The first truly cold weather Super Bowl slowly looms for football fans, as the NFL’s seminal game is less than a month away.
Taking place at East Rutherford, N. J.’s MetLife Stadium, the home of the New York Giants and Jets, representatives of the AFC and NFC will battle in Super Bowl XLVIII on Sunday, Feb. 2. Kick-off is scheduled for 6:25 p.m. ET.
Based off recent odds, the Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos are favored to meet with two rounds of the playoffs left, but several top teams like the Carolina Panthers, San Francisco 49ers, New England Patriots, and New Orleans Saints could also emerge.
The Super Bowl has been played in cold-weather cities before in 2012 (Indianapolis), 2006 (Detroit), 1992 (Minneapolis) and 1982 (Pontiac, Mich.), but all of those stadiums were indoors compared to the airy, 82,500-capacity MetLife.
Unfortunately for fans who will shell out thousands of dollars for tickets, they will not be able to tailgate after the game’s official committee made a rather controversial decision last month.
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“You will be allowed to have food in your car and have drink in your car,” Super Bowl XVLIII CEO Al Kelly said to ESPN. "And provided you’re in the boundaries of a single parking space, you’ll be able to eat or drink right next to your car. However you’re not going to be able to take out a lounge chair, you’re not going to be able to take out a grill and you’re not going to be able to take up more than one parking space.”
Parking could also be a serious issue, with only about 13,000 spots reportedly available to fans. Charter buses dubbed Fan Express will pick up and drop off fans at nine locations around the region, or others can take regional rail N.J. Transit, according to ESPN. Cars also must have parking passes if they intend to drop off passengers.
After media reaction to an expected winter storm earlier this season, the NFL announced last month it has built in contingency plans that would shift the game to Saturday, Feb. 1, Monday, Feb. 3, or even Tuesday, Feb. 4.
FOX will be the lead broadcaster for the first time since 2011, with the long-time team of announcer Joe Buck and Dallas Cowboys Hall of Fame quarterback Troy Aikmen making their fourth appearance in the booth.
The halftime show will feature multi-platinum and Grammy-winning singer Bruno Mars, known best for his hits “Just the Way You Are,” “Grenade,” and last year’s “Treasure.”
Commercials will be a hot topic once again, with such stars as David Beckham and Stephen Colbert already linked to ads that will cost upwards of $4 million to air, according to AdAge. The usual advertisers like Anheuser-Busch InBev, Chevrolet, and Coca-Cola are expected to be big players as usual, while rising yogurt company Chobani will make its first appearance during the big game.