No world event builds hype like the Super Bowl. The average NFL nationally televised game brings in 10-15 million viewers; the Super Bowl attracts around 100 million.
In the two weeks leading up to the game, the media feels obligated to bring the 80-85 non-football fans up to speed on all that’s been happening with the two final teams. Those of us who have followed the NFL all season will hear more Cardinals and Steelers stories repeated these next two weeks than we could have ever imagined.
Here are the 10 that will soon drive us absolutely crazy.
1. Underdog Story!
1947. 1947. 1947. 1947. 1947. The last time the Cardinals organization won a title. Nobody—nobody—expected the Cardinals to be here. And here they are, facing one of football’s most hallowed franchises, the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The reality is that the Cardinals have never won anything because they’ve been a God-awful franchise. The Steelers have won throughout history because they’ve been a model franchise. But America won’t appreciate this. Instead, casual observers will root for the Cardinals because they’ll see it as a case of the little guy trying to overtake the big bully.
2. Kurt Warner
Football experts will pound his new Hall of Fame campaign into the ground. Okay, that’s fair. It’s an interesting debate (except nobody is going to argue on the anti-Warner side all week).
But the non-football experts are going to rehash the Kurt Warner rags-to-riches story that we all grew tired of eight years ago. You know, the grocery store bagger turned Arena League star turned unknown backup turned savior in St. Louis turned goat turned backup in New York turned unexpected starter in Arizona turned savior again. That story.
3. Larry Fitzgerald
He’s known as the best receiver in football right now—and probably rightfully so. But come February, he’ll be known as the best human being since Jesus Christ. Get ready for hearing about how Fitzgerald’s dad is a sportswriter and how Fitzgerald was a ball boy for the Minnesota Vikings during his early teenage years.
Also, more than a few people will remind us that Fitzgerald has already broken Jerry Rice’s playoff receiving record and that, unlike most receivers, he doesn’t try to hog the spotlight and demand the ball.
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