The 2014 Pro Bowl is right around the corner. This year we will witness plenty of changes. From a different player selection process to rule changes to new uniforms, this will certainly be unlike any Pro Bowl we have seen before.
Still, one thing will remain constant: There will be plenty of talent on display.
It all comes down to a matter of physicality, really. How much are these players going to bring it? After all, in Pro Bowl's past, we witnessed nothing more than glorified flag football.
Hopefully that all changes this year, and players from both sides of the ball are able to step up in big ways. If these All Pros are able to deliver top-notch performances, this contest could turn out to be a pleasant surprise.
Assuming everything goes the way it's intended, and we are actually treated to a viable football game, there are certain players who are set to stand out from the rest.
Andrew Luck, QB, Team Sanders
The Pro Bowl has been an all-out aerial assault in recent years. This year should be no different. If any quarterback is used to putting the burden of his team on his throwing shoulder, it's Luck. It would not be surprising to see Luck pass over 20 times during his limited playing time.
With (finally) a tremendous supporting cast surrounding Luck, he will reap the benefits. Expect Luck to gain the most passing yards of any Pro Bowl quarterback in 2014.
Josh Gordon, WR, Team Rice
Over the 2013-14 regular season Gordon caught 87 passes for 1,646 yards and nine touchdowns—with the Browns. Now, he will have the pleasure of finally having a fantastic wide receiver across from him and a future Hall of Fame quarterback in Drew Brees.
For Gordon, it simply doesn't get much better than this. Gordon will be able to stretch the field and rely on Brees' strong, accurate arm to devastate the opposing secondary all day long.
Jimmy Graham, TE, Team Rice
There is certainly going to be lots of competition to get the football during the Pro Bowl; however, Graham has one advantage—he gets his regular quarterback. Chemistry between two football players is very important and it will show when Brees and Graham hook up on numerous occasions.
Aside from that familiarity, Graham is simply a beast on the field. All-Pro defense or not, he is incredibly difficult to cover and possibly even more difficult to tackle. He'll have a big day for sure.
A.J. Green, WR, Team Sanders
Looking over the wide receiver corps of Team Sanders, it becomes apparent that Green is the most trustworthy and consistent target. This team has three relatively young quarterbacks in Nick Foles, Andrew Luck and Cam Newton—young quarterbacks love security blankets.
Green is very difficult to cover and can find space against any defense. Expect this trio of quarterbacks to look in Green's direction early and often.
Robert Quinn, DE, Team Rice
A defensive player? Really? Yes. Quinn finished the 2013-14 season recording 19 sacks. He was absolutely unstoppable all season long. He will be facing off against some very good offensive linemen during the Pro Bowl. However, he will also be up against some inexperienced quarterbacks.
The youth at the quarterback position on Team Sanders could allow Quinn some chances to knife into the backfield and obtain a couple of very elusive Pro Bowl sacks.
Jamaal Charles, RB, Team Sanders
Yes, generally running games are not heavily featured in the Pro Bowl. Although, Charles is nothing remotely close to a one-dimensional running back. He is extremely versatile and a very effective receiver out of the backfield.
Charles also has three quarterbacks who are no strangers to checking down to running backs when need be. Taking his rushes and receptions into account, Charles could certainly come away with the most touches of any player in the 2014 Pro Bowl—knowing Charles' skill set, that's a scary thought.
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!