New England Patriots

HONOLULU, HI - SUNDAY, JANUARY 31: The Pro Bowl logo on a football during the second half of the 2016 NFL Pro Bowl at Aloha Stadium on January 31, 2016 in Honolulu, Hawaii.Team Irvin defeated Team Rice 49-27. (Photo by Kent Nishimura/Getty Images)

By Alex Barth,

Sorry to break it to you, but everybody’s favorite NFL event, the Pro Bowl, is officially not happening this season. Via an online statement Wednesday afternoon, the league announced that it will be ‘reimagining’ the game this year.

According to the statement, the league will still name Pro Bowl rosters with fan voting opening November 17. However, in place of the game itself, “the league will work closely with the NFLPA and other partners, to create a variety of engaging activities to replace the Pro Bowl game this season.”

Not having an official Pro Bowl game this year gives the NFL much needed schedule flexibility. The league can now institute a much-speculated ‘Week 18’ without delaying the Super Bowl.

“The NFL and NFLPA’s intention is to play a full regular and postseason schedule, culminating at the Super Bowl,” according to the release. This move makes that goal more realistic.

This year’s game was supposed to be held in the brand new Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas. The league announced next year’s Pro Bowl will now be held there instead.

Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at