WATCH: Pro Bowlers pay tribute to Kobe Bryant with sack celebration

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Sunday began with the football world preparing for an otherwise meaningless Pro Bowl in Orlando.

It continued with news that NBA great and sports legend Kobe Bryant passed away at the age of 41 following a helicopter accident in Southern California.

It goes without saying that the exhibition game in Florida took on even less significance. Those on hand paid tribute to Kobe, including New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees.

That also included the NFC’s defense displaying the utmost respect to Mr. Bryant by going with his patented step-back shot in celebration after a sack.

Kobe’s life, and in many ways his death, transcended the basketball world. He was (and remains) an icon in the sports world and around the United States.

Even those playing a different sport fully understood the importance of Kobe’s life and career to countless young people who grew up rooting for the NBA champion.

Those on the field in Orlando reminded us of this in a big way.