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NFL to replace Pro Bowl with Peyton Manning produced skill challenges | NFL

The NFL is replacing the Pro Bowl with week-long skills competitions and a flag football game, the Associated Press has learned.

The new event will replace the full-contact showcase started in 1951. It will be renamed “The Pro Bowl Games” and will feature players from the AFC and NFC showcasing their football and non-football skills in multi-day challenges. The 2023 Games will be held in Las Vegas and the flag football game at Allegiant Stadium is scheduled for Sunday, February 5.

Peyton Manning and her company Omaha Productions will help shape the programming and promote event content throughout the week. Manning, a 14-time Pro Bowl selection during his Hall of Fame career, will provide his perspective and will also be on the coaching staff for the flag game.

“The Pro Bowl is something that we’ve been looking at for a while, that really continues to evolve,” NFL executive Peter O’Reilly told the Associated Press. “Coming out of last year’s game, we really made the decision based on a lot of internal conversations, getting feedback from GMs and coaches, getting a lot of feedback from players. We think there is a real opportunity to do something completely different here and move away from the traditional game of American football. We decided the goal is to celebrate 88 of the NFL’s biggest stars in a really positive, fun and competitive way.

“Very direct feedback from guys who had been in the Pro Bowl recently was to keep the week build, make sure you have that multi-day element. It was overwhelmingly positive from both the players and the clubs.”

The Pro Bowl debuted in January 1951 in Los Angeles and stayed there for 21 seasons before the game moved to different cities between 1972 and 1980. Hawaii hosted it from 1980 to 2009, and the game has had multiple homes over the years. later, including Miami, Phoenix, Orlando and Las Vegas.

The quality of the game in the Pro Bowl has often been criticized. Players, understandably worried about getting hurt, treat it more like an exhibition than a competition. A game of flag football could increase competition while preventing potential injuries from tackles, blocks, and hits.

The NFL has a great interest in flag football. The league has partnered with the International Federation of American Football to bring flag football to the World Games in July with a view to the 2028 Olympics in Los Angeles.

“The Pro Bowl has always been a time to step back and celebrate football with teammates, fans and family,” Manning told the AP. “I am grateful to be able to continue to be a part of the week as all of us at Omaha Productions work with the NFL to reimagine Pro Bowl Games. Making Sunday’s game a flag football game is great to watch. Youth football has been extremely important to me, and knowing that the NFL FLAG will help grow this sport, I hope boys and girls can see themselves playing the same game as the best players in the world.”

Fan voting will still help determine AFC and NFC team rosters. Tom Brady has the most Pro Bowl invites with 15. Four players received 14 invites, including Manning.

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