The NFL will say goodbye to the traditional Pro Bowl format of pitting the best players of the two conferences against each other.
Instead, they will establish the Pro Bowl Games, a weeklong skills competition culminating in a flag football game.
The flag football game for the 2023 Pro Bowl Games will be held at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas on February 5.
Aside from that game, NFL players can showcase their football and non-football skills through various challenges.
Peyton Manning‘s Omaha Productions will help promote the events and formulate the week’s proceedings.
The five-time NFL MVP and Pro Football Hall of Famer shared his take on the featured flag football game.
The Sheriff is back for the 2023 Pro Bowl Games. 🔥 pic.twitter.com/cFW4wkmBb8
— NFL (@NFL) September 26, 2022
“Making Sunday’s game a flag football game is great to see. Youth football has been extremely important to me, and knowing NFL FLAG will help grow this sport. I hope boys can see themselves playing the same game as the best players in the world,” Manning said.
Opening Up The Game To More People
Replacing the typical full-contact game with flag football helps NFL players’ primary concern of getting hurt while playing in the Pro Bowl.
It also helps them become more visible to the fans as they compete without pads and helmets.
Likewise, the NFL has a huge interest in flag football.
They are bringing the sport to the World Games in July in partnership with the International Federation of Flag Football.
Both organizations are also targeting the sport’s inclusion in the 2028 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles.
The Pro Bowl was introduced in 1951 and was played in Los Angeles until 1971.
It moved to various cities from 1972 to 1979 before settling in Hawaii from 1980 to 2009.
After which, cities like Las Vegas, Phoenix, Orlando, and Miami have played host to the Pro Bowl.
Last year’s Pro Bowl pulled in an audience of 6.7 million viewers, its lowest since 2006.