Last night was the Pro Bowl skills competition, which was actually a lot of fun. The NFL finally got the message that folks like that kind of thing. The NBA and MLB have had a lot of success with their skills challenges for years.
There were some NFL skill oriented challenges as well as some unique ones. Though, none of the three Raiders in the Pro Bowl participated, so the closest to a Raiders presence on the day was Charles Woodson as the NFC Legend coach. Jerome Bettis led the AFC team.
First up was the Best Hands competition which had receivers do an ‘around the world’ style timed event featuring two handed, one handed, sideline, and over-the-shoulder catches. Competitors were Mike Evans, TY Hilton, Odell Beckham Jr, and Jarvis Landry. Landry would take home the win for the AFC with a time of 52.6 followed by Beckham (52.8), Evans (1:10.7), and Hilton (1:17.4).
Next it was the Power Relay Challenge featuring a wall lift by Von Miller, a weight pull by Miller and Geno Atkins, a weight push with Miller, Atkins, and Joe Thomas, and a dash through a foam wall by Jay Ajayi. The AFC finished with a time of 32.7.
The NFC had Thomas Davis lift the wall, Davis and Gerald McCoy in the pull, Davis, McCoy, and Jason Kelce on the push, then Ezekiel Elliott dash through the wall. They finished as the winner with a time of 28.7.
Third was the drone drop with players fielding a football dropped from varying heights from a drone. Participants were Patrick Peterson, Odell Beckham Jr, Chris Harris Jr, and Jarvis Landry. The drone would fly higher each round with players being eliminated should they fail to field it two times. At 125 feet, only Beckham was able to field it for the win, putting the NFC ahead by a score of 2-1.
Fourth up was probably my favorite. It was the passing challenge in which quarterbacks were given one minute to hit targets of varying sizes and distances and point values some of which were moving. Players can’t hit the same target twice. A perfect score would be a 35. Philip Rivers would win it for the AFC with a score of 20. Drew Brees and Andy Dalton tied at 16, followed by Dak Prescott (11).
It was tied up at 2-2 heading into...
The final event was a game of dodgeball. Get hit, you’re out. Catch the ball, the guy who threw it is out. The AFC was beaten pretty good, though TY Hilton held out for a while, catching several balls to knock out a few NFC guys before getting hit on a throw by Elliott to end it and give the NFC the win in the Skills Showdown.
The play of Alex Smith wasn’t helping either.
Add dodgeball to the list of sports Alex Smith sucks at. pic.twitter.com/kft4Ism7Oy— Clay Wendler (@ClayWendler) January 27, 2017
How to watch:
What: AFC vs NFC Pro Bowl
When: Sunday, January 29, 2017
Where: Camping World Stadium, Orlando, Florida
Game Time: 5:00 pm Pacific (8:00 pm ET)