USA TODAY Sports
From the FanPosts -Joel
Since Joel isn't likely to write a column on it, I figured now would be a good time to bring back my "What I Saw" series. Some will be Chiefs related but really this going to be a breakdown of the game as a whole.
Seeing the guys actually give some effort makes this a whole lot easier, otherwise this would just turn into a rant and I will save that for my review of the Chiefs season (if I ever get to it).
- Effort- This is what I want to see every time I watch the Pro Bowl. I saw most players actually give some effort and looked like they want to keep this game (or just their free trip to Hawaii). Either way I saw players laying the wood and actually giving a damn. Nice to see that it wasn't another flag football game like last year.
- Excitement- This game felt like it had some meaning behind it. None of that predictability of years past. You wanted to see what's next. Oh and NFL, if you want players to show excitement and bring true meaning, bring Eric Berry back every year.
- Eric Berry- He had said that he was going to give it his all and well he did. He was laying hits everywhere. At one point, it seemed like anytime someone needed to be tackled, Eric was there. He cooled his jets later on (I imagine someone had a chat with him) but he and Derrick Johnson were on fire all day long. He showed why he deserved to be there. If this is the intensity he shows during an exhibition game, imagine what is in store next year.
- Ed Hochuli- Now would be a good time to mention of the funniest lines since "Givin him the business" for a ref. After a quarter and half of what seemed to be like there were not going to be any flags, Champ Bailey commits a penalty. Ed steps up and, "Yes, there are penalties in the Pro Bowl". Who knew a man with a body built like a Greek God and with a law degree could be so funny.
- Best Pro Bowl in a long time- After nearly getting rid of it and the Commish laying down the law, the players buck up and give us one of the best Pro Bowls I have ever seen. It appears that this game will set the standard for future Pro Bowls. It looked more like a regular game than a Pop Warner game. This is how it should be. How can you not like Jeff Saturday hiking the ball to Peyton Manning one last time? I hope that becomes a tradition of former teammates in opposite conferences that have been together for a long time getting one last memory.
Now we get to the part where I start ripping into some things. This will include some necessary changes that are going to be needed.
- A Certain Texans QB- Yeah if you thought I could go 508 words without mentioning Matt Schaub, you were wrong. Normally in the Pro Bowl, the QB shines. Well for every rule, there is an exception and Schaub is that exception. I have seen more effort from my nephew who hates football. If you want to look at why the AFC lost, look no further than Schaub. Not one good thing came from him. If I didn't know any better, Matt Cassel was out there. You know what? I would have preferred Matty Nice out there.
- AFC Playcalling- There is vanilla play calling and then there is the AFC Pro Bowl team play calling. I am not sure what the hell John Fox has against KC or running the football (Tebow anxiety) but the fact that Jamaal Charles or CJ Spiller got hardly any carries is crazy. I understand about safety but you have to give things a try when you are behind. Two of the best backs in the league and you don't use them. JC is a very good pass catcher and can make people miss. It was sickening to see two dynamic players not being used in the All Star game.
- Defense needs fixed- This is my biggest complaint. You have guys playing out of position most of the time. JJ Watt is not a 4-3 DE and Tamba Hali is not a 4-3 OLB. Again I understand safety but what is the point of bringing three of the best pass rushers if you are not even going to utilize them or allow them to. Do something to make it fair for all players involved because seeing Tamba Hali and Justin Houston playing in coverage is almost laughable. Either allow teams to change it up (3-4 to 4-3) or allow teams to blitz a few times a game. Defensively the NFC was at an advantage since most of the teams play the 43 so players are not in situations like this. Just out of memory, all of the AFC's LB's except for maybe Mayo (New England runs a hybrid) play in a 3-4. In a 4-3 Tamba, Houston and Mathis' hands would be in the dirt. Either allow them to play in their respective positions and do what they do best or tell them to stay home. It hurts to see a pure pass rusher dropping back like is a safety or corner.
Overall I am happy with the Pro Bowl this year and if this can continue, it will remain to be a hit.