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Broncos have a ball at the Pro Bowl

The AFC didn’t win, but our Denver Broncos Pro Bowlers had a winning time.

NFL: Pro Bowl Media & Practice Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

You don’t watch the Pro Bowl with desperate hopes of your conference winning; you watch it for fun, and you watch it to appreciate some of your favorite players in a nice wind-down week before the Super Bowl.

Of course, I say that because the AFC lost.

Pride aside, it was a lot of fun. The Pro Bowl trio — consisting of Denver Broncos safety Justin Simmons, cornerback Patrick Surtain II, and wide receiver Marvin Mims, Jr. — competed in the Thursday Skills Showdown before gracing the field for flag football on Sunday, where PS2 scored a beautiful pick-sick on one of Geno Smith’s throws.

It was also pretty hilarious and adorable to see Peyton Manning’s young son Marshall assuring his uncle that the “refs won the game” for the NFC. Omaha Productions (Peyton’s entertainment company) shared the moment on their Twitter.

Maybe it’s just me, but it’s hard to not get the warm and fuzzies watching the Mannings.

And speaking of Peyton, he obviously spent some time with our Pro Bowler trio — safety Justin Simmons, cornerback Patrick Surtain II, and receiver Marvin Mims, Jr — and spoke on being geared up for Denver’s near future.

“I’m very excited about Sean Payton and what he brings and his experience. Obviously, it’s an extremely tough division,” Manning said, noting the domination of the Chiefs in the AFC West, as well as the fact that the Raiders and Chargers have new coaches, “So we have to go get it. Nobody’s coming back to us. Sean knows that, and he’s going make that the focus all offseason.”

“I’m excited for the Broncos’ future,” he said.

I can see across the fanbase that the rest of us are excited about the future, too, even if cautiously so. We have a roster that’s shaping up to be a solid one, with a well-tenured Super Bowl-winning coach at the helm.

Taking all of this into consideration while watching this year’s Pro Bowl Games actually reminded me of the hope that next year, we could be preparing for a high-stakes postseason game instead of just the player showcase game. In the meantime, we enjoy the fun we’re having right now (I know our Pro Bowlers did — you should see their pictures from Walt Disney World!), and we wait to watch next year unfold.

Congratulations to Justin Simmons, Pat Surtain, and Marvin Mims for their 2024 Pro Bowl appearances! The honor was a well-deserved one for all three, and I have no doubt that there are more to come for each of them.