It’s the television event of the year, so big that even the commercials are ranked by importance and influence. It’s the Super Bowl, and media members and celebrities will flock from all across the country to celebrate the event and root on the two teams participating.
With the spotlight set on Super Bowl XLVI, who should be considered to be the faces of this year’s big game? The Wife Hates Sports has the answer – ranking this year’s most influential faces of the Super Bowl – in a three-part series. Chime in on your own personal rankings, and let’s celebrate the New England Patriots, New York Giants and Super Bowl XLVI.
The 46 Faces of Super Bowl XLVI (Part 3 of 3)
15. Vince Wilfork
At 6’2” and 325 pounds, Wilfork is a giant, physical presence that can – and regularly does – take over a game in the trenches. He single-handedly took over both of New England’s playoff games, posting 2 ½ sacks and causing all sorts of problems for opposing quarterbacks Tim Tebow and Joe Flacco. Expect more of the same against the Giants in Super Bowl XLVI.
14. Jason Pierre-Paul
Pierre-Paul has been one of the most dominant defensive linemen in the league this year. His 16 ½ sacks were the fourth most in the NFL and he posted six sacks over the last four regular season games. With the combination of Umenyiora, Tuck and Pierre-Paul, the New England O-line will have its hands full.
13. Wes Welker
Targeted 172 times by Tom Brady during the regular season, Welker ended the year with 122 receptions, 1,569 yards and 9 TD’s. While Gronkowski clearly got most of the pub, Welker is still the steadiest piece on offense. He’ll clearly get his targets in the Super Bowl, and new fiancé Anna Burns (listed in Part 2) will be rooting him on.
12. Victor Cruz
Cruz was one of the biggest surprises in the NFL this season, sending plenty of Fantasy Football owners into a major frenzy. Cruz’s 82 catches, 1,536 yards and 9 TD’s were all team highs – and who could ignore his trademark salsa dance celebration every time he crossed the goal line? Oh, and with his acrobatic catches and similar frame to David Tyree (6’0”, 203 pounds), well, you get the idea.
11. Gisele Bundchen
Fashion model, Victoria’s Secret Angel and one of the most beautiful women on Earth, Bundchen is also married to Tom Brady. During the early portions of Super Bowl week, Gisele hit the headlines when she asked friends and family to pray for and support her hubby. In the end, she’ll just hit the headlines regularly for the usual reasons – a.k.a. her striking beauty.
10. Chuck Noll
Noll headlines the National Football League history books with four Super Bowl rings, and that’s why he hits the list this season, as New England coach Bill Belichick can tie him with a victory in Super Bowl XLVI. If the Patriots win, a debate on best coach ever would surely follow.
9. Joe Montana
Joe Montana’s appearance on this list is for the same reason as Chuck Noll. Montana currently headlines the NFL history books as a quarterback with four Super Bowl rings. With a win in Super Bowl XLVI, Tom Brady – who grew up idolizing Montana – would win a fourth ring of his own. As with the two coaches, a debate on the best quarterback ever would be next in line.
8. Rob Gronkowski
Gronkowski hits the news for a variety of reasons. First, he was a history making tight end this season, racking up 90 catches, 1,327 yards and 17 TD’s during the regular season. More importantly, it’s Gronk’s ankle that is stealing the headlines during Super Bowl week. Clearly, Gronkowski is a major piece of New England’s offense, and was recently seen not limping on the eve of the Super Bowl. But cruising around for photos and sprinting on the field are two completely different things, so no one knows just how healthy he’ll be come Sunday.
7. Peyton Manning
Peyton is stealing the majority of the headlines this week, what with his health issues and future with the Colts still in question. He also has an opportunity to watch his little brother play in a Super Bowl on his home turf.
6. David Tyree
It wouldn’t be a surprise to hear that a number of Super Bowl parties were having drinking games involving the number of times that Tyree’s name gets dropped during the big game. Clearly, “The Catch” is one of the biggest plays in Super Bowl history, and considering that it was the highlight of the last time these two teams met in the Super Bowl, the opportunity to mention it ad nauseum is warranted. Just don’t tell a Patriots fan that – and don’t tell Rodney Harrison, either.
5. Tom Coughlin
Disliked by players, too abrasive, on the hot seat year after year… Tom Coughlin has heard it all over the years. But after another challenging regular season juggling plenty of injuries and question marks on his team, the Giants head coach has found a way to push his squad to another Super Bowl. With another victory on the highest stage, people will never question him again.
4. Bill BelichickShort answers with the media, a deadpan demeanor and a wardrobe that no one would ever find at Armani, Bill Belichick likely rubs many people the wrong way. But one thing’s clear, he’s one heck of a coach. He may be aggressive bordering on reckless at times, but you can’t argue his track record, especially with the New England Patriots. With one more Super Bowl victory, he’ll tie Chuck Noll for the most all-time.
3. Eli Manning
First, he caught criticism for referring to himself as elite, than he followed that by playing better than most quarterbacks in the league, completing numerous fourth quarter comebacks and once again leading the Giants to the Super Bowl. Now, Eli Manning finds himself with an opportunity to win his second Super Bowl, passing big brother Peyton, who for years, many thought was by far the superior Manning.
2. Tom Brady
New England fans love him while opposing fans loathe him. Women adore him, while men adore his supermodel wife. His track record speaks for itself, with division title after division title, three Super Bowl rings and so on. With a win in Super Bowl XLVI, Brady will have his fourth Super Bowl victory, which would tie him with Joe Montana for the most in NFL history.
1. The Late Myra Kraft
Myra Kraft, the wife of Patriots owner Robert Kraft, died of cancer last July at the age of 68. The New England Patriots family has mourned her loss, honored her life and dedicated this season to her. The team has worn a patch featuring her initials (MHK) throughout the entire season.
Kraft was the glue that kept the Patriots’ family together, and it was clear that the entire group was devastated when she passed. “Absence makes the heart grow fonder”, as the saying goes, and the Patriots will continue to play with heavy hearts, wishing, hoping and striving to win one more for the team’s matriarch.
Enjoy Super Bowl XLVI, and as always, thanks for reading The Wife Hates Sports…