Is there an NFL Pro Bowl this year? Date, time, rosters & more to watch 2021 Madden Pro Bowl

Written By Billy Heyen
(Getty Images)

The two-week break between the conference championship games and Super Bowl really leaves some football fans in a state of withdrawal. At least there's the Pro Bowl, right?

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the answer to that question in 2021 is a "sort of." There'll be a game, but not in person. Since Zoom couldn't handle a football game, apparently, the NFL had to turn to the well-established Madden NFL franchise to stage the game. 

Some would say the league should've started doing that a long time ago. Snoop Dogg will even be on a controller for a portion of the game. You're telling me that's not better than professional athletes not attempting to tackle each other because they play a very violent sport and this is just an all-star game? 

While the NFL will surely try to bring the Pro Bowl back in 2022 as a real football game, this could be the beginning of the end for that. It'd probably be more entertaining to watch NFL players react to moves their virtual selves pull off in Madden, anyway.

So anyway, if you're trying to watch this revamped version of the Pro Bowl, we've got all the details below, along with the rosters that'll be taking part.

MORE: How Khalil Mack went from 46 overall video game rating in college to NFL star

Is there an NFL Pro Bowl this year?

There is an NFL Pro Bowl this year — sort of.

There will be no actual, real-life Pro Bowl football game played in 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Pro Bowl rosters were chosen and will play against each other, but it will take place in EA Sports’ Madden NFL 21, the latest in the popular video game series.

What time does the Pro Bowl start?

  • Date: Sunday, Jan. 31
  • Time: 3 & 5 p.m. ET

The Pro Bowl coverage for 2021 will come in two parts. First, at 3 p.m. ET, there’ll be a “Pro Bowl Celebration” on ESPN and ABC. It will include roundtable discussions with NFL legends along with both Joey Bosa and DeAndre Hopkins breaking down football film for younger viewers. 

The (Madden) Pro Bowl itself will start at 5 p.m. ET as a streaming event on the NFL’s Facebook, Twitter and YouTube channels along with EA’s Madden Twitch channel.

This is the usual date that the Pro Bowl would take place, the Sunday between conference championship Sunday and Super Bowl Sunday.

What channel is the Pro Bowl on?

  • TV channel: ABC, ESPN
  • Live stream: NFL's Facebook, Twitter and YouTube channels; EA's Madden Twitch channel

For those looking to watch the actual Madden stream of the Pro Bowl, you won't find it on terrestrial television. Rather, you'll have to use one of the NFL's streaming platforms or go to EA's Madden Twitch channel. That game begins at 5 p.m. ET.

The "Pro Bowl Celebration" taking place on ABC and ESPN starts at 3 p.m. ET and features various roundtable and other NFL discussion, but it won't feature any actual gameplay. That can only be found on the various live streams beginning at 5 p.m. ET.

MORE: Watch the "Pro Bowl Celebration" on fuboTV (7-day free trial)

Who is playing the Madden Pro Bowl game?

This won't just be a Madden simulated version of the Pro Bowl. Big names will be controlling each team in a battle for conference supremacy.

Controlling the AFC side will be Snoop Dogg, Deshaun Watson, Derrick Henry and Keyshawn Johnson. Hopefully Watson doesn't request a trade mid-game.

The NFC players will include Bubba Wallace, Marshawn Lynch, Kyler Murray and Jamal Adams. If we're handicapping by assuming younger age helps Madden prowess, the NFC has the advantage with all four players younger than Johnson and Snoop.

AFC Pro Bowl roster

Position Player Team
QB Patrick Mahomes Chiefs
QB Josh Allen Bills
QB Deshaun Watson Texans
RB Derrick Henry Titans
RB Nick Chubb Browns
RB Josh Jacobs Raiders
WR Tyreek Hill Chiefs
WR Stefon Diggs Bills
WR Keenan Allen Chargers
WR A.J. Brown Titans
TE Travis Kelce Chiefs
TE Darren Waller Raiders
FB Patrick Ricard Ravens
T Laremy Tunsil Texans
T Eric Fisher Chiefs
T Orlando Brown Ravens
G Quenton Nelson Colts
G Joel Bitonio Browns
G David DeCastro Steelers
C Maurkice Pouncey Steelers
C Ryan Kelly Colts
DE Myles Garrett Browns
DE Joey Bosa Chargers
DE Frank Clark Chiefs
DT Chris Jones Chiefs
DT Cameron Heyward Steelers
DT Calais Campbell Ravens
OLB T.J. Watt Steelers
OLB Bradley Chubb Broncos
OLB Matt Judon Ravens
ILB Darius Leonard Colts
ILB Tremaine Edmunds Bills
CB Xavien Howard Dolphins
CB Tre'Davious White Bills
CB Marlon Humphrey Ravens
CB Stephon Gilmore Patriots
FS Minkah Fitzpatrick Steelers
FS Justin Simmons Broncos
SS Tyrann Mathieu Chiefs
LS Morgan Cox Ravens
P Jake Bailey Patriots
K Justin Tucker Ravens
RS Andre Roberts Bills
ST Matthew Slater Patriots

Bold: Starter

NFC Pro Bowl roster

Position Player Team
QB Aaron Rodgers Packers
QB Russell Wilson Seahawks
QB Kyler Murray Cardinals
RB Dalvin Cook Vikings
RB Alvin Kamara Saints
RB Aaron Jones Packers
WR Davante Adams Packers
WR DeAndre Hopkins Cardinals
WR DK Metcalf Seahawks
WR Justin Jefferson Vikings
TE T.J. Hockenson Lions
TE Evan Engram Giants
FB Kyle Juszczyk 49ers
T David Bakhtiari Packers
T Trent Williams 49ers
T Terron Armstead Saints
G Brandon Scherff Washington
G Elgton Jenkins Packers
G Andrus Peat Saints
C Jason Kelce Eagles
C Frank Ragnow Lions
DE Cameron Jordan Saints
DE Brandon Graham Eagles
DE Chase Young Washington
DT Aaron Donald Rams
DT Fletcher Cox Eagles
DT Grady Jarrett Falcons
OLB Khalil Mack Bears
OLB Za'Darius Smith Packers
OLB Jason Pierre-Paul Buccaneers
ILB Bobby Wagner Seahawks
ILB Fred Warner 49ers
CB Jalen Ramsey Rams
CB Jaire Alexander Packers
CB Marshon Lattimore Saints
CB James Bradberry Giants
FS Quandre Diggs Seahawks
SS Budda Baker Cardinals
SS Jamal Adams Seahawks
LS Tyler Ott Seahawks
P Jack Fox Lions
K Younghoe Koo Falcons
RS Cordarrelle Patterson Bears
ST Nick Bellore Seahawks

Bold: Starter

Pro Bowl replacement players

Because there's no actual football game being played for the 2021 Pro Bowl, there's no need for replacement players. Everyone can be healthy in the Madden video game.

A year ago, there were 17 replacement players for the Pro Bowl, so this season allows a lot fewer players to actually refer to themselves as Pro Bowlers. Conversely, it doesn't allow the league to make up for a snubbed player by inserting him as a replacement. 

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