Super Bowl 52
When: Sunday, Feb. 4
Game: Eagles (15-3) vs. New England (15-3)
Kickoff time: 6:30 p.m.
Seeds: Eagles NFC-1, Patriots AFC-1.
TV: NBC (Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth, Michele Tafoya).
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Radio: 94WIP (Merrill Reese, Mike Quick, Howard Eskin; 105.7-FM La Mega in Spanish (Rickie Ricardo, Gus Salazar, Maria Berral).
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) January 22, 2018
— Desktop: NBCSports.com
— Mobile: NFL Mobile, Yahoo Sports app
— Tablet: NBCSports app (iOS, Android), NBCSports.com
— Connected: NBC Sports app (AppleTV, Amazon Fire, Roku, Xbox, Samsung, Smart TVs)
Line: A few hours before kickoff, the Patriots were -4 or -4.5 depending on the sportsbook. Vegas Vic opened the Patriots at minus 6 with an over/under of 48. He dropped it to 4.5 last Sunday, which is where it’s been since. The total has hovered at 48 or 48.5.
Eagles vs. spread: 12-6 overall, 2-0 in the postseason. The Eagles, you may have heard, were underdogs in their two playoff game despite being at home. They’ve covered their last four overall as ‘dogs, not counting the Dallas game in Week 17 which the Eagles treated like a preseason contest.
Patriots vs. spread: 12-6 overall, 1-1 in the postseason. New England had been on a 10-1 roll until the Jaguars covered a 7.5-point line in the Patriots 24-20 win in the AFC title game.
Weather report: U.S. Bank Stadium is a domed facility. It’ll be 70 and comfortable inside, not so much outside.
Winners share: $112,000 per player. Losers share: $56,000 per.
History lesson: The Patriots beat the Eagles, 24-21, in Super Bowl 39 in Jacksonville following the 2004 season. Their most recent meeting was in 2015 when the Eagles won outright in Foxboro as 8-point underdogs.The Eagles are 7-6 all-time against New England, but just 1-4 since Bill Belichick became coach in 2000.
Jerseys: New England, as the home team, gets first choice and elected to go with their road white tops. the Patriots will wear white tops. The Eagles will go with their signature midnight green. Each team had the same unis in Supe 39.
Patriots will wear their road white jerseys in Super Bowl LII against the Philadelphia Eagles, per @MikeReiss. The team wearing white jerseys has won the Super Bowl in 12 of the previous 13 seasons, per @EpKap.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 23, 2018
God Bless America: Leslie Odom Jr.
National Anthem: Pink.
Halftime show: Justin Timberlake.
Referee: Gene Steratore is the crew chief, who is making his Super Bowl debut.
The Eagles are 10-3 when he’s been the lead official, including five consecutive wins dating back to 2013, according to Pro-Football-Reference.com. He was the ref when the Eagles trashed the Broncos, 51-23, this season. He also was reffing when the Eagles beat Detroit, 56-21, in 2007 and Carolina, 45-21, in 2014.
Notable calls made in non-Eagles games while Sterartore was the lead official include the Calvin Johnson play in 2010 which has muddled what is/what is not a catch for most of this decade, a similar controversy involving Dallas’ Dez Bryant against Green Bay in a postseason game after 2014, and just this past season, he used a piece of paper to determine the measurement of a razor-thin first-down measurement in a game between the Cowboys and Raiders. Dallas was given the first down and went on to kick the winning field goal.
New England is 12-5 in games Steratore is the referee. In 2007, his second season as a crew chief, he was on the field for the Patriots 31-28 win over the Eagles, who held a fourth-quarter lead despite being 24.5-point underdogs. This will be the third postseason game the Patriots played with Steratore. They lost a wild-card game to the Ravens in the 2007 playoffs and rolled the Broncos after the 2011 season. New England won both its 2017 games with Steratore, beating Atlanta and Buffalo.
In addition to his NFL duties, Steratore is also a college basketball referee. He works games in the Big Ten and occasionally in the Atlantic 10 and other conferences. He’s a Pennsylvania native, and lives in the Pittsburgh suburbs.
Other officials: Roy Ellison (umpire), Jerry Bergman (down judge) and Byron Boston (line judge) will work closer to the line of scrimmage. Bergman’s father was the head linesman when the Eagles beat the Cowboys on that frigid day January at Veterans Stadium in 1981 to get to their first Super Bowl. Also calling the game is Tom Hill (field judge), Scott Edwards (side judge) and Perry Paganelli (back judge). Those last three guys generally will be watching for downfield infractions, such as pass interference.
The pick: Haven’t seen anything in Nick Foles’ makeup to suggest that the stage will be too big for him here. Ditto for Doug Pederson, who should be fine as long as he doesn’t consult his former boss on time-management questions. The Patriots, of course, are generally unflappable. Maybe Pederson can invite Tom Coughlin to join him on the sidelines, similar to when Michael Corleone brought in Vincenzo Pentangeli in the Godfather II. Eagles, 26-21.