The Super Bowl, The United States of America’s largest single sporting event, is the annual championship game of the National Football League (NFL) season.
Beginning with Super Bowl I in 1967 the event has become huge, and not just for the battle to win the Vince Lombardi Trophy. The international spectacle of the Super Bowl ‘halftime show’, and advertising spots worth a million dollars per second all take centre-stage.
Revered as an American institution the Super Bowl consistently breaks records as the most watched television event nationwide. In 2013 111.5 million viewers watched the Seattle Seahawks defeat the Denver Broncos 43-8.
Prior to 1970 the trophy was competed for by teams from the American Football League (AFL) and NFL. Following this the two competitions merged in accordance with an agreement struck at the end of the 1966 season, in doing so becoming one unified football competition under the banner of the NFL.
The Super Bowl is played annually on a Sunday (referred to colloquially as Super Bowl Sunday – or Monday in Australia), and has been gradually moved from the first Sunday in January to the first Sunday in February as the season has lengthened from a 14-week regular season games to a 17-week season.
The Super Bowl ‘halftime’ show has become a monster event with some of the world’s most well-known performers and musicians entertaining sell-out crowds and television audiences.
To date, the Pittsburgh Steelers have won the most Super Bowl titles with six, followed by the Dallas Cowboys and San Francisco 49ers with five titles. The Green Bay Packers and New York Giants have both won four. In contrast the Buffalo Bills have played in a record four consecutive Super Bowls, losing all four.
The Cleveland Browns, Houston Texans, Detroit Lions and Jacksonville Jaguars have never featured in Super Bowl Sunday.