The Super Bowl is happening on Sunday, February 3 (kick-off 6:30pm EST). If you don’t follow football, but want to add to the conversation around the guacamole bowl, here are some talking points for the big game between the New England Patriots and the Los Angeles Rams.
Disclaimer: Some of the below may sound remedial to you. But some of you (and many of us, too) only pay attention to “sportsball!” once a year, so please forgive us for “fansplaining.” Don’t worry if you don’t have a preferred team—we’ll let you know who to root for at the end.
RECOMMENDED: Full guide to the Super Bowl 2019 in NYC
Greg the Leg. The Rams’ kicker Greg Zuerlein is nicknamed “Greg the Leg” because he has incredible range. He is one of only two kickers in NFL history to make two field goals from over 60 yards out. His alternate nickname, “Legatron,” is also pretty baller.
What to say: (Once the Rams’ offense gets past the 50 yard line.) “Greg the Leg could be good from here.”
The Goat. For years the word “goat” in sports talk meant “scapegoat.” Specifically, when the owner of Chicago’s Billy Goat Tavern brought his pet goat to a Cubs game in 1945. He and the goat were asked to leave, and “The Curse of the Billy Goat” lived on until the Cubs finally won a World Series in 2016. You will hear the word “goat” floating around your party (and see the goat emoji used all over social media) while Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is playing in his ninth Super Bowl (a record). That is why many claim he is the “greatest of all time” (G.O.A.T.).
What to say: “While there is still a debate over Michael Jordan vs LeBron James, the NFL now certainly has its goat with Tom Brady.”
Tony Romo. If you are reading this, chances are that when you hear that name you are thinking of the guy who once had a fling with Jessica Simpson or Carrie Underwood. Those two relationships may have been his greatest accomplishments. (He was a fine quarterback for the Cowboys, but nobody would call him the G.O.A.T. for his on-field performance.) However, the man has set the broadcasting world ablaze this year. This is his first year as a color commentator, and he has been sublime. He even predicted plays with incredible accuracy before the snap. If you are trying to learn what is happening in the game, listen for his voice.
What to say: Just repeat things he says or when he is done talking say, “Yeah, that would make sense in this *package.”
*package means the types of players the coach decided to put on the field
Youth vs Experience. The Rams’ coach Sean McVay just turned 33 years-old. The team’s quarterback, Jared Goff, is 24. The Patriots’ coach Bill Belichick is 66 and Brady is 41. There’s always a buzz that this will be either or both Belichick (ahh, pronounced “Bell-a-check”) and Brady’s last game before retiring.
What to say: “After the Patriots had to trade Jimmy Garoppolo—the heir to Brady’s position—last season, I don’t see either Belichick or Brady retiring until there is a contingency to their legacy in place.”
Gronk. Since the big man puts his body on the line (and has been beat-up) over the years, this is probably it for the 29-year-old, super-bro-ey bro. To put that into perspective, the tight end who lined up against the Patriots in the Divisional Round of the playoffs, Antonio Gate, is 38 years-old and is planning on returning next season.
What to say: “I can’t wait until Gronk signs on to be a pro wrestler with the WWE next year.”
Goodell is a clown. Roger Goodell is the commissioner of the NFL and widely hated as he supports the rich owners well above the players and fans’ interests (sort of reminiscent of a particular president of a major country caring about the 1%, no?). Whether you’re watching with Rams fans, Pats supporters or mixed company, the best way to get everybody on your side (unless you happen to be watching with an NFL owner) is to bash Goodell.
What to say: “What a cuck.”
“Girly.” You’ll hear that word thrown around, but it’s not what it sounds like. They are talking about the Rams’ running back Todd Gurley, who is one of the best in the game.
What to say: “Thinking back on the old Saturday Night Live ‘girly man’ taunts from Hanz and Franz, did they know that was problematic?”
Prop Bets. You don’t need to know anything about the game to make a prop bet. These are nifty little things to put a dollar on against someone else at your watch party.
Coin toss. 50/50 heads or tails. “The three times the Patriots won the toss they called heads.”
Total Donald Trump Tweets during the game. Over 6/Under 6 “Over, Trump was not allowed to buy into the NFL years ago and still holds a grudge.”
What color liquid will be poured on the winning coach. Various, best odds: Clear. “I’ll take blue Gatorade, both teams have blue in their uniforms.”
Will Adam Levine be wearing a hat when he begins the halftime show? Yes +200 on a $100 bet. “Sunday evening rain is falling...the man loves brims.”
Will Billy McFarland be caught selling counterfeit Super Bowl tickets? Yes +2500 on a $100 bet. “His jailmate The Situation will be the patsy.”
Who to root for in the Super Bowl.
The Patriots. If you are from the following places: New England, St. Louis, New Orleans, or if you respect greatness. If you are a New Englander, congratulations the Earth is 4.5 billion years old and you happen to be alive during a time when you are represented by one of the most dynastic franchises in the history of sport (second only to the Spartans in the original Olympics). If you are from St. Louis, then you had your heart ripped out when the Rams moved from your city to sunny (or you would say “fake” Los Angeles?). You are a bitter divorcee. If you are from Nawlins, then you are even more bitter as a bogus call put the Rams into the Super Bowl instead of your beloved Saints. If you are from the New York area and you are a Yankees fan, then we’re sure you hate Boston but...but...the Patriots are kind of the Yankees of the NFL. Damn all the haters (and there are a lot), the organizations are winners.
The Rams. If you are from anywhere not listed above, are from the New York area and are a Jets fan (then you really hate the Patriots), prefer upstarts and underdogs, are into guys with a tight beard or just like the cool Rams helmet with the horns, then LA is your squadron. Now, if none of that sways you, and your significant other/fuck buddy has a conviction toward either team, go with their pick, for sports fandom can be sexually transmitted.
Team Ruff. If your entire party is bored of football and has switched to the Puppy Bowl, then take a look at the adorable terrier Savannah. How cute?!
Team pigs in a blanket: Honestly, the only reason you’re attending the Super Bowl party is for the food and drinks, hope your host pulls them out of the oven.