If you wanted to watch the best quarterback in pro football, you won't be seeing him playing in the Super Bowl this Sunday. Rather, you'll have to tune in to the game no one watches the following Sunday, the NFL Pro Bowl.
If the article picture didn't give it away, you'll be able to see the league MVP on display, playing in the 9th Pro Bowl of his career (7th consecutive).
Now although many people think the Pro Bowl is a joke, sit back and think about it for a second. What is so bad about the NFL's All-Star game?
Sure, the rules are a bit overprotective but what do you expect when the league's top talent faces off in a meaningless game?
Peyton Manning for one, is a player who has always taken this game very seriously. He's played in the game in every one of the nine years he's been elected. Not only has he played but he's played hard.
Last year everyone made fun of Peyton for being the only player who cared about practice. As every other player was dancing around laughing, Peyton was taking every rep in practice seriously.
Seems as if his hard work has paid off seeing as he owns every significant Pro Bowl passing record there is.
Now, for those who might want to make a sly remark about the Colts not going anywhere in the post season, think about this...
Super Bowls, playoff advancement, etc. are all team accolades. The players who play on the best teams advance and sometimes (like this year), your team may have caught a bad break.
Does that make Peyton Manning any less of a great quarterback? No.
Peyton's greatness is made obvious by his continual ability to produce year after year. The Pro Bowl is a great place for individual players to be recognized for their championship-like efforts.
Sometimes you get championship-caliber players (think of Calvin Johnson) who happen to not play on the best team in the league.
That doesn't make them any less good.
So I hope that in time, people learn to appreciate the Pro Bowl a little more. It's a venue to appreciate the league's top talent and a reward for the efforts of individual players who played like champions over the course of the full NFL season.