To celebrate a century of football, the NFL dished out a Super Bowl commercial with a budget that would make Bill Gates quiver. For old and new fans alike, the NFL showcased the journey football has endured through the eyes of its players. It begins proper, accentuating the prestige and fame that comes with success in professional sports, but evolves into a calculated madness that reflects the war that is a football. It starts as any highlight play starts, with a fumble. It is just as explosive as any football game, with several stunts that show how brutal it can be. But just like football, it shows the reason they play it. With every hit the viewer thinks, why would someone endure such torture? Money is certainly a motivator, but the commercial gives several hints to real events that have shaped the game of football.
Just like life or football in its purest form, there is a delicate balance to the commercial. It’s all about community. This is not a commercial that panders to the audience by using a celebrity endorsement to sell a drug for back pain. This is a commercial that depicts football players doing what they love. It’s a celebration. They toss the ball back and forth delivering punchlines that’ll make a longtime fan tear up and a novice laugh. Players of the past and future are all present to show the community of football. It is more than a sport; it is more than a team. Football is a family.
I could have chosen any other commercial that made me laugh a little bit or head to the tissue box, but they wouldn’t have been a testament to what advertising is capable of. This commercial has the power to do both: cry at the nostalgia and smile at the jokes. The message is strong, but the presentation is stronger. It is an accurate representation of the emotion football draws out in people. The coaches, the players, the fans, and even the haters can all appreciate the journey that football has gone through to get to this point. This commercial brings justice to the painful love people have for the game. It’s bittersweet seeing how far this sport has come.