Molecular simulation is a valuable and complementary tool that may assist with the interpretation of single-molecule Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) experiments, if the energy function is of sufficiently high quality. Here we present force-field parameters for one of the most common pairs of chromophores used in experiments, AlexaFluor 488 and 594. From microsecond molecular-dynamics simulations, we are able to recover both experimentally determined equilibrium constants and association/dissociation rates of the chromophores with free tryptophan, as well as the decay of fluorescence anisotropy of a labeled protein. We find that it is particularly important to obtain a correct balance of solute-water interactions in the simulations in order to faithfully capture the experimental anisotropy decays, which provide a sensitive benchmark for fluorophore mobility. Lastly, by a combination of experiment and simulation, we address a potential complication in the interpretation of experiments on polyproline, used as a molecular ruler for FRET experiments, namely the potential association of one of the chromophores with the polyproline helix. Under conditions where simulations accurately capture the fluorescence anisotropy decay, we find at most a modest, transient population of conformations in which the chromophores associate with the polyproline. Explicit calculation of FRET transfer efficiencies for short polyprolines yields results in good agreement with experiment. These results illustrate the potential power of a combination of molecular simulation and experiment in quantifying biomolecular dynamics.