The NFL’s annual exercise in irrelevant football got a dousing of rain on Sunday to add to the chaos of the meaningless Pro Bowl.
It also got a fitting capper when the game’s trophy broke into two pieces as ESPN announcer Jason Witten presented it to Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes and New York Jets safety Jamal Adams, who were named MVPs of the AFC’s 26-7 win over the NFC.
Mahomes threw for 156 yards and a touchdown on 7-of-14 passing to earn offensive MVP honors while Adams picked up an interception in addition to his lone tackle to earn defensive MVP honors.
In a game that looked more like backyard two-hand touch than professional football, officials blew plays dead before tackles, defensive and offensive players switched sides, and Pro Bowl caliber players didn’t look like it on the field.
The AFC threatened to pitch a shutout for the first time in the game’s history, leading 20-0 in the fourth quarter.
Dak to Amari not what it was with Cowboys
The NFC looked to break the shutout in spectacular fashion on a connection between a pair of Dallas Cowboys stars. But Dak Prescott’s perfect downfield pass to Amari Cooper bounced off his helmet as he approached the goal line on the 48-yard pass attempt.
The connection the duo built to lead Dallas’ late-season surge to the playoffs wasn’t quite there on Sunday.
But the NFC eventually got on the board with a Prescott pass to Atlanta Falcons tight end Austin Hooper to avoid the dubious distinction.
The game’s waning moments saw players switching from offense to defense and defense to offense, as New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley eventually ended up with the ball after Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans intercepted Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson on a chaotic, lateral-filled play.
But the AFC got the last laugh on that front when Jacksonville Jaguars safety Jalen Ramsey caught a touchdown from Watson in the game’s waning moments.
The game wasn’t without its scares as Pittsburgh Steelers receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster and Los Angeles Chargers receiver Keenan Allen both left the game with knee injuries suffered on the rain-soaked filled.
It appears both escaped serious injuries as they were each diagnosed with knee contusions.