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Why the Pro Bowl should switch to a flag football tournament - FlagSpin

Why the Pro Bowl should switch to a flag football tournament

Players on the field at the Pro Bowl

The Pro Bowl is notoriously one of the most boring sporting events of the calendar year, and the NFL has explored a number of ways to make it more interesting. Here’s an idea — flag football.

If you watched the 2022 Pro Bowl on on Sunday, you know there was almost no contact. Players wore full pads, but there were times when they didn’t lay a finger on one another. The offensive and defensive lines were essentially pointless. All of that makes sense, as the last thing anyone wants is a player getting hurt in a meaningless game. So why not just change the game entirely?

The biggest issue with the Pro Bowl is that everything looks like a regular NFL game until the ball is snapped. The formations are the same and the players are dressed the same. But there is barely any effort when the ball is snapped. As J.J. Watt described it, there are practice walk-throughs that look more intense.

Here’s a sampling of how the game looked:

Since the Pro Bowl is about as physical as a flag football game, why not just play flag football? In fact, why not hold a 7-on-7 flag football tournament? That is probably something that would interest fans way more than fully padded players who don’t want to hit. Again, we understand why. No one should get hurt because of a tackle in the Pro Bowl. That’s why an entirely different game might deliver more intrigue.

Even ESPN’s Louis Riddick seemed surprised by the lack of effort at one point, as he noted that he doesn’t remember players shying away from contact quite as blatantly as they did this year.

There are 88 players in the Pro Bowl. The NFL could have something like a 7-on-7 flag football tournament with several teams. It may sound lame, but there’s nothing lamer than players in full pads for a non-contact sport. The skills competition is more entertaining than the actual Pro Bowl. A mini-tournament with no pads would probably draw more interest.

Photo: Feb 6, 2022; Paradise, Nevada, USA; The NFC and AFC line up at the line of scrimmage during the first quarter during the Pro Bowl football game at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

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Travis Burnett

Travis Burnett

A pioneer in the flag football community, Travis helped co-found the Flag Football World Championship Tour, FlagSpin and USA Flag. Featuring 15+ years of content creation for the sport of flag football, creating and managing the largest flag football tournaments on the planet, coaching experience at the youth and adult level as well as an active player with National and World Championship level experience.

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