While the Pro Bowl is truly an exhibition game, it doesn’t mean there weren’t any highlights from the NFC vs. AFC matchup. The Seattle Seahawks had seven players named to the Pro Bowl for the fourth-straight season.
The NFC got the ball to start the game, and with no kickoffs in the Pro Bowl, started on the 25-yard line. Saints quarterback Drew Brees found Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin on the third play of the game for 15 yards and the NFC first down.
The NFC was able to capitalize on the drive with a touchdown and extra point to take the early lead 7-0 with 7:50 left in the first quarter.
And true to the regular season, Seahawks defensive Michael Bennett was the first player to be penalized in the game, for . . . yes, you guessed it, offsides.
Late in the first quarter, Brees took another shot at Baldwin but was unable to connect. Duane Brown entered the game as the NFC’s right tackle.
Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson took the field early in the second quarter to replace Brees. The NFC struggled much of their first drive with Wilson at the helm and had to settle for a field goal.
On the defensive side of the ball, Seattle’s free safety Earl Thomas got his shot to shine in the second quarter with a pass breakup on a ball intended for Chargers Keenan Allen.
Baldwin, Brown and Wilson remained in the game through the first half but things got a little hairy for the NFC before the break. Broncos linebacker Von Miller brought the heat with both Brown and Wilson slow to get up after the play.
The Seahawks frontman remained the starter in the third quarter, but Wilson was picked off early by Chargers Casey Hayward on his final play of the game.
Wilson finished his outing completing nine of 14 passes attempted for 69 yards, one interception and a rating of 46.4.
Rams’ quarterback Jared Goff, in for Wilson after the interception, found Baldwin for 10 yards and his third reception of the day deep in the fourth quarter. Thomas was on the sideline to cheer on his teammate.
Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett was penalized three times for jumping offsides, likely a Pro Bowl record.
The AFC beat the NFC 24-23 and it’s on to the Super Bowl next Sunday.