The Walt Disney Company and NFL are expanding their relationship with Peyton Manning’s Omaha Productions, using the The former quarterback’s production company helped “shape the show” into a completely reimagined Pro Bowl.
For starters, the Pro Bowl (actually the NFL’s take on the All-Star Game) will be on February 5th on ESPN and ABC flag football game, . The switch from tackle football to flag football was a sea change for the NFL, but with some players opting out of the game entirely or playing very carefully to avoid injury, the league decided to revamp the entire game.
Beginning next year, the Pro Bowl will be restarted as a “Pro Bowl,” culminating in a football game. “New challenges will also be integrated in the days leading up to the game, with players demonstrating their football and non-football skills in unique competitions.” Verizon is a sponsor of the event.
That’s where Omaha Productions comes in.
Manning’s company will help shape this week’s program, and Manning himself will be coaching during the flag game.
ESPN has developed deep relationships with Manning and Omaha that stem from his celebrity Monday Night Football alternately broadcast, which he hosted with his younger brother (and former quarterback) Eli Manning. The channel has since used Omaha to develop other alternative broadcasts for the PGA Championship and college football (hosted by popular sports celebrity Pat McAfee).
Now, Manning will have a chance to shape the NFL’s Pro Bowl at a time when the game is changing dramatically.