The Pro Bowl has been of waning interest to NFL fans for years now. Despite a few gimmicky rule shakeups like longer extra points, a new draft format and a public relations campaign attempting to package the game as real life fantasy football, the 2015 game doesn't look to put a charge back into the fan base.
But if you appreciate the Pro Bowl for what it is -- a group of really good football players screwing around in a pickup game for a couple of hours -- it can still be somewhat enjoyable.
Other changes implemented in recent years are 1) move the game out of Hawaii and 2) play it the week before the Super Bowl. This year's all-star exhibition is Glendale, Ariz., where the New England Patriots and Seattle Seahawks will meet with the world championship on the line a week later.
Preceding the game itself are a string of events. Here's what you can expect leading up to the game:
6-8 p.m. ET: NFL Official Saturday night party
The league is putting on a good time for folks making the trip. At the party, guests can enjoy a complimentary bar, a specialty drink and some local food. There will also be a live musical performance and cheerleaders. The event will take place at the Montelucia Resort and Spa.
Noon-1 p.m. ET: ESPN's Postseason NFL Countdown hosted by Wendi Nix
1 p.m. ET: University of Phoenix Stadium parking lots open
2 p.m. ET: stadium entry plazas and stadium gates open
TBA: NFL official Pro Bowl tailgate party at University of Phoenix Stadium Campus
This is another good time sponsored by the league, featuring a full menu of food and a complimentary bar full of beer, wine and soft drinks. There will also be some live entertainment and celebrity appearances.
6:05 p.m. ET: player warmups
7:50 p.m. ET: national anthem and player introductions
6-8 p.m. ET: ESPN's Postseason NFL Countdown hosted by Chris Berman
7 p.m. ET: Pro Bowl pregame ceremonies
8 p.m. ET: 2015 Pro Bowl game