Super Bowl week is upon us, football fans! On Feb. 7, the Kansas City Chiefs and Tampa Bay Buccaneers will face off in Super Bowl LV, and there will be plenty for fans to take in during the days leading up to the big game.
Normally, Super Bowl week includes events like Super Bowl Opening Night—previously known as Media Day—fan experiences and the Pro Bowl. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, however, many of this year's events will be held virtually.
The 2021 edition of Opening Night will be held via Zoom, with the Buccaneers and Chiefs each making nine players available instead of the entire roster.
The NFL did open its Super Bowl Experience along the Tampa Riverwalk with limited capacity and has opened other free events at nearby Curtis Hixon Park.
"It's beautiful," Buccaneers fan Christian Allen said, per Justin Schecker of WFLA 8 News. "Tampa has done a great job. We just commented while we were in line how beautiful, how everybody is spread out. The workers, everyone has done a great job."
The Pro Bowl, of course, will be played on Madden 21 and broadcast on Twitter:
For fans hoping to see the interviews on Opening Night, they will be able to watch live on NFL Network.
2021 Super Bowl Opening Night
Date: Monday, February 1
Time: 8 p.m. ET
TV: NFL Network
Obviously, COVID-19 protocols are partially responsible for Opening Night being a virtual event. Another reason is that the Chiefs aren't expected to arrive in Tampa until Friday or Saturday, according to Nate Davis of USA Today.
Presumably, players appearing on the NFL Network broadcast will include stars from this year's Super Bowl participants, including quarterbacks Patrick Mahomes and Tom Brady.
"This season, in the interest of health and safety for all involved, Super Bowl Opening Night will be conducted virtually from the participating teams' home cities," the NFL said in a news release. "Nine players from each participating team, alongside their head coach will take part in virtual Opening Night festivities."
Coaches Andy Reid and Bruce Arians will likely get the typical pregame questions, with topics ranging from preparation and game-planning to injuries.
For Kansas City, injuries could be an intriguing topic, as starting tackles Mitchell Schwartz and Eric Fisher are both expected to miss the game.
For Brady and Mahomes, the questions may be a bit more specific. This will be a historic game for both quarterbacks. Mahomes has played three seasons as a full-time starter and already has a regular-season MVP and a Super Bowl MVP on his resume. Brady will be playing in a record 10th Super Bowl and his first with a new franchise.
Fans hoping to catch all the interview action should tune in to NFL Network on Monday.