It’s once a year. It’s an excuse to sit around most of the day with your friends, gorging on whatever beer and grill food was on sale at Hy-Vee. There are the celebrities, the next batch of the year’s funniest commercials … oh yeah, and there’s the two ‘best’ teams of the year playing for the championship in America’s favorite spectator sport.
This year’s Super Bowl features an awesome matchup of ‘old school’ teams: the Green Bay Packers and the Pittsburgh Steelers. Rothlesburger and company owe Mark ‘Dirty’ Sanchez and the New York Jets taking the first half off versus the Steel for their shot at the title. Meanwhile, the Packers beat the Bears on their home field, which is barely playable in the winter months, putting it nicely. The Pack basically dominated the whole game, even with a two-score last gasp from the Bears that still left them a deficit seven points. If you didn’t catch the NFL Playoffs this year, you missed out on a great postseason that leaves us with one final, awesome matchup between two very talented teams led by two extremely talented quarterbacks.
The Packers and Steelers have a combined nine Super Bowl titles, making this a matchup between arguably the two best franchises in the NFL, although Dallas and San Francisco each have two Super Bowls on the Pack.
The Packers are good because of their passing game and a stout defensive front. The Pittsburgh defense is just as good, with safety Troy Polamalu and his forty-three inch vertical jump leading the way. Polamalu has been playing injured during the postseason, but you’d be hard-pressed to tell any difference. Honestly, I don’t know how any professional football player makes it through a season without two or three nagging injuries. Not that I feel bad — a team physician and multimillion dollar contract is a pretty swanky deal.
Both teams play 3-4 defenses — three defensive linemen and four linebackers. Ironically, Green Bay’s defensive coordinator was formerly employed by Pittsburgh, with formerly in this case meaning over 15 years ago. Pittsburgh also has a sex offender at QB, hence the nickname.
Ben Roethlisberger deserves every bit of crap people give him. He’s had brilliant moments on the field, but I’ll leave it up to you and a few Google searches to form an opinion about his off-the-clock pastimes
I think the only important thing I left out is that you’ll notice two distinctly long-haired men, but these aren’t glam rock pretty boys. The Packers have Linebacker Clay Matthews, whose hobbies include eating rocks when he’s not burying quarterbacks. The Steelers’ long-haired wonder is the aforementioned Troy Polamalu, who you’ll recognize from Head & Shoulders endorsements.
I can forgive watching the Super Bowl for the commercials — Football isn’t everyone’s thing, even if it should be. Commercials range from ‘suck’ to ‘awesome’ depending on the year. I don’t mind it, but when you have little kids barraged with scantily-clad women every commercial break, it’s awkward.
Food is probably the best part of the Super Bowl — and having another excuse to drink. I recommend nachos, pigs in a blanket, those cocktail sausages with some Cookies’ BBQ sauce and a good bowl of chili. If nothing else, having good food to soak up the alcohol is a great way to avoid the next day’s hangover.
Lastly, I’ve made no secret of my aversion to NFL Commentators. Hit the mute button, they don’t really say anything interesting anyway. When it comes down to it, this is still a four-quarter football game. To be honest, it’s overhyped — there’s a lot of yearly glitz and glam as of late trying to elevate the significance of this one football game second only to the apocalypse.
Everything else about the day? Awesome. You owe it to yourself and those around you to kick back and enjoy the show. After next Sunday, it’s another eight months until football season.