The NFL likes to play with the rules of the Pro Bowl, in an effort to make the game a little more exciting (read: watchable), while trying to keep the players safe. This has included things like no or limited blitzing, no rush on extra point attempts, and things like that. The 2015 Pro Bowl will have its own unique set of rules, and some of them are going to confuse fans watching.
Kickoffs - There will not be any. Instead of kickoffs, where players are flying down the field and running into each other in huge collisions, the start of each quarter and after each score, the ball will simply be placed at the team's own 25-yard line.
Change of possession each quarter - As it was last year, poessession will change at the end of each quarter. The idea is that teams that get the ball with little time remaining in the first quarter will have to try to score quickly, making multiple "two-minute offense" situations during each half. How long until a quarterback, with just a couple of seconds remaining on the clock, throws an interception on purpose, so his offense keeps the ball when the quarter changes?
Time - The clock will drive some people crazy, as it will not follow normal NFL rules. Incomplete passes will only stop the clock until the referee signals the ball is ready (think first downs in college football). The rule will revert back to normal, where an incomplete pass stops the clock until the next snap, inside of two minutes remaining in the first half and five minutes remaining in the second half. There will also be a two-minute warning in each quarter, after which, any play in which the offense does not gain at least one-yard will stop the clock. The NFL is attempting to keep the offenses trying to score, so kneeling on the ball or a plunge into the line for no gain will not kill the clock. Also, sacks will not stop the clock, unless it is inside the last two minutes of the game.
Play Clock – Instead of the normal 40-second and 25-second play clocks, the Pro Bowl will use a 35-/25-second version, trying to speed up the offenses and get the snap counts up.
Timeouts - Teams will be given two timeouts per quarter, rather than the three per half usually used. One timeout from the first-quarter can be carried over to the second-quarter, and the same can happen from the third-quarter to the fourth-quarter.
Goal posts - The goal posts for the game will be narrowed, from 18-feet, 6-inches wide to 14-feet wide, making extra points and field goals more difficult, which could lead to more fourth-down attempts rather than settling for the three-point try.
Extra Points - As it did during the first weeks of the preseason, the league will move the extra point back to the 15-yard line during the Pro Bowl, making the kick longer (around 33.5 yards now), and, in the Pro Bowl's case, into narrower goal posts.
Defenses - In the past, Pro Bowl defenses were only allowed to play man coverage schemes. Now, teams can also play a cover two scheme, as well as press defense.
MVPs – In what appears to be a nod to the fact that any "MVP" award in football usually means "best quarterback" and almost exclusively means "best offensive player," the league will now name one offensive player and one defensive player for the MVP award, as voted upon by the media.
Everyone got it? Good, because I am sure all of us will be confused by something we see on Sunday.