Super Bowl, Super Bowl LVII

Sports Media Review: Jersey Boys shine on Super Bowl Stage

What will Super Bowl LVII be remembered for?

It could be Patrick Mahomes' heroics in winning his second Super Bowl and Super Bowl MVP. Maybe it's the holding call on third down with under two minutes left in the game that robbed the growing audience of an exciting ending in the Chiefs' 38-35 victory. Yes, James Bradberry, the former Giant, admitted to holding on the play.

It's not a cliché in the NFL to say you can call holding on every play. But that call eliminated any chance of last-minute drama, and the boys from Jersey were right on top of it. Kevin Burkhardt (Bloomfield) and Greg Olsen (Wayne, more on that in a minute) were on the call in their first Super Bowl and they delivered in the key moments late in the game. Burkhardt hit the right notes on the incomplete pass Mahomes threw to Juju Smith Schuster and then the flag, while Olsen questioned the necessity of the call right away.

On the next play, Chiefs' running back Jerick McKinnon had a clear path to the end zone, and Olsen raised his voice in real-time, "He's got to get down!!". McKinnon did slide at the two-yard line, allowing the Chiefs to run the clock down as kicker Harrison Butker booted a Super Bowl-winning 27-yard field goal. Burkhardt set the scene and did what great broadcasters do in building the drama, correctly pointing out that Butker had missed earlier on his only other field goal try.

Burkhardt and Olsen will get another season together for Fox before Tom Brady is reportedly ready to step into the No. 1 analyst role for the 2024 season, which includes a Super Bowl gig. Olsen said he would make it "hard as hell" for Fox to move him out of that spot, and he is delivering on that promise.

The lasting visual memory on social media may be the fantastic closeup by FOX cameras of Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni with tears in his eyes during the National Anthem. Before halftime, the Nick Sirianni crying meme was already flying around social media.

I admit it. I didn't watch all five and a half hours of the pregame show. But I saw some memorable moments outside the expected, well-produced features on the coaches, quarterbacks, and key players.

One useful observation that stuck was Sean Payton's pick of the Chiefs, saying the difference in the game was the Chiefs' edge in special teams. That proved on the mark as the biggest play of the second half came with 10:30 left in the fourth quarter. On fourth down, Eagles punter Arryn Siposs hit a low line drive 38 yards down the middle to the Chiefs' Kadarius Toney, who returned the punt 65 yards to the six-yard line, leading to the Chiefs' go-ahead touchdown. Payton was making his last appearance (for now) as a broadcaster, leaving Fox to become head coach of the Denver Broncos.

FOX's gimmick of putting 11 people on their makeshift turf field was interesting. Curt Menafee, Howie Long, Terry Bradshaw, Michael Strahan, Jimmy Johnson, Rob Gronkowski, Jay Glazer, Charissa Thompson, Payton, Michael Vick and Charles Woodson were all on the outdoor set. Peter Schrager even joined them later once he arrived at the stadium from one of the team's hotels. Resident coaches Johnson and Payton previewed formations and kinda, sorta demonstrated the plays with the cast. Charissa Thompson even made a highlight reel catch that earned a replay!

Jets fans surely groaned when the 50th-anniversary tribute to the 1972 Dolphins' undefeated season aired. Everyone else may have groaned when they used actors to re-create the Super Bowl VII post-game Dolphins' locker room, though having the real Larry Czonka narrate the piece and interact with his younger self was strangely poignant. Overall, it was a good week for Jets fans, with the sweep of the Rookie of the Year Awards (Garrett Wilson, Offense; Sauce Gardner, Defense) and two of their greatest players named to the Pro Football Hall of Fame (Darrelle Revis, Joe Klecko).

Thanks to all the stories about the Jersey connections between Burkhardt and Olsen last week, their first on-field introduction during the pregame show came with several Wayne and Wayne Hills references.

The pregame MVP was Donna Kelce, the mother of tight end Travis of the Chiefs and center Jason of the Eagles. She showed off her half Eagles/half Chiefs jacket and her Kelce shoes (one in each team's colors) on the field in a pregame interview with Erin Andrews as she detailed what she told each of her sons going into Super Bowl week.

Peter Schrager, a Freehold Township, NJ native, had a nice feature on all the great moments in the now-State Farm Stadium in Glendale, including Russell Wilson's last-second interception to earn Tom Brady his fourth Super Bowl win and Strahan's last game for the Giants, Super Bowl XLII when they took down the 18-0 Patriots, denying Brady another championship.

As for the commercials, it is all about what we remember on Monday, right? These companies spend millions to get their product in front of the viewer. So Monday morning, I am remembering Jon Hamm and Brie Larson in a fridge and Pete Davidson eating a sandwich for Hellmann's Mayonnaise. Vintage rock stars Joan Jett, Ozzy Osbourne, Billy Idol and Paul Stanley in full KISS makeup for something called Workday. Serena Williams with a well-done locker room speech for, I think, Remy Martin? And late in the game, I thought I saw John Travolta with the guys from Scrubs singing a new version of Summer Nights we never thought we needed.

A final last note: They introduced the interpreters for the pregame performances, such as the National Anthem, as "Sign Language Performers" which is a nice touch. A feed that provided a side-by-side view with the sign language performer in a split screen box was available online.