In the spirit of Superbowl weekend, we have gathered a collection of what is perhaps the most highly regarded and recommended Superbowl books and DVDs you will find anywhere. Some of these are even collector editions that would make a great gift for the Superbowl fan and enthusiast.
In professional American football, the Super Bowl is the championship game of the National Football League (NFL). The game and its ancillary festivities constitute Super Bowl Sunday. Over the years it has become the most-watched U.S. television broadcast of the year, and has become likened to a de facto U.S. national holiday. In addition, many popular singers and musicians have performed during the Super Bowl’s pre-game and halftime ceremonies. Super Bowl Sunday is the second-largest U.S. food consumption day, following Thanksgiving.
The Super Bowl was first played on January 15, 1967 as part of an agreement between the NFL and its younger rival, the American Football League (AFL) in which each league’s championship team would play each other in an “AFL-NFL World Championship Game”. After the leagues merged in 1970, the Super Bowl became the NFL’s championship game, played between the champions of the league’s two conferences: the American Football Conference (AFC) and the National Football Conference (NFC). Since the NFL season extends into the New Year, the Super Bowl uses Roman numerals to identify each game, rather than the year it was held. For example, Super Bowl XLII, played in February 2008, was actually part of the 2007 season. Super Bowl XLIII will be played between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Arizona Cardinals at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida on February 1, 2009 in which the Steelers are a 6.5 point favorite.
The Super Bowl was created as part of the merger agreement between the National Football League (NFL) and its competitive rival, the American Football League (AFL). After its inception in 1920, the NFL fended off several rival leagues before the AFL began play in 1960. The intense competitive war for players and fans led to serious merger talks between the two leagues in 1966, culminating in a merger agreement announcement on June 8, 1966. One of the conditions of the AFC-NFC Merger was that the winners of each league’s championship game would meet in a contest to determine the “world champion of football”. According to NFL Films President Steve Sabol, then NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle wanted to call the game “The Big One”. During the discussions to iron out the details, AFC founder and Kansas City Chiefs owner Lamar Hunt had jokingly referred to the proposed inter league championship as the “Super Bowl”. Hunt thought of the name after seeing his children playing with a toy called a Super Ball; the small, round ball is now on display at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. The name was consistent with postseason college football games which had long been known as “bowl games.” The “bowl” term originated from the Rose Bowl Game, which was in turn named for the bowl-shaped stadium in which it is played. Hunt only meant his suggested name to be a stopgap until a better one could be found. Nevertheless, the name “Super Bowl” became permanent. After the NFC’s Green Bay Packers convincingly won the first two Super Bowls, some team owners feared for the future of the merger. At the time, many doubted the competitiveness of AFL teams compared with NFL counterparts. That perception all changed with the AFL’s New York Jets’ defeat of the Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III in Miami. One year later, the AFC’s Kansas City Chiefs defeated the NFL Minnesota Vikings 23-7 and won Super Bowl IV in New Orleans, the last World Championship game played between the champions of the two leagues, as the league merger finally took place later that year. The game is played annually on a Sunday as the final game of the NFL Playoffs. Originally the game took place in early to mid-January following a 14-game regular season and playoffs. Over the years the date of the Super Bowl has progressed from the second Sunday in January, to the third, then the fourth Sunday in January; the game is now played on the first Sunday in February, given the current 17-week (16 games and one bye week) regular season and three rounds of playoffs. This progression of the date of the Super Bowl has been caused by the following: the expansion of the NFL regular season in 1978 from 14 games to 16, the expansion of the pre-Super Bowl playoffs from two rounds to three (also in 1978), the addition of the regular season bye-week in the 1990s, and the decision prior to the 2003 season to start the regular season the week after Labor Day, moving the start of the season to a week later than it had been (in 1997, for example, the regular season started on Sunday, August 31). Former NFL commissioner Pete Rozelle is often considered the mastermind of both the merger and the Super Bowl. His leadership guided the two competitors into the merger agreement and cemented the preeminence of the Super Bowl. The winning team gets the Vince Lombardi Trophy, named for the coach of the Green Bay Packers, who won the first two Super Bowl games and 3 of the 5 preceding NFL championships (1961–62, 1965). Following his death in September 1970, the trophy was named the Vince Lombardi Trophy, and was first awarded as such to the Baltimore Colts at Super Bowl V in Miami. Super Bowl III was the first to be numbered. Super Bowls I and II were not known as such until the game’s third year and were named “The AFC-NFC World Championship Game” when they were played.
