This year's NFL Pro Bowl has made some major changes to its structure to try to garner some more fan interest. Instead of seeing the NFC battle the AFC, Jerry Rice and Deion Sanders drafted the two teams like a real-life fantasy football draft. According to ESPN on Jan. 21, Jerry Rice won the coin toss and made his first round pick New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees.
Rice also made St. Louis Rams defensive end Robert Quinn his first defensive player drafted. Deion Sanders first two draft picks were Kansas City Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles and Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt.
The NFL stated that they hope this new school yard and fantasy football inspired format will make the game more competitive and will help reinvigorate fan interest in the contest. As with the past few years, the NFL Pro Bowl will take place this Sunday, in between the conference championship games and the Super Bowl.
Jerry Rice and Deion Sanders planned to draft 11 players on Tuesday and will draft the rest on Wednesday live on the NFL Network. Those first two people drafted will serve as the team captains for their individual teams.
The rest of the 2014 NFL Pro Bowl draft will take place at 8 p.m. EST on the NFL Network.