A Few Thoughts on the Super Bowl

Congratulations to the New Orleans Saints and Drew Brees for their Super Bowl win last night. They were the better team and came up with the huge defensive play to ice the game with the Colts driving to tie the game late in the fourth. The key to the game was keeping Peyton Manning off the field. Yes, Manning had the crucial interception, but up until that point he was awesome when on the field. The Saints found a way to maintain drives and controlled the time of possession to limit Manning’s opportunities.

Even though the Saints were held to a field goal at the end of the first half, they kept the score close and had the balls to go for the onside kick to open the second. Momentum swung and kept Manning on the sidelines. I was wrong. I thought Manning would dominate and lead his team to victory. Instead, he’s now 9-9 career in the playoffs and seen by some to have taken a step backwards. I disagree. Manning is one of the greats who already has one ring. He will have more chances. One game shouldn’t define a players career. The vaunted and speedy Colts D is to blame just as much as Manning.

So we can all agree that the Saints winning is a great story and a nice morale boost for the city that is still struggling four years after Katrina. But listening to everyone on TV last night (and for presumably for the rest of the month) gush about how this gives hope and inspiration to New Orleans made it seem like the Saints’ victory resolved all the problems in New Orleans. Yes, it’s a great media story, but there were problems in New Orleans before Katrina, there was destruction in the aftermath of the storm, and their will continue to be problems long after the victory/mardi gras parade is over. Winning the Super Bowl doesn’t magically turn a city around. That’s done with money, manpower and politics. So while this win is a detour into happiness, there’s still plenty of real work to be done outside of football.

The Commercials

I thought all the commercials pretty much sucked. If I had to pick one to watch more than once, it would be the auto-tuned Bud Light spot. It was pretty much this generations’ version of the “Wassssup” ads. It think it might have been stronger without T-Pain at the end, but I guess you kind of need the cameo for the lay person to get the humor. But I was thinking, if you’re a huge company like Budweiser or Dorritos, why would you spend the millions of dollars on Super Bowl ads in the first place? For huge business’ I don’t think the point is to even sell your product anymore. People who drink Bud Light are pretty set in their beverage choice. You don’t hear many people saying “I usually drink Sam Adams, but I loved that commercial so I’m switching to Bud.” I feel like the intention of advertising has shifted in the recent years from trying to sell a product, to simply trying generate buzz around your product by appearing to be hip, edgy and funny (Emerald Nuts and Pop Secret?). Maybe someone with a marketing degree can comment.

As for the much hyped pro-life Tim Tebow ad, I didn’t see the big deal. I was more offended by the poor quality of the commercial than the content. Why would he sack his own Mom? The awkward smiling at the camera? It almost looked like an SNL parody skit. The commercial itself was harmless. Who knows what’s on the Focus on the Family website, but I really don’t care. Can we all just move on now?

The Who at Halftime

Have we finally run out of old and safe bands for the halftime show? Janet’s wardrobe malfunction was six years ago. I think we’ve learned our lesson. If the Super Bowl wants to continue to make the halftime show worth watching they need to have Jay-Z and Rihanna/Beyonce do next year’s show. I can’t think of any other re-tread bands that anyone would want to sit through. I mean who’s left, Fleetwood Mac? The Eagles? Stevie Wonder (AGAIN!)?

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