Recommended Superbowl Books
The Stars That Never Shine:
The Making of A Superbowl Football Player
Review The Stars That Never Shine I think that this is an extraordinary book about sports, performance and life. It is a testamony of personal courage with clear examples of extraordinary teamwork and endurance through historically challenging years. Joe Harris’ dedication to the spirit personal accomplishment superceded financial reward and sometimes even constraints posed by social norms and race. Joe Harris is a winner and worthy of being a role model and motivational speaker for young and aspiring athletes. He is a humble and gentle giant in sports and still large enough to be thankful to his parents, community, coaches and alma marter — Georgia Tech. –W. Calvin Anderson The Stars That Never Shine will leave you with a keen perspective on life in the sports world; it brings a voice where there is silence. –Anthony Prior, author “The Slave Side of Sunday”. Autobiographical reflections of a former NFL Player from Super Bowl XIV. This book is a must read for aspiring football players. It provides invaluable insights and advice for ball players at any age from secondary school through college. It is a great tool for those who want a Super Bowl ring.
Team America begins when President Derevenko of Russia declares that the American Superbowl Champions are not the champions of the world, only North America, and that the Russian National Team is better. He challenges America to a match to determine who the true champions of the world are. Although sceptical at first, America accepts the challenge and proceeds to build a super team of all-stars, the very best in America, to meet the challenge. When the words, “Russia vs. America,” flash across the television sets throughout America and around the world, sports fans, no matter what their background may be, are taken on a roller coaster ride of emotions that will change their lives forever. “Derevenko has challenged us. He says we are not the best in the world in football, that Russia is better. I say he’s wrong. He says let’s prove it down on the field where it counts. I say that’s a challenge we can’t ignore. What do you think?” -President Jack MacMillan “At first the people were sceptical. It was so bloody ridiculous, America playing the Russians for the championship of the world in football. Bizzare! Who the hell did the Ruskies think they were anyways. They were nobody. Nobody had ever heard of them before. What chance did they have of winning. None. And playing them in the summer, who’s brilliant idea was that. Football’s not summer. Baseball’s summer. The fall is football. And what about the prices they were looking to charge. Two and three times regular season prices. Highway robbery. And for what! A mess. A bloody travesty. The biggest goddam debacle of all time.” -The American People “You Americans, you’re unbelievable. I’ve never seen such arrogance in my life. Just because you’re Americans, you think you’ve got some preordained right to be the best in whatever field of endeavour you choose. You think just because you invented the game of football you’re bound to be better than anyone else. Well that’s just not true. I’ve seen the Russians play and they’re excellent and I’ve seen you Americans play and you’re just not as good. Believe me, you people are in for a rude awakening. Let me make a prediction right now. Not only will the Russians beat you, they’ll beat you easily. Mark my words, if this thing turns into a slaughter it’ll be you people on the receiving end, and you know what, it’ll look good on you.” -European Sportsman, Bunny O’Reilly “Is Team America a great team? I think not. It takes more than great players to make a great team. The pieces have got to fit together. There has to be a certain chemistry that brings the players together and binds them into a cohesive force. Whether Team America has the pieces that fit and the necessary chemistry to be great remains to be seen.” -Reporter, Frank Carrington “Nonsense! Let me state unequivocally, Team America will decimate the Russians. The defense will annihilate the Russian offense. By the end of the first half there will be Ruskie arms and legs strewn all over the field, along with a couple of heads. The offense will rip the Ruskie defense to shreds. There is no way they are going to be able to stop our power, even slow it down. We will be scoring points every time we get the ball and we will be getting it whenever we feel like it. Make no mistake about it, this is a great team. These people are winners, the cream of the crop. There is no way they can lose to anybody, especially the Russians. So if somebody suggests to you they might, tell him to put his money where his mouth is. Team America is a team we can be proud of, so enjoy and let nobody spoil your fun. Shortly, the carnage will begin and then there will be no doubt about it. Team America will truly be the champions of the world.”
