After three thrilling weeks of playoff games, the NFL is set to hold its annual all-star game this weekend.
The AFC-NFC Pro Bowl that will take place at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, Hawaii, on Sunday will feature many of the game’s current NFL stars. The only Pro Bowlers not playing on Sunday are either injured or make up the eight Patriots and two Giants getting ready for Super Bowl XLVI.
This will be the 42nd game between the AFC and NFC. With a 55-41 win in last year’s all-star game, the NFC currently leads the series 21-20 and has won three of the last four games.
The only team with greater representation in the Pro Bowl than New England and Baltimore (eight) is San Francisco, which is sending nine players. The Broncos, Packers and Steelers had seven players voted in.
The AFC will feature linebacker Ray Lewis of the Ravens, who will be making his 13th trip to the Pro Bowl. Cornerback Champ Bailey and safety Brian Dawkins of the Broncos are making appearances 11 and nine, respectively. Bailey is the only defensive back in NFL history to be selected to more than nine Pro Bowls.
Atlanta’s Tony Gonzalez is the NFC’s elder statesman with 12 all-star selections, the most ever by a tight end. Green Bay cornerback Charles Woodson and Chicago linebacker Brian Urlacher are each taking their eighth trip to Honolulu.
With all the rule changes that are enforced to protect players during the Pro Bowl, the advantage goes to the better offense. Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees and Cam Newton look better than Ben Roethlisberger, Philip Rivers and Andy Dalton on paper.
NFC 48, AFC 38