x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 24 January 2018

Super Bowl build up brewing a storm

Between now and kick off, a gazillion words will be written, spoken and transmitted by media about the season's last NFL game. Mike Tierney's guide to the story themes that will dominate.

FILE - In this Dec. 23, 2012 file photo, Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh yells from the sideline in the first half of an NFL football game against the New York Giants in Baltimore. The Harbaughs, San Francisco's Jim and Baltimore's John, will be the first pair of brothers to coach against each other in the NFL title game. (AP Photo/Nick Wass, FIle) *** Local Caption *** Super Bowl Lookahead Football.JPEG-0d65b.jpg
FILE - In this Dec. 23, 2012 file photo, Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh yells from the sideline in the first half of an NFL football game against the New York Giants in Baltimore. The Harbaughs, San Francisco's Jim and Baltimore's John, will be the first pair of brothers to coach against each other in the NFL title game. (AP Photo/Nick Wass, FIle) *** Local Caption *** Super Bowl Lookahead Football.JPEG-0d65b.jpg

Between now and kick off, a gazillion words will be written, spoken and transmitted by media about the season's last NFL game.

Let this be your guide to the story themes that will dominate. Brace yourself ...

Sibling coaches Jim and John Harbaugh, who will so overwhelm the coverage that it might seem this game is less Super Bowl XLVII than HarBowl I.

• Not just media struggling to differentiate the Harbaughs but the real Ray Lewis. Is the Ravens linebacker a devoted parent and Christian, as he claims, or the guy once charged with murder (pleading guilty to a lesser charge) after two stabbing deaths 13 years ago?

• A strange, new word: Kaepernicking. It refers to 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick's kiss-his-bicep touchdown celebration. That will lead to an analysis of the meaning behind those tattoos blanketing his body. Expect more gems from Kap's adoptive parents like this from his mother: "I'm fine with his tattoos. Had he consulted me, I may have said a few less."

• The most trite phrase in sport - "we get no respect" - getting recycled ad nauseam in the Ravens camp. The only person justified in applying it to himself would be Joe Flacco, who is regarded as fair-to-middling despite having recorded more play-off road wins than any quarterback ever.

• Reports on whether NFL commissioner Roger Goodell is going about New Orleans, where he is loathed for his crackdown on the Saints in the Bountygate case, in disguise or surrounded by a security team larger than president Barack Obama's. Or both.

 

sports@thenational.ae

twitter Follow us @SprtNationalUAE