SUPERBOWL HOLDINGS LTD.: International Competitive Benchmarks and Financial Gap Analysis [DOWNLOAD: PDF]
SUPERBOWL HOLDINGS LTD.: International Competitive Benchmarks and Financial Gap Analysis Though we heavily rely on historical performance, the figures reported in this report are not historical but are forecasts and projections for the coming fiscal year. The forecasts are updated quarterly. This particular report was updated in the last quarter. In order to maintain comparability over time and across companies and countries, we use an index system. In the case of a firm’s assets, we treat the total assets as equaling 100, irrespective of the value of the local currency. All other assets are then calculated as a percent from total assets. In this way, the structure of the firm’s assets can be easily interpreted and compared with international benchmarks. For liabilities, total liabilities and equity are indexed to equal to 100. For the income statement, total revenue is indexed to equal 100, and all other figures are calculated as a percent of these figures. Ratios are projected using raw financial statistics and, as ratios, are therefore comparable. The source(s) for the various raw statistics include public filings, corporate releases, and various other data sources. Given a company’s financial structure, the resulting figures are benchmarked across “leading competitors”. In choosing the leading competitors, Icon Group chooses only those firms with sound financial situations or those not undergoing radical restructuring, or where random volatility, mergers, or bankruptcy affects financial performance. Since the calculation of competitors’ benchmarks proceeds in a similar fashion, but are aggregated across all competitors, one can directly conduct a financial gap analysis. Here, Icon Group graphically reports, for each part of the financial statement, the larger gaps that the firm has vis-a-vis the leading competitors. A gap need not be a bad sign.
Recommended Superbowl DVDs
Super Bowl XXXI-XL Collector’s Set
Continue your collection with the 4th decade of Super Bowl games! Live the excitement of Super Bowls XXXI – XL and the seasons leading up to each big game in a 5-disc collector’s set loaded with defining highlights, enhanced content and exclusive memorabilia. The fourth set in the Super Bowl Collection, Super Bowl XXXI-XL, features some of the most memorable events in NFL History: – John Elway caps his Hall-of-Fame career by leading the Denver Broncos to two consecutive Super Bowl victories — earning MVP honors in his final game – It took every play of the game to decide Super Bowl XXXIV as Kevin Dyson and the Tennessee Titans fell a yard short to Mike Jones and the St Louis Rams – The Baltimore Ravens proved defense really does win championships as Ray Lewis spearheaded a 34-7 drubbing of the New York Giants – Just a year after leaving the Oakland Raiders, Tampa Bay’s John Gruden defeated his old team in Super Bowl XXXVII to become the youngest coach in NFL history to win a Super Bowl championship – The New England Patriots establish a true dynasty by winning three of four Super Bowls behind the golden arm of two time Super Bowl MVP Tom Brady and the clutch leg of Adam Vinatieri – Jerome Bettis returns to his hometown Detroit to lead the 6th Seeded Pittsburgh Steelers to their 5th Super Bowl victory This powerful 5-disc set features over 10 hours of game footage, recaps of every season, and a trip into the minds of the players and coaches that made these games legendary. Build your collection today!
NFL Super Bowl I-XL Collector’s Set
Review: This is pure heaven for any true NFL fan. Highlights of every Superbowl since 1967 are presented here in one glorious package. Each Superbowl has a 25-30 min ducumentary about the game itself and is preceeded by a 20 min review of the season that led up to it. Not only this but each game also has a couple of extra documentaries about the key players/events. The photography is fantastic, the music is adrenaline-pounding and the packaging/booklets include full player listings, score breakdowns, programme covers and reproduction tickets.
