A viewer's guide to get you through Super Bowl Sunday
The Super Bowl between the Los Angeles Rams and Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California, will as usual be the biggest day of sports broadcasting in the United States. But this year might be the biggest of them all since this is the first time the country's biggest sporting event is happening at the same time as the Winter Olympics, one of the biggest events in the world.
Here are some things to know about the game as well as Super Bowl-related programming on other networks:
HOW MANY SUPER BOWLS IS THIS FOR THE RAMS AND BENGALS?
The Rams are making their fifth Super Bowl trip — including their second in the past four years — and are 1-3. This is the Bengals' third appearance but first since 1989. They lost to the San Francisco 49ers in their other trips.
WHICH NETWORK HAS THIS YEAR'S SUPER BOWL?
This marks the 20th Super Bowl broadcast for NBC, which is second among all networks. CBS leads with 21 followed by NBC, Fox (9) and ABC (7).
Of the seven previous Super Bowls held in Los Angeles, NBC has aired four, including the last one in 1993 when Dallas beat Buffalo. CBS and NBC both aired the first Super Bowl, which was at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
HOW DID NBC GET THIS YEAR'S GAME?
CBS originally had the game this year under the league's rotation between CBS, NBC and FOX, but NBC and CBS agreed in 2019 to trade spots. CBS carried last year's Super Bowl from Tampa instead of NBC. CBS didn't want to compete against the Olympics while NBC could market two major events to advertisers.
WHO ARE THE ANNOUNCERS FOR NBC?
Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth team up for their fourth Super Bowl. Michaels is handling the play by play for the 11th time, which ties him with the late Pat Summerall. This is Michaels' fifth Super Bowl for NBC after his first six were with ABC. Collinsworth, who played eight seasons for the Bengals and appeared in both of their previous Super Bowl trips, will be an analyst for the fifth time. His first was with Fox for the 2005 game between Philadelphia and New England.
Rules analyst Terry McAulay, who refereed three Super Bowls, and sideline reporter Kathryn Tappen are Super Bowl TV rookies. Sideline reporter Michele Tafoya is doing her fifth Super Bowl in what is her final appearance for NBC.
HOW MANY CAMERAS WILL NBC USE FOR THE SUPER BOWL?
NBC will use 122 cameras. For the first Super Bowl at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in 1967, NBC had 11 cameras.
Executive producer Fred Gaudelli said that “in terms of cameras that shoot the game, that actually shoot the field and the play and the players — we’ll probably have 40 cameras." All those cameras will be recorded and can be used for replay.
NBC will also be debuting a brand-new graphic look, a new score bug, as well as utilizing a lot of virtual reality and augmented reality graphics.
Gaudelli and director Drew Esocoff are working their seventh Super Bowl together and fifth on NBC. Their first two were with ABC.
THE OLYMPICS HOST IS ALSO DOING THE SUPER BOWL PREGAME SHOW?
Yes. Mike Tirico is doing double duty. He left Beijing on Monday night to fly to Stamford, Connecticut, to host Olympics coverage Wednesday and Thursday before going to Los Angeles on Friday through Sunday.
Tirico will host the Super Bowl pregame and postgame presentation of the Vince Lombardi Trophy before going to a set outside SoFi Stadium to host Sunday night's Olympics coverage.
WHAT ARE SOME NOTABLE FEATURES OF NBC'S PREGAME SHOW?
NBC News’ Lester Holt will sit down with President Joe Biden during the noon hour.
Key interviews, Chris Simms with Rams coach Sean McVay; Rodney Harrison with Rams DT and three-time Defensive Player of the Year Aaron Donald; Maria Taylor with Rams QB Matthew Stafford and his wife, Kelly; Tony Dungy with Bengals coach Zac Taylor; Drew Brees with Bengals QB Joe Burrow; Jac Collinsworth with Bengals DE Sam Hubbard.
Some key features: Untold History of the Super Bowl with Peter King; Snoop Youth Football; 1939 UCLA Football Team (Tim Layden narrates an essay on the historical importance of the 1939 UCLA football team, which included Jackie Robinson, Kenny Washington, and Woody Strode).
WHAT IF I ONLY WANT TO WATCH THE HALFTIME SHOW?
The first half of a normal NFL game usually takes 90 minutes, but if there are a lot of running plays, it could be done in 1 hour, 10 minutes.
With kickoff at 3:30 p.m. PST, it would probably be a good idea to tune in around 4:40 p.m. so you don't miss Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Eminem, Mary J. Blige, and Kendrick Lamar.
HOW CAN I WATCH THE GAME IF I AM A CORD CUTTER?
NBC's Peacock streaming service will have the game for OTT devices and services, smart TVs and mobile devices. It will also be available for free on the NFL website/apps as well as Yahoo Sports. DirecTV Stream, Sling TV, Hulu with Live TV, YouTube TV and fuboTV also have NBC.
WHO HAS THE SPANISH LANGUAGE BROADCAST?
Telemundo will be the first Spanish-language broadcast network to air the Super Bowl. The pregame show begins at 2 p.m. PST with Miguel Gurwitz, Ana Jurka, Karim Mendiburu and special guest Rolando Cantu, a former Arizona Cardinals offensive lineman. The game will be called by Carlos Mauricio Ramirez with Jorge Andres providing analysis.
WHAT DOES NFL NETWORK HAVE PLANNED?
NFL Network's 8.5 hour “NFL GameDay Morning” comes on at 6 a.m. PST.
IS ESPN DOING PREGAME COVERAGE?
ESPN's four-hour show comes on at 7 a.m. PST. It will include Burrow and Stafford's Journey, using interviews from the two quarterbacks, their parents and those close to them.
Former LSU coach Ed Orgeron, who won a national championship with Burrow in 2019, will do an interview from the ESPN set at Disneyland.
WILL THE GAME BE ON RADIO?
Sirius XM Satellite Radio will have four channels dedicated to the game — the Westwood One national feed, a Spanish-language channel and the Rams and Bengals broadcasts.
More AP Super Bowl coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/super-bowl and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL