*William Henderson had a great week in Hawaii, even if his NFC squad fell short in the Pro Bowl with a 38-27 loss to the AFC.
The fullback, in the first Pro Bowl of his 10-year career, and the rest of the Packers in the game - Ahman Green, Marco Rivera, and Javon Walker - all contributed to the cause, but came up just short.
As always, Henderson made his presence felt on special teams, making two tackles and forcing a fumble in punt coverage. Green added a special teams tackle of his own and ran for 25 yards. Walker caught four passes, and Rivera helped block for 155 rushing yards by the NFC running backs, but it wasn't enough for the NFC All-Stars to match the AFC's firepower.
Back on the mainland (and still very tired from the travel), Henderson checked in with Packers.com for one last Pro Bowl Diary entry.*
Pro Bowl Diary, Part IV - February 15, 2005
I wasn't extremely happy with the outcome because we didn't win the game. That's probably the only negative about the whole Pro Bowl experience for me. I was upset we didn't win because I want to win every time I step on the football field, but it was still a great thing to be a part of.
At the end of the game, it was kind of just like a big party atmosphere. I was happy because it was a great experience. Everyone went back to the hotel and had a big luau. There was lots of good food, a great atmosphere, and a great way to end a great week in Hawaii.
There were a couple of plays from the game that stick out in my mind. Forcing a fumble in punt coverage is something that's going to definitely be a positive memory in my mind, as well as making another tackle in kickoff coverage.
The forced fumble was really a play of continuous hustle for me, getting downfield and not giving up on the play. I was kind of boxed outside, but I still came in and got a shot on Nate Clements and knocked the ball out. If I hadn't hit him, he probably would have been tackled pretty quickly but the ball wouldn't have been jarred out like it was.
Another special teams play that sticks out - which wasn't so positive - was our miscue on the attempted onside kick. It turns out that it was the first kickoff return for a touchdown in Pro Bowl history and it came against my side. Tiki Barber and I miscued on where we should be on the play and Hines Ward made a great play and snatched the ball and took it in for a touchdown.
I thought my blocking in the game was one of the better games I had this season as far as working in a make-shift offense and just doing some positive things.
A lot of people called me after the game saying I should have gotten a touchdown in the fourth quarter, but I can't complain about anything Michael Vick did on that play or any other play. I was wide open in the end zone as he was running to his left, but he decided to not risk a throw and use his athletic ability to run it in for the touchdown.
He got to the end zone but in the process took a hit from Ed Reed he wouldn't have had to take if he had thrown the ball. At the same time, he was just making sure that the NFC got the six points and he's got the ability to do just about anything on the football field and he showed that again on that play.
I was really proud of the performance the rest of the Packers gave in the game on Sunday. I was impressed with Ahman and Javon's work on special teams, and Ahman even got the chance to make a tackle. Those two aren't called on to cover kicks in Green Bay, but they have played special teams before, and it showed in the game.
Ahman was so excited when we talked about it after the game. He said, "Will, I got a tackle." You just know he was having a lot of fun out there, and the tackle he made was one of the better ones from the game.
Ahman didn't get to play as much tailback as I hoped that he would, just because I love blocking for him and we always know what each other is going to do. That's one of the great things about the Pro Bowl though - you get to work with talented guys from around the league that you usually would never get a chance to work with.
I thought I did a pretty good job in blocking for the other tailbacks, Tiki Barber of the New York Giants and Brian Westbrook of the Philadelphia Eagles. It was different blocking for those guys because Ahman and I have developed such a good relationship over the past five years together.
I thought Tiki and Westbrook both did a great job of reading my blocks and the blocks of the offensive line. It shows how great those guys are because they picked up on the offense so quickly. I'm sure if we had a little more practice time together, we could have broken some more big plays and worked together a little bit better.
I told everyone after the game that this whole week gave me more confidence and more desire to get back to another Pro Bowl in the future. Working with mostly younger guys - I was kind of a dinosaur compared with some of the young players in the game - I still thought I played well and assured myself that I can continue to compete with them and make it back to Hawaii next year.