I’ve had the honor of being selected to the Pro Bowl four times, each season from 2013-16. But I’ve only played in the game twice, in 2015 and 2016. I had a pretty good reason for not playing in my first two, though.
I was getting ready to play in the Super Bowl.
Each time I was selected to the Pro Bowl was awesome, and if I get selected this year, it will be awesome once again. It’s a blessing each and every time you’re chosen.
There are so many amazing players in this league. With all the tremendous talent in the NFL, to be singled out and selected as one of the best that the NFL has to offer—it’s an honor. It’s a game you watch as a kid; you hope and pray and dream that one day you’ll play in it.
Because when you do, it’s proof that people like how you play the game and respect what you do on the field.
As for the experience, the experience is something else whether the game is held in Hawaii, Orlando, or wherever. It’s a chance to relax a little and just play football without having to worry about the outcome.
Where else can you throw a wrestling move on Clay Matthews without causing a bench-clearing brawl? Where else can you run a reverse, lose 22 yards on it, and not have everyone get mad at you?
I’ve enjoyed playing in the Pro Bowl. I loved being able to talk to and practice against the best players in the league (at least the ones not playing in the Super Bowl). At what other time do you get a chance to have a legend like Charles Woodson giving you pointers?
Then there’s the chance to interact with the fans after practice and let them know how much you appreciate their support.
It’s a great experience from beginning to end and a real honor.