Orlando, Fla. will land an NFL preseason game in addition to the 2017 Pro Bowl, the league announced today.
The game is moving from Aloha Stadium, where it has been played for all but two years since 1980, to Orlando, the site of today’s press conference.
In addition to Hawaii, Houston and Sydney, Australia also bid on the game.
The Miami Dolphins and Atlanta Falcons will play their Aug. 25 game at Camping World Stadium, the site of the Pro Bowl, the NFL announced.
According to a source familiar with the deal, Orlando has the game for two years with an option for a third year. No terms were announced, but the two parties had been discussing a $2.5 million deal for the initial year.
In addition, the NFL said the annual all-star game will return to an NFC vs. AFC format after three years of having Hall of Fame players choosing up sides.
Pro Bowl practices will be held at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports Complex at the Disney World Resort in conjunction with youth football events, a fan festival, 5K race and parade.
“Collaborating with Disney and ESPN brings us closer to the best in youth and family-focused entertainment,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a release. “We look forward to working with the city of Orlando and Florida Citrus Sports to create a week-long celebration for football and our fans.”
“Our decision to move the Pro Bowl to a different location was not related to funding, Aloha Stadium or Hawai‘i’s ability to host the game,” Peter O’Reilly, the NFL’s senior vice president of events said in a joint release with the Hawaii Tourism Authority. “We value our partnership and look forward to continuing our community grants to nonprofits in Hawai‘i for the next three years and working with the State.”
The HTA said the $5-million fee budgeted to host the 2017 Pro Bowl, “will be used to support sports competitions, preserve Hawaiian culture and the environment, sponsor community festivals and events, and bolster tourism marketing in Hawai‘i’s largest markets (Mainland U.S. and Japan) and emerging markets.”