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2020 Pro Bowl open thread and rule changes

The league is experimenting with two potential rules changes during the Pro Bowl

The NFL’s annual Pro Bowl game kicks off today at 3 p.m. from Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Fla, and can be seen on ESPN/ABC.

The Buffalo Bills will be represented by three players during the Pro Bowl: cornerback Tre’Davious White, linebacker Tremaine Edmunds, and return man Andre Roberts. It’s the second career Pro Bowl appearance for Roberts, and the first such honor for both White and Edmunds.

Additionally, Hall of Famer and 11-time Pro Bowl defensive end Bruce Smith will serve as one of two Pro Bowl Legends Captains for the AFC squad.

While Bills fans can look forward to cheering on Edmunds, Roberts, and White during the Pro Bowl, they can also get their first look at a pair of rules changes the league is experimenting with heading into the offseason.

The first experimental rule change pertains to the league’s continued effort to minimize kickoffs. Following a successful field goal or extra-point try attempt on a touchdown, the scoring team will have to decide between two options when it comes to handling the ensuing possession.

They can either:

A. Give the ball to the opposing team at their own 25-yard line to commence a new drive, or,

B. Opt for a chance at another offensive possession by taking over at its own 25-yard line for a fourth-and-15 conversion attempt. If the scoring team converts a first down, they will retain possession, and a new series of downs would ensue. If the fourth-down conversion is unsuccessful, it would be akin to a turnover on downs, resulting in the opposing team taking over at the dead-ball spot.

The other rule change fans can see during the Pro Bowl addresses pre-snap penalties.

According to the NFL, this rule change concerns flexed receivers, and states:

“It is not a false start if a flexed, eligible receiver in a two-point stance who flinches or picks up one foot, as long as his other foot remains partially on the ground and he resets for one second prior to the snap. A receiver who fits this exception is not considered to be ‘in motion’ for the purposes of the Illegal Shift rules.”

“It is a false start if all 11 offensive players have been set for at least one full second and any flexed, eligible receiver breaks his stance by picking up both feet.”

Your Pro Bowl thread is here, ladies and gentlemen. Feel free to leave your comments on how the Bills players fare, or offer up your take on these proposed rules changes in the comments section below!