Last season, the Cleveland Browns saw Joel Bitonio rise to the occasion when it came time to show off his skills during the Pro Bowl. The massive left guard showed off incredibly soft hands when catching water balloons and he mastered the Jugs machine. He then fielded punts one-handed which had some of us wondering if he needed snaps at tight end.
This year, it Denzel Ward who had a chance to wow the crowd during the skills competition — which isn't how it went down. Ward took place in the "high stakes" challenge which is when you start with two footballs in your arms and then field punts. Ward was unable to haul in the very first one.
Obviously, this means nothing in the grand scheme of things since the challenge has nothing at all to do with legitimate NFL skills. Instead, it's all for fun and Ward had a little fun at his own expense following the short outing. He tweeted a picture of himself not watching the ball, just before dropping it, and said he might have been checking to make sure his mom was watching him compete.
Ward is now a three-time Pro Bowler who had a fantastic 2023 campaign. There's an argument to be made that he should have been joined by Martin Emerson, who was on fire all year, but at least Ward got the recognition he deserved for being one of the best in the game this year.
Browns Pro Bowlers having fun showing off their skills
While Denzel Ward is making fun of himself for the drop, David Njoku is out there competing for the best catch. He and Puka Nakua of the Los Angeles Rams have taken their game to the water as they compete for the most impressive trick reception.
They each get three attempts to pull off the most ridiculous grab which included Njoku hauling in a pass while doing a back flip into the water. Again, none of this matters in an actual game but it's fun to watch the players let loose and remind us all just how crazy they are athletically.