Posted January 26, 2014

NFLPA president: Roger Goodell was close to canceling Pro Bowl

NFL
Roger Goodell (Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)

Roger Goodell has been looking for ways to spice up the Pro Bowl. (Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)

The Pro Bowl is Sunday night, but commissioner Roger Goodell was considering doing away with the game, according NFL Players Association president Domonique Foxworth.

“Roger was very serious about potentially canceling the Pro Bowl, because apparently it’s very expensive and isn’t of a ton of value to them,” Foxworth told USA Today this week.

“To be honest with you, I was completely comfortable with eliminating it until I talked to the players, and they said they loved it and they want to be there.”

SI WIRE: Mike Adams will walk home from Super Bowl if Broncos win

Foxworth, whose term ends in March, was the person who pitched the player draft, two-minute drills to end each quarter and legalizing zone coverage for the game, according to USA Today.

He acknowledged his biggest fear is a player injuring his own teammate.

“That’s the only legitimate concern, and I completely understand it,” Foxworth said. “I was faced with the possibility of canceling the game or trying to make it interesting. If some of these conflicts that we create make it so we can’t go forward, then we’ll throw the game out.”

SI WIRE: Broncos RB Knowshon Moreno expects to play in Super Bowl


73 comments
FifthInTheOrder
FifthInTheOrder

I was very serious about potentially not reading this article, because apparently it’s very uninteresting and isn’t of a ton of value to me.

To be honest with you, I was completely comfortable with not reading it until I talked to the wife, and she said she loved it and she wanted me to read it.

BarrySoetoro
BarrySoetoro

Should have cancelled the Super Bowl and held it in a city with a dome and some entertainment for the visitors instead of a NJ swamp.

John32070
John32070

I didn't know what to expect about the "draft" thing this year, but it was the best game in years. I don't get why people get so down on this game but yet the other all star games get hyped up and such. Back in the 70's and 80's players tried and aside from Dan Marino no one faked injuries or just blew it off (like Brady does). After the debacle  two years ago I almost agreed the game should be done away with, but after last night there might be hope.

UleNotknow
UleNotknow

"Goodall was close to canceling... " Not surprising since Goodall's a well known fool full of bad decisions.

StephenRohrbeck
StephenRohrbeck

Historically, the players looked at this as a paid vacation for a week with their families in Hawaii. Back in the 60's and 70's when they didn't make millions it was a big deal. There has never been a time when the players weren't trying to avoid injury in this game. The only reason the players want to keep it is the paid vacation, and I don't blame them, Hawaii is gorgeous. Michael Ramsey-The skills competition was eliminated because during the sand flag football game in the mid nineties (I think) a rookie DB with the Pats blew out his knee and it ended his career. 

rskins09
rskins09

Should have cancelled it  20 years .. Nothing to it anymore --- a glorified   flag football game  where they play NOT to get injured ...Don't blame  the players one bit ...   It cost way to much for airfare and hotels in Hawaii..   And if your  flying from the east coast , one would feel (the time)  like  you flew to Japan on a prop ... I wouldn't go if it was free ......

mystafugee
mystafugee

How about this, just have your awards show at the end of the season in Hawaii and just name your All-Pro team at that time.  

raindog308
raindog308

They should make it like the baseball all-star game: play it around week 8, make it meaningful for the playoffs (some sort of home field impact), and perhaps schedule half the league to have bye weeks before and half after.  

Maybe the conference that wins (or the one that loses) gets to/has to have another wild card round.  Or the conference that loses has to play all playoff games a neutral site.  Or something...otherwise, scrap it if it's meaningless.

MichaelRamsey
MichaelRamsey

I miss the skill competitions they use to do the week leading up to the pro bowl those were fun.

KeysSteven
KeysSteven

Ever since NFL began monkeying with Pro Bowl’s timing (sandwiched between playoffs & Super Bowl), then NFLPA dumbed it down (ditched Conference rivalry & added fantasy draft (‘14)), its image has taken a beating.


Add to those changes the fact that Super Bowl has taken on such enormous significance with the League and the Pro Bowl is now just so much anti-climax.


Though the game still rings registers and players dig the trip, it’s new, bad flavor may actually be working a drag on the momentum, the excitement that builds leading up to the big game.  Bad play all around on this one, fellas. 

Listening
Listening

I'm watching the Pro Bowl right now and it's the best one I've seen in a decade.  Real rushing and hitting.  Great job fixing this game.

championbc
championbc

 They could keep the trip to Hawaii, but let them play flag football instead, or even touch.  Everybody would get a kick out of it, and they could even do it in Hawaiian shirts and shorts if they wanted.  

