The Pro Bowl has come under quite a bit of scrutiny lately as many fans accuse players of treating it like nothing more than a walkthrough. It's true that the slow pace of the game and lack of major contact makes the game less than fun. It's not hard to see things from the players' perspective, though, as it would be hard to completely sell out and risk bodily injury for a game that doesn't matter.
Recently, though, players like Peyton Manning and Champ Bailey have attempted to rally their peers into treating the Pro Bowl like it was any regular season game before the league decides to pull the plug on the event in an attempt to save the money they spend on a product that nobody buys. We'll see if the rest of the players in the Pro Bowl take Manning and Bailey's request seriously on Sunday.
The Lions had three players voted into the Pro Bowl, though one will not be playing due to injury and the another was a replacement player. Wide receiver Calvin Johnson was voted in by fans, but he will sit out due to an injury suffered in the regular season. He was replaced by Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones. Ndamukong Suh was voted in as a replacement for the 49ers' Justin Smith and the last player voted in was Lions long snapper Don Muhlbach.
If you plan to watch Sunday's Pro Bowl, here's how:
Location: Aloha Stadium; Honolulu, Hawaii
Date/Time: Sunday, Jan. 27, 2013; 7 p.m. EST
TV Schedule: NBC
NFL Audio Pass (online)
NFL Mobile on Verizon
Dial Global list of broadcasting stations
Odds: NFC by 2½, per OddsShark
Interesting Facts: Last year's Pro Bowl teams combined for more than 100 points as the AFC won by the score of 59-41, and both the AFC and the NFC have won the league's all-star game a total of 21 times. The last time one conference won back-to-back Pro Bowls was when the NFC won in 2008 and '09. The last time the AFC won more than one Pro Bowl in a row was when it won in 2001, '02 and '03. This is only the second Pro Bowl played the weekend before the Super Bowl.