Aloha, Hawaii. The Pro Bowl is moving to Arizona's University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, the site of the next Super Bowl, following the 2014 NFL season, as first reported by CBSChicago.com.
The NFL confirmed the move later on Wednesday.
Ratings for the game have been low, and fan accessibility even more remote on the island, even though the destination is seen as a paid vacation for the players who are elected — and oftentimes for their families, friends and teammates.
The NFL is hoping that moving the game to the same location as the Super Bowl will bring with it a lot more media attention. The league tried this in 2010 when the game was played in Miami, and ratings were through the roof. They moved the game back to Hawaii the following year, likely because the idea of a Pro Bowl in Indianapolis — the site of of the next Super Bowl — seemed fairly ridiculous.
But why? They have NBA all-star games in Salt Lake City and Houston and Toronto, and baseball's all-star games can be played in Baltimore and Milwaukee, but the coddled NFL fans can't go to places akin to these?
We are sure the league fears that the top players will continue to drop out of the game the more it's played in less weather-friendly cities, and there's no way the tail will wag the dog as far as Super Bowl locations are concerned. But for now, this appears to be a friendly, one-year fix of an annual problem.
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