CobyPreimesberger
CobyPreimesberger

again even though they've made it at least better for the defense, where it looks like they might have a real nfl score it's still rather worthless

JeffBunnell
JeffBunnell

Who cares if people watch?   A trip to Hawail and an "All Star scrimmage' is a reward to the PLAYERS (and their families) for sacrificing their bodies over the course of the season.


pickle
pickle

Wish he had cancelled it, the pro bowl is such a joke. They should still have a vote for the best players, and I have no problem with those players getting to go on a party vacation in Hawaii. But the actual pro bowl game itself is just embarassing.

TeamCropDusters
TeamCropDusters

I love football, played it myself in high school.  That being said, my kid ain't playing.  I will still watch some other schmucks kid get beat to hell, but it won't be mine.

TeamCropDusters
TeamCropDusters

FYI.. this is what the NFL will look like in 10 years...

TeamCropDusters
TeamCropDusters

I am changing the channel now. I can't encourage this... why not play two-below? What a facking farce.

TeamCropDusters
TeamCropDusters

This game is facking ridiculous... why play the game, if the players don't even try. Wrapping up the QB is a sack... are you facking kidding me.

hulmeshaun
hulmeshaun

NEFan, The pro bowl is the week before the super bowl.

NEFan
NEFan

There is no sport that has a less meaningful "All-star" game than football.  It is after the climax of the super bowl.  Many fans have moved on to other sports, and there is the risk of getting injured for a meaningless game.  Baseball revived their game by making it significant! I don't know how football could do the same.  Injuries are a genuine concern.  Further, the league has already dragged the season into February!

matthewjthibeault
matthewjthibeault

I can see how the players use it as a respect level thing, but for the fans, we couldn't care less.

KristianColasacco
KristianColasacco

It's still not interesting.  Should have just ditched it. 

mkmck69
mkmck69

@StephenRohrbeck That was Robert Edwards who blew out his knee, and he was a running back.  He was a 1100 yard rusher in his rookie season...who knows how good he could have been?

UleNotknow
UleNotknow

@rskins09  It was a great game. Did you even watch it or do you spout nonsense just out of habit?

mkmck69
mkmck69

@raindog308 God NO...DO NOT have a freaking exhibition game mean something towards the regular season or playoffs. Goodell thinks up enough bad sh*t on his own...let's not have him adopting Bud Selig's nonsense too.

mystafugee
mystafugee

@raindog308 yeah and if say Earl Thomas got injured, I'm sure the Seahawks would have no problem.  

UleNotknow
UleNotknow

@JeffBunnell  Not to mention $56K to each of the winning team and $27K to each of the losing team.

Sportsredo
Sportsredo

@JeffBunnell Back in the 60's a trip to Hawaii was worth playing in the game. Now the stars can buy whatever they want, wherever they want. NFL players go to nicer places for longer periods of time. That incentive died long ago. 

UleNotknow
UleNotknow

@pickle  You obviously didn't watch it, but you still spout drivel. Why is that not surprising?

swededawg52
swededawg52

@TeamCropDusters So, you love football, played it but will prevent your kid from  having the same positive experience.  What brand of parent helicopter do you hover in?

MrArlington
MrArlington

@hulmeshaunIt's a recent change and since no one watches the game anyways you can't blame a guy for not noticing.

UleNotknow
UleNotknow

@NEFan The Pro Bowl was last night - a week before the Super Bowl. Next...

MrArlington
MrArlington

@NEFanScrap the game altogether or find a way to incentive the players to make the game fun to watch.

KeysSteven
KeysSteven

@UleNotknow @rskins09 Does it read like they watched it?


If you enjoyed it, you enjoyed it, nothing wrong with that.  Not like it's gonna start a trend (Oh brother).  The new, fantasized Pro Bowl is sooo bad now it almost makes me feel embarrassed to be an adult sport fan.  It was marginal before, now there's no real allegiance (NFC / AFC), no real team, no rivalry and way too much hero worship.


Players may mean well but their egos are blotting out the sun on this one.   

TeamCropDusters
TeamCropDusters

He can play Baseball, Basketball, Lacrosse, hell even hockey...  Football is bad business for the body.  Way worse on it's participants than any sport.

MattBugaj
MattBugaj

@giwan1259 @NEFan ...because the players could play hard, but don't. It's like if pitchers just lobbed 80MPH fastballs in the whole baseball All-Star game. At least in football, they have to watch themselves that they don't injure themselves over something that doesn't matter. There's really no excuse for dogging it at the NBA game.

TeamCropDusters
TeamCropDusters

Why watch my kid get the ishit beat out him, when I can just watch yours?