Bills QB Josh Allen officially opted out of the Pro Bowl on Monday, citing an elbow injury, but he won’t be rehabbing this weekend. Instead, Allen is part of the celebrity lineup at the Pebble Beach Pro-Am golf event.
Allen did suffer an elbow injury during the regular season, but he played through it without missing a game and led the Bills to a 13-3 season.
It’s not uncommon for players to use an obscure injury as an excuse to avoid the Pro Bowl — Joe Burrow isn’t participating for vague reasons as well — but Allen skipping the events to play golf is a poor start for the NFL’s reimagined Pro Bowl weekend.
Josh Allen is an absolute King for playing in the Pebble Beach Pro-Am instead of the Pro Bowl. Be more like Josh Allen.
— Eddie Radosevich (@Eddie_Rado) January 31, 2023
Fans criticized the decision to replace Allen with Ravens QB Tyler Huntley, who threw only two touchdown passes while filling in for Lamar Jackson late in the regular season.
MORE: Tyler Huntley’s Pro Bowl nod has NFL world calling for cancellation of event: ‘Time to be done with the Pro Bowl’
At this rate, the Pebble Beach Pro-Am might have bigger NFL names than the Pro Bowl itself. Allen will be joined by Aaron Rodgers, Larry Fitzgerald, Alex Smith, Steve Young, and Ron Rivera in California.
Allen is no stranger to golf. He competed at Pebble Beach last year, and he played alongside Patrick Mahomes against Rodgers and Tom Brady in last year’s edition of “The Match.”
As the Pro Bowl declines in popularity, pending the success of the NFL’s reconfigured slate of events this year, it might take a Super Bowl run to make Allen say no to Pebble Beach going forward. Can you blame him?