The NFL Pro Bowl isn't what it used to be.
I know that sentence sounds like I'm a get-off-my-lawn old timer, but it's true. The Pro Bowl roster usually ends up with 2nd, 3rd or 4th alternates because of player injury or more often than not, player disinterest. Plus now with the game falling between the Conference Championship games and the Super Bowl, there's usually a whole slew of players that have better things to do than prepare for a meaningless all star game.
But even though the Pro Bowl game is often ridiculed by fans, the game isn't going anywhere. Even though ratings are down, enough fans tune in to make it worthwhile for the NFL to continue to hold the contest.
The next Pro Bowl will take place on January 29, 2017 from Orlando, Florida. Also the silly "draft" that saw teams chosen by a former player is gone and the old AFC vs NFC format is back.
The Chicago Bears have had at least one representative named to the Pro Bowl every year since 1999. (Bonus points if you can name the Bears' lone Pro Bowler in '99 without Googling.)
Last year they only had one player make it, Kyle Long as a right tackle. It was Long's third straight year making it, but his first at tackle. With a move back inside to guard, I think he's a solid bet to make it a fourth straight year as a Pro Bowler.
Other Chicago Bears' with Pro Bowl experience are Alshon Jeffery (WR - 2013), Marc Mariani, (KR - 2010), Robbie Gould (PK - 2006) and Jay Cutler (QB - 2008).
In my opinion here are a few potential 1st time Pro Bowlers for the Bears, Eddie Goldman (NT), Danny Trevathan (ILB) and Pernell McPhee (OLB).
What do you guys think?
Do you have Long penciled for another? What about a return for Jeffery?
Any other surprising predictions from you guys just leave them in the comment section.