Last year’s Super Bowl between the Saints and Colts was the most watched television program in American history. More than 106 million people tuned in, and with good reason: Five of the best Super Bowls ever played have been in the past decade, and given the league’s balance, there’s little reason to believe the game will ever again consistently fail to be competitive. In many ways, from its size to the quality of play, the Super Bowl is all but perfect. But this is America. We’re always looking for something better: a bigger house, a better car, a wife with a drop-proof rack. We never settle for merely perfect. Settling is for losers. We’re going to keep trying to make things better until we die spiritually unsatisfied and crushed under a mountain of debt. It’s really our best quality.
So allow me to introduce a few ways to make the biggest game in the universe just that much bigger. Supersized, if you will. Or at the very least, bloated enough to join Kevin Smith in being booted off a Southwest Airline flight.
1. Create an overly glamorized and crooked international bidding process, like the Olympics.
You know how the International Olympic Committee has turned the host city selection process into a sleazy game of Who Can Outbribe Whom? Then they televise the vote results live on giant closed-circuit TVs in each of the finalist cities? And then the winning city goes bat-shit when they find out they were the ones who gave the IOC the best quality Polish hookers and the largest krugerrand-stuffed briefcases? The NFL should do that. Now they just announce the host city to the press. That is horseshit. They could totally turn it into a needless spectacle on par with the draft in which cities across the nation spend billions in municipal funds they don’t have and waste resources on creating elaborate Powerpoint presentations and booster videos starring local celebrities (“Andy Rooney says Vote Albany ’16!”) in a mad dash to get the game. Eventually, politicians would get involved. Soon entire cities could dupe themselves into believing that hosting the Super Bowl and building a $4 billion convention center/velodrome is their only chance of remaining a viable world destination. Then you’d get to see the losing cities take the rejection personally. So cool. You had it coming, Berlin.
2. Offer alternate announcer options on Pay-per-view.
Your Super Bowl announcers this year are Joe Buck and Troy Aikman. Both of these men may very well be cybernetic organisms who are accidentally left in standby mode for the duration of each and every broadcast. Aikman is so devoid of personality, the press had to invent blatantly false gay rumors just to make him more interesting. The only time Buck gets jazzed is when he’s doing a promotional bumper for Lowe’s Home Improvement. The solution here is obvious: Fox can split the feed. Anyone who wants can watch the game on regular-ass Fox. But for those of you who are a bit more daring, you can pay $15 and get 27 different audio feed options on demand. Want the Japanese dudes who don’t know what they should be excited about? You got it. Want ambient waterfall sounds? No problem. Would you like the broadcast synced up to Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon, in an eerie parallel of rhythms and tempo shifts? Done and done. Why do we only have to settle for one option here? It’s the fucking Super Bowl.
3. Always hold the game in an outdoor, cold weather stadium. Just so the media will suffer.
There’s nothing more aggravating than the media’s yearly ritual of bitching about their Super Bowl accommodations. Wahhh, the hotel is 40 minutes from the stadium! Can it, fatty. No one gives a shit if that all-expenses-paid trip doesn’t quite live up to your lofty standards. When the game is in a cold-weather city, the bitching gets even worse. After New York got the 2014 Super Bowl, Peter King started complaining about it four years in advance. If Telemundo anchors can sweat balls in Qatar for the ’22 World Cup, you can deal. So from now on the game is gonna be held in fucking Tuktoyaktuk, Canada. Metallica, Hole, and Veruca Salt are playing the halftime show, and you are gonna be staying in an ice shanty 400 miles away. Got a problem with it? Tell San Diego to cough up more hookers than the Inuits did.
4. Hold a “Joker” draft, in which the two participating teams can pick any one player from the other 30 NFL teams to join for that one game.
You have to slog through 18 or 19 games just to get into the Super Bowl. Your team is tired and almost certainly suffering from a few nagging injuries. Imagine if you could draft one extra player from the other 30 teams to fill an extra roster spot. This player would get a $100,000 bonus to suit up for you and be ineligible for the game’s MVP award. Who would you choose? Would you dare pick someone who could upset your precious team chemistry? Would you draft a QB? Would you pick a player from a hated division rival who might tank but is clearly worth the risk? What if the Bears had been able to pick up Tom Brady for the 2006 Super Bowl? Sure, it’s stupid on many levels. Stupid brilliant.
5. Do not allow the Black Eyed Peas to play at halftime.
Are they really playing this year’s halftime? They are? Jesus. Listen, I know the NFL usually picks the rotting, decayed carcasses of bands your grandparents like to shake their walkers at, but was this really the only other choice? Every Super Bowl should be freed from the tyranny of overly focus-grouped shit-hop that was written specifically to one day be featured on the Madagascar 3 soundtrack. The only cool thing about this halftime will be if Fergie wets herself onstage again.
6. Always hold the game on Presidents’ Day weekend so everyone has Monday off.
The NFL is already heading toward an 18-game season, so this should be a no-brainer. If you’re extending the season by two weeks, there’s no reason not to have the game fall on the holiday weekend. That way, once Monday rolls around, I don’t have to get up at 7 a.m. to simultaneously vomit and crap out the 5,000 fried buffalo quesadilla burgers I threw down the night before. Worst of all, everyone knows why you took that sick day after the Super Bowl. They know you drank yourself into oblivion. It’s time to cut out the judgmental bullshit. Furthermore, extending the postseason that far into February makes that month worthwhile. Instead of the lifeless, depressing void it currently is.
7. Petition the Federal government to make Super Bowl Sunday a “weed holiday.”
Because if we do get that next Monday off, we really need to make the most of it. Even horrible Super Bowls are great if you’re stoned to the precipice of unconsciousness. Think you’re so powerful, Roger Goodell? Then put your money where your mouth is and get me my legalized sherm for the day.
8. Have cameras follow the winning team for 24 hours after they’ve won it all.
Because if one of the winning players decides to party with Ray Lewis, and there’s some sort of knife fight involving Ray Lewis’ friends, a couple of people end up stabbed, and then Ray Lewis decides to flee the scene of that stabbing in an ostentatiously furnished limousine while wearing a full-length man-fur, I would certainly like to see that on tape for posterity. In fact, I would like NFL Films to be the camera crew so you can get really rich, deep reds on those bloodstains. Steve Sabol can make any violence look stunningly gorgeous.
9. Lower ticket prices for the game to $1 to prevent d-bag corporate fans from getting every seat.
I have no evidence of this, but it’s a fact: Ninety-seven percent of Super Bowl attendees are corporate marketing VPs who get the tickets for free and treat the trip as a vacation junket so they can take their spoiled prick kid to the game, and maybe Universal Studios after. I hate these people, mainly because I’m not one of them. The NFL already makes millions off of this game. They don’t need the gate money. If they made the tickets available to everyone for a buck (or an extremely reasonable price), then held a lottery for the right to buy the tickets, the stands come Super Sunday would fucking rock. There could even be drunken fights and obscene placards! You aren’t a real fan unless you’ve had a case of Miller Lite and you’re holding up a sign saying big ben skeeted on my seat.
10. Forbid all godaddy.com ads, because they are effin’ awful.
Who cares if Danica Patrick might take off her shirt in your little “banned” Web video? We have porn online now! Filthy porn! Porn so vile it haunts your dreams. Do you toolsheds really think we’re that stupid?