We have heard tons of clichés and we are well aware that Tampa quarterback Tom Brady is the Goat (Greatest Of All Time) as he makes final preparations for his 10th Super Bowl appearance.

We have also been inundated with how good Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes is.

If anybody years down the road has a chance to pass Brady’s records it is arguably Mahomes.

We have also been told on numerous times that Tampa is the first team in the 55-year history of the Super Bowl to enjoy home-field advantage (although with COVID-19 restrictions in place the number of fans in the stands will be limited to 25,000).

But enough is enough!

Can we just get on with THE GAME?

Super Bowl 55 kicks off on Sunday (3:30 p.m. PST) from Raymond James Stadium in Tampa Bay.

Whether one lives in Prince George, B.C. or Prince George’s County in the U.S. state of Maryland, or any other place, this four-hour spectacle (including the lengthy half-time show) has evolved into a North American tradition.

Indeed, this is a time when fans and non-fans alike will tune in and try to experience the excitement of the biggest extravaganza in North American sports.

There is one big difference this year though.

Instead of partying, eating pizza, chicken wings and other food, sitting in front of a large screen TV in big groups (which has become the norm) we are being asked to respect health orders and still enjoy the game but only inside our “bubble”.

“Hold off on the Super Bowl celebrations this year. You should not be planning, whether it’s at home or in a bar or restaurant, viewings of the Super Bowl,” Provincial health officer Dr Bonnie Henry said in a media briefing this week.

“If we are not able to control this (COVID-19) and start seeing spread again, we can undo all the good work that we have done. We need to respect (workplace) staff and not put them at risk. Stay small, stay apart, keeping everyone safe so that we can keep our bars, our restaurants, our retail spaces, our workplaces open,” added Henry.

Health Minister Adrian Dix added this message: “Many people have a Super Bowl or Grey Cup parties in their homes, and that is not on this year. This is the year to watch it with the people living in your household.”

According to “out of the ordinary Super Bowl facts”, in prior years, the average number of people at a Super Bowl party throughout North America is 17.

That number needs to come down dramatically, otherwise, there’s a strong possibility the virus will score a touchdown by spreading.

A new survey conducted on behalf of BC Hydro finds while almost half of British Columbians plan to watch the Super Bowl this year, more than three-quarters of viewers will be watching from home instead of gathering with family and friends because of COVID-19.

BC Hydro data shows it is the preparations for hosting – primarily cooking – that impacts electricity use the most on Super Bowl Sunday.

The most popular items on the home menu this year are:

Chicken wings (41 per cent)
Nachos (40 per cent)
Pizza (35 per cent)
Ribs (13 per cent)
Chili (10 per cent)

According to the survey, on Sunday, just 3 per cent will watch from a pub or restaurant, and about 6 per cent will watch from a friend or family member’s home which is obviously down significantly from previous years.

Getting back to the game, it is nearly impossible for this Kansas City-Tampa Bay match-up to live up to its advanced billing.

Double-digit outcomes have decided 32 of the 54 Super Bowls, including last year when the Chiefs came from behind the 4th quarter to beat the San Francisco 49’ers 31-20.

Kansas City is favoured by a field goal to beat Tampa, the same margin the Chiefs knocked off the Bucs when the two teams met during the regular season, 27-24 on November 29th. The Bucs have not lost since then but K.C. has not lost this season on the road.

The over/under is 56 at many establishments.

With two high powered offences, many bettors will likely take the over.

While I would like to see Brady, at age 43, capture a 7th Super Bowl, the smart pick would be to take the Chiefs, with K.C. to cover the three and win by six.

FROM THE QUOTE RACK:

The NFL announced that 25,000 fans will be allowed to attend the Super Bowl. Social distancing protocols will be in place after consultations with King Oscar Sardines.

*Contributor Bill Littlejohn of South Lake Tahoe, California

Fanatics, the “official e-commerce partner of NFL” says Tom Brady merchandise is now best-selling by an NFL player ever for a 2-week period between AFC/NFC championship & Super Bowl. Does it come with a senior discount?

*Comedy writer Janice Hough of Palo Alto, California www.leftcoastsportsbabe.com

The Toronto Blue Jays have signed ex-Houston Astros star George Springer. Apparently, Springer leaked the news of his signing by banging on the lid of a trash can.

*Blogger Patti Dawn Swansson (River City Renegade)

San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich announced on his 72nd birthday that he’d gotten a COVID-19 vaccine, telling AP: “Science wise, it’s a no-brainer.” In other words, good shot selection.

*Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times http://www.seattletimes.com/author/dwight-perry/


IN CASE, YOU MISSED IT

COVID shutdowns forced Cirque de Soleil to declare bankruptcy. There haven’t been so many clowns not working this side of the Jacksonville Jaguars.

*Canadian comedy writer RJ Currie www.Sportsdeke.com

Hartley Miller is the news and sports supervisor and morning news anchor for 94.3 the GOAT and Country 97.
He also is the 94.3 the Goat radio colour commentator for P.G. Cougars home games.
His column appears Fridays on myprincegeorgenow.com.
Send along a quote, note, or anecdote to hmiller@thegoatrocks.ca