New York Jets safety Jamal Adams made his Pro Bowl debut in 2019. Now he wants to see the game reach another level.
I wont miss another Pro bowl. Believe that.
— Jamal Adams (@TheAdamsEra) December 20, 2017
- Jamal Adams’ guarantees: 1
- Joe Namath‘s guarantees: 1
But just because he fulfilled his own declaration a year ago, doesn’t mean he enjoyed his trip to Orlando.
“At the very beginning of the game was very frustrating. It was,” Adams said from Super Bowl Radio Row in Atlanta speaking with WFAN’s “Boomer & Gio.” “Because I don’t like the tempo. I’m not going to lie to you. I can’t stand the tempo. Because at the end of the day, man, this is an opportunity of a lifetime to go to a stage and play with the best of the best and see who’s really the best. To me, I think everybody needs to go full speed.
The Pro Bowl has long been criticized for its lackadaisical play and gimmicky elements.
That manifested itself in the latest rendition of the annual all-star game when New York Giants star running back Saquon Barkley, Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans lined up on defense with Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey catching a touchdown pass in the 26-7 win for the AFC Conference.
The #ProBowl's just for fun?
No one told @TheAdamsEra that.
MIC'D UP: 33 🗣 pic.twitter.com/lVJvpFddAy
— New York Jets (@nyjets) January 31, 2019
But even beyond the gimmicks, the cardinal sin of this in Adams’s eyes is the pace of play:
“I was always raised to play the game the right way because you never know when it could be your last,” Adams speaking with WFAN’s “Boomer & Gio”. “It could be your last Pro Bowl. You never know. And I know one speed, one speed only. And I’m not going to go out there and disrespect the game. I was mic’ed up during the game, and at the beginning, I was holding my tongue because I was really frustrated, man, because it wasn’t fun.”
To be honest, if players are worried about getting injured, they probably shouldn’t play in the game. Trying to play slower may actually open them up to more potential injuries by only going half speed.
The problem, though, with the NFL trying to update the Pro Bowl is, why should they?
It’s worth noting, for as many people that complain about the Pro Bowl, it still delivers massive ratings. The latest results are in on this year’s Pro Bowl and the numbers are astonishing: “delivering over eight million viewers,” per the ESPN Press Release.
So if the NFL is going to change things, it won’t be financially driven. The NFL is making a lot of green, so if they change anything of their own volition, it would be to increase the general perception of their annual all-star game.