For the first time since Alex Smith was under center in 2017, the University of Utah will have a former Ute signal caller in the action come Pro Bowl Sunday. Baltimore Ravens Quarterback, Tyler Huntley, who played at the U from 2016-2019, will replace Josh Allen in the flag football action at Allegiant Stadium down the road. This swap is due to the Bills QB suffering through an elbow injury and most likely not wanting to play flag football after being embarrassed by the Cincinnati Bengals in the Divisional round. As the old saying goes, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, and to see the undrafted Huntley make a pro bowl as a backup QB has to be incredibly fun for him and his fan base. 

Tyler Huntley started 5 and appeared in 6 total games for Baltimore throughout the Lamar Jackson injury and contract dilemma. Huntley was 3-3 during his time on the field and got the nod in Baltimore’s wild card playoff opener on the road in Cincinnati. Huntley threw two touchdowns with 226 yards and ran for 54 yards in a near upset that was derailed by a fumble at the goal line as Huntley skyed high and tried to stretch the ball over the goal line. The Bengals returned it for a touchdown and the rest was history. It was a gutty performance and for Ute fans they were thrilled to watch their former star play with poise on the big stage. Tyler Huntley would even finish with the 2nd highest passer rating in the AFC postseason per CBS, only behind Mahomes with a 92. 

As happy as the beehive state is for Tyler Huntley, the move was not announced without pushback. The Pro Bowl has been so bad as of late. This was so much the case they changed the format completely by no longer playing a legitimate football game. That being said, being selected was still a high honor. It still is, but some feel it may be slightly diluted these days. Huntley finished the regular season with a 2-3 Touchdown to interception ratio on 112 attempts. He completed about 66 percent of these passes at about 5.9 yards an attempt. Mike McFadden, pointed out on Twitter that Other Quarterbacks like Joshua Dobbs, Brett Rypien, Desmond Ridder and Kyle Allen all had two touchdowns this year as well. If any of those names were selected, it would be laughable. But none of those guys played well in a playoff game. Let alone saw the field in a playoff game. Another fan made mention that guys like Jarret Stidham, Teddy Bridgewater, Bailey Zappe and Joe Flacco all had better statistics than Huntley. Once again that may be true, but none of them nearly beat the Bengals. Listen, the playoff argument is all I got and I am aware that playoffs have no impact on Pro Bowl Voting. Clearly some players declined the Pro Bowl Invite, who knows if Davis Mills or Jacoby Brissett declined, but the stats alone would have to make a person think that they were offered. If fans were going to cause a stink over Derek Carr being named as an alternate, then you can bet the Huntley situation would be an uproar. 

It isn’t just fan’s however who are calling for the Pro Bowl to be cancelled. Former Broncos WR Brandon Stokley asked what are we doing? And stated online that its “time to be done with the pro bowl.” Free Agent Linebacker, Will Compton pointed out that Titans backup, Josh Dobbs had the same number of touchdowns in 4 less games and was in disbelief the NFL would snub Dobbs. Companies like FanDuel and BetMGM took turns posting memes about the situation. You will find a lot of disbelief if you scour the timeline on your favorite social media platform.

Let’s be honest though, the people complaining about the Pro Bowl, and how it used to mean something, were not going to watch the Pro Bowl competition anyway. The Pro Bowl itself transformed into a flag football game with skill challenges, proving they likely don’t care much about making the game add any legitimacy anymore either. It’s about having fun and having a form of football to pass the time before the Eagles and Chiefs kick off for Super Bowl 57. After all, what about the cool storylines coming with Huntley making the Pro Bowl? Jonas Shaffer shared that Huntley is the 11th undrafted QB to make the dance sharing that title with names like: Warren Moon, Kurt Warner, Tony Romo, and Jeff Garcia. For us here in Utah, we will celebrate Huntley’s achievements, Ute fans will rub it into BYU fan’s faces, and no one will tune in anyway. 

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