The NFL has declared the experiment of playing the Pro Bowl a week before the Super Bowl a success, announcing today that in 2011, the Pro Bowl will be played one week before the Super Bowl for the second consecutive year. As previously announced, the Pro Bowl is moving back to Hawaii in 2011.
“Playing the Pro Bowl before the Super Bowl generated more excitement and interest in the event and also kicked off Super Bowl week in an innovative new way,” NFL Senior VP of Events Frank Supovitz said in a statement. “We are pleased to return to the State of Hawaii, which has embraced the Pro Bowl for 30 years.”
The 2010 Pro Bowl on ESPN was watched by an average of 12.3 million viewers, the most for a Pro Bowl since 2000 and a 40 percent increase from 2009.
Next year’s Pro Bowl will be shown live on Fox at 7 p.m. Eastern on Sunday, January 30, 2011. Super Bowl XLV will be a week later on Sunday, February 6, at Cowboys Stadium, also televised by Fox.