
This is surprising. While last year's Pro Bowl was particularly unwatchable, the game was still the most-watched sports event on television that weekend.
And notice the speed with which Roger Goodell is implementing the decision. Baseball commisioner Bud Selig would have had this decision delayed for years by a specially appointed commission.
"Right now the Pro Bowl is on the calendar for the week before the Super Bowl," Mortenson said. "But there's no game site that is listed."
Of tonight's draft picks, Mortenson said, "There may be many Pro Bowl caliber players in this draft who never get to play in a Pro Bowl."
The Pro Bowl was not likely to be held in Hawaii this year anyway. But now it looks like the whole event may be leid to rest.