The usual extravagance that surrounds the Super Bowl clearly won’t be the same this year, during a pandemic. The stadium will only be one-third full, and Tampa won’t be jubilant like other NFL circus host cities in the past. The high mass in American football will be clearly different, but more necessary than ever before.
At this difficult start of 2021, it is comforting to cling to a bit of normality. Even if all the festivities surrounding the Super Bowl will be greatly reduced, the NFL took the bet to go to the end of its season and won.
A very different Super Bowl
This Super Bowl will not be the one that begins with the traditional and disjointed media night. No crowded parterre of curious people who improvise journalists by competing with tricks to ask questions even more absurd than their accoutrements.
It will not be the one where more than 5,000 journalists from around the world swarm on the scene to chase players and coaches all week in search of a good story. Make way for the new world of group videoconferences, more beige and dull!
This Super Bowl will not be one of the typical VIP parties, throughout the week, which make the stars and those who stick to it run.
This Super Bowl will not be that of 65,000 spectators crammed into a stadium. The crowd will instead be reduced to 22,000 people, masked and left behind, including 7,500 health workers vaccinated. For the first time since the very first Super Bowl, the stadium will not be filled to capacity.
At home, this Super Bowl will obviously not be the one where chicken wings and other food are eaten in large groups glued and glued on the sofa, in front of the television. And speaking of television, for the first time in years, giants including Budweiser and Coke will not be part of the commercials waltz. A very different Super Bowl, we tell you …
Not a bad thing
Obviously, all these changes affect the festive and disproportionate side that normally characterizes the Super Bowl. A return to normal is desirable as soon as possible. Many people usually find the Super Bowl too rowdy, imposing and excessive, but let’s face it, that’s part of its charm too!
Except that at this very special time, there is nothing wrong with the spectacle surrounding the presentation of the Super Bowl being on a reduced scale.
Just a few months ago, many seemed convinced that the NFL could not start its season as usual let alone end it with the presentation of the ultimate game. In itself, it is a resounding success to keep sports enthusiasts as close to normal as possible.
What if, in the end, Super Bowl 55 became the ideal opportunity to refocus on what the event should be at the base, a great sports match? The flourishes around the duel are good, but the duel as such is better. All the attention paid to those who really deserve it, the players and coaches who have been competing in sacrifices for months.
To my dismay, for the first time since the 2010 season, I will not be there to cover this tradition that is dear to me. There will still be stories to tell you in these pages throughout the week.
On the other hand, to my great pleasure, it is with the small family that the clash between Chiefs and Buccaneers will be consumed, for a rare time.
I would have liked to be there, but the company of relatives will be nicer than that of the representatives of the Korea Daily News or Mexico Times.
I can only wish you so much! In these special times, after all, a Corona is better than a virus.
Little pinch anyway, dear readers, because it would normally be my 10th Super Bowl appearance. No problem, I have the rest of my life to catch up with Tom Brady …
Keep smiling and have a good game!
DID YOU KNOW THAT…
Buccaneers, Tampa bay
Tom Brady claims 33 playoff wins to date. That’s more than 28 franchises in their entire NFL history.
Leonard Fournette became the only carrier after Arian Foster, Franco Harris and Marcus Allen to rack up more than 350 rushing yards, five rushing touchdowns and one receiving touchdown in his first five playoff games.
The Buccaneers have scored 41 points in the playoffs following forced turnovers from their defense. This is the third highest total in playoff history and there is still one game to go.
Chiefs, Kansas city
Patrick Mahomes has joined Tom Brady, Kurt Warner and Russell Wilson as the only quarterbacks who have appeared in the Super Bowl twice in their first four seasons.
In the Andy Reid and Patrick Mahomes era, it’s only happened eight times in 46 games that the Chiefs have scored less than 25 points in a game.
Tyreek Hill has claimed 25 touchdowns over 30 yards since 2016. During that time, no other player has more than 15 over that distance.
Difficult to wait until next Sunday, knowing that the Chiefs and Buccaneers will draw a line on a single season during Super Bowl 55. This match is of course captivating for the symbolism of the two quarterbacks in opposition. The rich history of Tom Brady versus the present and the future that Patrick Mahomes is writing. Is it time to hand over the torch? Several battles will be decisive to arrive at the crowning of one or the other. It is a question of properly launching the daily coverage that you will be offering The newspaper all week long, here are five duels to watch out for.
It will be fascinating to watch Chiefs defensive handyman and marauder Tyrann Mathieu. Of course, Tom Brady has seen others during his illustrious career, but Mathieu has the innate gift of being glued to the ball. The Chiefs will no doubt want to deploy him closer to the line of scrimmage to cover the midfield. Brady will have to guess if Mathieu will attack him on blitzes or if he will retire on cover. He is clearly the most versatile and dangerous player in the Chiefs’ tertiary, with his six interceptions this season.
Patrick Mahomes’ magic often comes when he manages to escape from his pocket to extend play and spot a catcher when the opposing cover inevitably breaks down. Except that with quarterback hunters like Shaquil Barrett and Jason Pierre-Paul on the other side, he may have to get rid of the ball hastily. Especially since left tackle Eric Fisher will be sidelined, as will his friend on the right Mitchell Schwartz. This is a huge question mark for the Chiefs attack.
The Chiefs’ tertiary had one of its best games last week against the Bills wide receivers and the challenge is even greater against the Buccaneers, who have five wide-spread ends capable of making big plays in Mike Evans. , Chris Godwin, Antonio Brown, Scotty Miller and Tyler Johnson. Godwin has exploded in the present playoffs with 223 yards and he has been targeted 28 times by Tom Brady. He is the Bucs receiver who is most able to turn a harmless pass into a long gain. Charvarius Ward is one of the Chiefs cornerbacks doing a good job, without recognition.
The Chiefs rookie running back was hardly used in the conference finals, but with a week off between that game and the Super Bowl, he should be able to run at full capacity. The Buccaneers are one of the best teams on the Tour to curb ground play, but they may not fill the box in order to respond to the Chiefs’ air attack. If so, linebacker Devin White will have to track Edwards-Helaire, both on the ground and when he leaves the backfield to catch a pass.
On the one hand, the greatest offensive strategist of his time in Andy Reid, at the helm of an attack that has all the toys imaginable. On the other side is defensive coordinator Todd Bowles, master of confusion, who rarely uses the same fronts and covers. It’s a game of chess that promises! Reid deserves all the recognition he finally gets, but Bowles could get him in trouble. His cornerbacks are physical and his defense causes turnaround over turnaround. The Chiefs usually protect the ball well and their speed is a threat on every play.
Natasha Kumar has been a reporter on the news desk since 2018. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Times Hub, Natasha Kumar worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my email@example.com 1-800-268-7116