For the last few years, the Pro Bowl has changed locations from the usual Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, Hawaii, to Orlando, Florida, played at Camping World Stadium. The location of the event has drawn more attention than the game itself in some regard, which could be the case yet again, the NFL is nearing a decision where the game could be played in 2020 that may see it move to yet another spot in the country.
Pro Bowl moved to Orlando
Starting in 1980, Aloha Stadium laid host to the Pro Bowl, which made a trip to Hawaii an annual event for many of the league’s top players who got the unique opportunity to play in the game.
From that point on through 2015, the Pro Bowl had been played in Hawaii all but twice, where the other two locations were at the University of Phoenix Stadium (2015) and Sun Life Stadium (2009). The event will be held in Orlando for what will be the fourth straight year.
However, things look to be headed towards another change as the NFL’s four-year plan with Camping World Stadium is going into potentially its final game on Sunday. That will mean that the league has a decision to make on what location could be next to hold the event for the coming years, and two spots have quickly emerged on the map.
Possible new location for Pro Bowl
The NFL is entering the final year of their four-year plan to play at Camping World Stadium, which has opened the door to the Pro Bowl being moved to another location.
With that being the case, the NFL looks to be entertaining the idea of moving the event over to Los Angeles or Las Vegas, according to Jabari Young of CNBC.
“It’s been a great four years,” Peter O’Reilly, executive vice president of NFL events and club business development, told CNBC. “From our perspective, it’s looking at what are the other options.”
The two new stadiums in both locations will open in the 2020 season with Sofi Stadium in Los Angeles, where the Rams and Chargers will play, while the Raiders will call Allegiant Stadium Las Vegas home. These two spots have more than enough appeal to host the Pro Bowl as each city has its own local attractions that could serve well to help gather a more massive crowd for the event.
There is some chatter that Allegiant Stadium is gathering some momentum to see it moved there for at least a year. The NFL enjoys having the game in Orlando because of the activities in the city that create a family-type vibe. However, there still isn’t much interest in the game that has already seen a couple of new rules implemented to spice it up.
That makes for changing the location that much more appealing as a new stadium could be another element that draws more fans
A new Pro Bowl location is imminent
Over the years, the NFL has had much difficulty drawing much attention to the Pro Bowl. A large chunk of that has come because of the lack of connection the fans have with the game. Many view the event as being a glorified tag football game due to the lack of true competitive nature.
The new rules should with that department, but a change in location to either Sofi or Allegiant stadium may be another step in the right direction. Los Angeles and Las Vegas are both viewed as tourist attractions, which could help the NFL reach the goal of making the week leading up to the game more of an experience that the league can provide its fans to see the star players in a higher capacity.
All of that pushes things towards a change in location being an imminent decision for the NFL to make.