NEW YORK – The NFL played its annual Pro Bowl last Sunday, as Team Irvin defeated Team Carter, 32-28. Now, in the aftermath of this exhibition game featuring the league’s best players (who didn’t drop out or aren’t playing in the Super Bowl or aren’t injured), the search for someone, anyone, who watched every minute of the game on television from start to finish languishes on.
Dr. Gerry Tomlinson, who has dedicated the last decade of his career to studying the NFL Pro Bowl and those who watch it, heads the research team at the United States Anthropology Project that performs this annual study.
“Because of the extreme vitriol the Pro Bowl faces, we are very interested in monitoring and learning from the people who willingly watch it,” Tomlinson said. “Based on our previous findings, watching the Pro Bowl falls in line with many types of BDSM torture practices.”
The process of finding viewers hasn’t always been so easy. For three straight years, from 2005-2007, it took Tomlinson and his team four months to find anyone who even watched three quarters, and only one of them had watched the entire game. And though millions of people reportedly viewed the game this year (it drew a 5.6 overnight rating), it is still shaping up to represent a very similar struggle.
“The odds would suggest that someone out there sat through every minute of the game,” Tomlinson said. “But our research has yet to discover such a person. We’re very interested in finding this person and further studying him/her.”
As for those who were in attendance for the 2015 Pro Bowl at University of Phoenix Stadium, where this year’s Super Bowl will be held, Tomlinson’s research team continues to interview the 63,225 fans in attendance, but have to yet to find anyone who can recall anything that happened in the fourth quarter.