Super Bowl still worth watching, even minus Broncos

The Denver Broncos will not be playing Sunday in Super Bowl XLVI.

They did, however, play in XII, XXI, XXII, XXIV, XXXII and XXXIII. Denver won in XXXII and XXXIII, but got hammered in XII, XXI, XXII and XXIV, the worst being a LV-X hammering at the hands of the San Francisco XLIXers in New Orleans in XXIV.

Yes, the Broncos have a long history of going to Super Bowls — and a longer history of not going.

It’s a given that if the Broncos are playing on a Super Sunday, the entire day is planned around huge parties, either homebound or bar-bound.

I vaguely recall the last two Bronco Super Bowls — one of which I spent in the bowels of The Daily Sentinel because I was forced to work, the other getting wild and crazy with an assortment of ner-do-wells at a local watering hole.

One of my most vivid memories of the Broncos winning a second straight NFL title didn’t come from the game, but rather on my way home when I pulled up to a stop light and glanced over at the person who pulled up beside me. He looked at me and we simultaneously hoisted thumbs up, started laughing, put our cars in park, jumped out, ran around the vehicles and high-fived each other.

Happy days, those.

Unfortunately, we have become accustomed to watching Super Bowls the Broncos don’t play in, which is what we will do Sunday for the 13th straight year.

If you are a Patriots fan, you are surely a bit worried despite your boys being a 3-point favorite because they haven’t fared well against the opposing N.Y. Giants of late, having that perfect season go down the drain in Super XLII 17-14, then losing this year in regular season 24-20.

If you happen to be a Giants fan, you are surely counting on your defensive line to run pressure QB Tom Brady mercilessly, and you are hoping your QB, Eli Manning, finishes off his best season ever in superstar fashion.

A fan of neither?

Then watch it for the commercials that debut by the dozens, endless battles for your discretionary dollar between every cell phone manufacturer on the face of the earth, Budweiser, Pepsi and Coke, just to name a few.

Or watch it for the halftime show that has given us everything from an over-the-hill Springsteen to an over-the-hill Who to an over-the-hill Tom Petty.

This year (are you starting to note a theme here?), the headliner is Madonna, who was once a famous singer/dancer/entertainer, but is now, well, in her mid-50s.

If Bud Light, Coke and Pepsi are not enough to keep you interested, how about a prop bet or two?

This game generates the biggest buzz of any with the betting public — and it’s not just about the two teams and the score.

Check out some of these side bets one can make:

■ Will Kelly Clarkson forget or omit at least one word of the official U.S. National Anthem?

■ What color will Madonna’s hair be when she begins the halftime show?

n Will Madonna be wearing fishnet stockings at any point during the halftime show?

■ How many times will Peyton Manning be shown on TV during the game?

n How many times will Jim Irsay be mentioned during the game?

And on and on it goes, a bet for everyone.

As for where you actually participate in this madness, that’s up to you — a matter of personal choice.

You can go for the gusto with others who like to fit in with the crowd. Loud crowds will be assured at local sports bars like Wrigley Field, Naggy Magee’s, The Ale House, Hooters,, Kannah Creek or the End Zone in Fruita.

You might prefer something a bit quieter, yet still want to get out of the house. Try one of the many motel bars or a restaurant that has prominent TVs displayed, maybe Pantuso’s, The DoubleTree, Rockslide, Famous Dave’s, Roosters or Outback Steakhouse.

There is, of course, the private party route or the isolationist method, sitting at home with a bag of chips, some dip, a favorite brew and the ability to actually hear the commercials.

However you do it, enjoy.


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