This box set will only disappoint those who were expecting the full game broadcast for every Superbowl but then does anyone truly think that’s feasible at over 3 1/2 hours per game! Go on, treat yourself and work through them 1 to 40 to get a fascinating insight into the development of the game and first sight of every classic play.
NFL Films Super Bowl Collection – Super Bowls XXI-XXX
Review: These Super Bowl DVD box sets have been simply the best, I tell ya. If you haven’t already, you have to check out the first two box sets. Not only do these sets have highlights from the Super Bowls, but they have highlights from the season play leading up to each Super Bowl! And what highlights they are. There’s two special features segments for each Super Bowl event.
The Super Bowls themselves on this set are:
Denver v. NY Giants / Denver v. Redskins / 49ers v. Bengals / 49ers v. Denver / NY Giants v. Buffalo / Washington v. Buffalo / Buffalo v. Dallas / Buffalo v. Dallas (again) / San Diego v. 49ers / Dallas v. Pittsburgh
The first two box sets are the two most cherished dvd sets in my collection. And I love DVDs, a little too much probably.
NFL Films Super Bowl Collection – Super Bowls XI-XX
Prepare for impact because you’re about to witness more of the most incredible NFL action ever captured on film! Relive the greatest moments from Super bowl XI through XX. Experience the raw emotion, the hard hits, and the game-breaking plays that have made the Super Bowl the greatest one-day sporting event on earth.
The second set in the Super Bowl Collection, “Super Bowls XI-XX” takes you back in time to relive some of the greatest moments in Super Bowl history including:
-The Cowboy’s dominant defense the recovers from four fumbles and picks four passes en route to victory in Super Bowl XII.
-A Bradshaw-Stallworth pass for 73 yards that makes the difference in Super Bowl XIV.
-The 49ers’ close win in Super Bowl XVI that begins a decade of dominance.
-Joe Gibbs’ gutsy fourth-and-one play call that changes the momentum of Super Bowl XVII.
-Marcus Allen’s incredible change-of-direction run in Super Bowl XVIII.
-The colorful 1985 Bears’ defense that shuts down the Pats in Super Bowl XX.
This dynamic 5-disc set features over 10 hours of spectacular game footage, interviews and insights from the players, coaches and commentators who continue the tradition that is the Super Bowl. Build your collection today.
Live the excitement of the second 10 Super Bowls and the seasons leading up to each big game in a five-disc collector’s set loaded with defining highlights, enhanced content and exclusive memorabilia.
Greatest Moments in Super Bowl History
For this new edition of great Super Bowl highlights, NFL Films jumps around a bit, staying away from viewing 34 Super Bowls in chronological order. The video is split up into 12 chapters focusing on different aspects, starting with “Masters of the Game,” which focuses on the three players who won multiple MVP awards (quarterbacks Terry Bradshaw, Joe Montana, Bart Starr). Other segments look at special-team play, defenses, receivers, and the like. “The Quarterbacks” includes a segment on the MVP of Super Bowl 34, St. Louis Ram Kurt Warner. The material really comes alive in the DVD version of the title, but any fan of the game will be charged up by NFL Films’ gusto mix of music, action, and insightful interviews (from players, coaches, and such experts as Frank Deford, many of them new). –Doug Thomas
This disc really shows how DVD can improve a production. During viewing, icons pop up on the screen indicating that additional information on the game or player being featured can be shown by pressing a button on your remote. For instance, when you see Washington Redskin John Riggins’s game-defining run at the end of Super Bowl XVII, you can read Riggins’s statistics for the day, see two interview segments about the play, or see the play broken down from multiple angles. DVD-ROM features include complete statistics for all 34 games, images of the programs, rings, and game play plus bios and trivia for the true fanatic. The use of multiple angles and separate audio tracks is underscored in diagnosing the dramatic final play of Super Bowl XXXIV with two different audio tracks: the elated Rams’ announcers and the dejected Titan crew. Hopefully, these impressive additional features will be used in more sport highlight shows. –Doug Thomas