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Gay Guide to Super Bowl XLIX

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All you need to know about the Seahawks, Patriots, Tom Brady's balls, porn stars, the hotties, puppies and kittens, and the game itself.

Richard Sherman and Rob Gronkowski and two stars to watch.
Richard Sherman and Rob Gronkowski and two stars to watch.
Photos by Mark J. Rebilas (left), Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

When you have the quarterback of one of the Super Bowl teams talking at length about squeezing and handling balls, you know this is one game you won't want to miss. My annual gay guide to the Super Bowl.

WHAT: Super Bowl XLIX (49 for you mathematically challenged). It's a shame the Roman numeral for 1 wasn't A, in which case it would be Super Bowl XLAX. The game will be played Sunday Feb. 1 and pits the New England Patriots (14-4) from from the American Football Conference against the Seattle Seahawks (14-4) from the National Football Conference. The Las Vegas oddsmakers have made the game a "pick 'em," which means there is no pointspread for the game since it is considered so even. To win a bet, simply pick the winning team. Unless the pointspread changes (some bookies have recently made New England a one-point favorite), this would be the first pick 'em in Super Bowl history.

WHERE: The game will be played at University of Phoenix Stadium in the Phoenix suburb of Glendale, Ariz. Despite being played indoors, the game will have a grass field thanks to a giant slab of turf that is rolled outside in the sun until days before the game.

KICKOFF/TV: The game will kickoff at 6:30 p.m. Eastern time after a pregame show that started in approximately August. It will be shown on NBC, with Al Michaels as the play-by-play announcer and Cris Collinsworth as the analyst. Collinsworth has a hot son, Austin, who played for Notre Dame and has a ripped body his daddy could only hope for.
NBC consistently does the best job with the NFL, so this is a broadcast I will enjoy, even though I can't stand either team.

FASHION NOTE: The Seahawks are the designated home team and will wear their blue-green jerseys, which are pretty slick. The Patriots will wear white uniforms with blue pants. helmets; both team uniforms work for me.

The Seahawks have a rather fierce-looking bird on their helmet, while the Patriots have a stylized guy with a Paul Revere hat on theirs.

I much preferred the old Patriots helmet, where the guy had his legs spread wide, ready to feel the hands of the quarterback on his tight patriotic butt as he prepared to hike the ball. It was the second-gayest helmet ever, after the old Buccaneers classic with the dandy pirate sporting the earring and clenching the knife between his mouth with the come-hither wink.

QUARTERBACKS: You've certainly heard of Tom Brady, the Patriots quarterback, aka the husband of supermodel Giselle Bundchen. Brady might be the only superstar quarterback who earns less than his wife. He is the spokesman for Uggs and was once photographed holding a baby lamb. He also in 2000 had the ugliest NFL predraft photo, wearing nothing but old-man boxer shorts and looking like he just spent six months in solitary confinement. It's amazing he has gone on to become a fashion plate and be one of the all-time great NFL quarterbacks. This is Brady's sixth Super Bowl and he is 3-2 in the games.

The Patriots are under investigation by the NFL after it was found that 11 of the 12 footballs they used during the AFC Championship Game were improperly deflated. A deflated ball is easier to throw and catch in wet weather. This past Thursday, Brady gave a press conference for the ages, where he denied having anything to do with the tampering (I didn't believe him for a second). It was a tour de farce that allowed everyone to channel their inner 7-year-old boy as Brady said this about balls, carried live on national TV:

  • "I'm not squeezing the balls."
  • "Some guys like them round and some guys like them thin. Some guys like them tacky. Some guys like them brand new. Some guys like old balls."
  • "I don’t want anyone touching the balls after that. I don’t want anyone rubbing them.’’
  • "There are a lot of variables with obviously Mother Nature and the balls."

There is no way Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson can come close to that. He won the Super Bowl last year and is in only his third season. He is a great player but needs to tone down his God-squading. He was awful through the first 3 ½ quarterbacks of the NFC Championship Game, throwing four interceptions. After Seattle pulled it out, he actually said that God was testing him. "That's God setting it up, to make it so dramatic, so rewarding, so special." Barf. Wilson sucked until the final six minutes and God had nothing to do with it. She doesn't care about who wins a game and it's annoying when guys like Wilson reach for that angle first thing.

THE COACHES: Pete Carroll, the Seahawks coach, is an upbeat, gregarious bullshitter who can't stop talking. His counterpart, New England's Bill Belichick is a monosyllabic mumbler who wears gray hoodies on the sidelines that match his personality. Opposites in demeanor, they are both great coaches.

Carroll used to be the Patriots coach but was fired after the 1999 season, to be replaced by Belichick. Carroll would like nothing more than to stick it to the organization that canned him, while Belichick wants to win his first title in 10 years. Expect each to come up with some wrinkle for the game.

THE FANS: These are two of the most annoying fan bases in sports. There is a reason that Patriot fans are called "Massholes." When the Pats are winning they love to gloat and boast as if they had something to do with the win and feel they are superior fans for having the luck to root for a winner. And when the Patriots lose, they're ready to fire everyone and bench the quarterback (see Tom Brady, Week 4 of this season). True, many fan bases are like that but they take it to a new extreme of obnoxiousness.

Seahawks fans aren't much better. Many didn't know Seattle had an NFL team until they started winning and now they act like they are sophisticated devotees of the game. The scientific name for such people is "bandwagoners." This is the same fan base that saw some people flee the NFC title game when the Seahawks were losing, only to be trapped outside the stadium and denied reentry when they staged a comeback. Serves them right. It's a shame that one of these fan bases will be happy Sunday night but a comfort that the other will be miserable. Feel free to fire back, Patriots and Seahawks fans: kandreeky@gmail.com.

FAN OBSESSION: One 21-year-old Patriots fan got this tattoo while vacationing in Bali:

Brady tattoo


THE PORN ANGLE:
There is no more fun or colorful player in the game than Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski (Seattle's Richard Sherman is just loud and often annoying). The Gronk loves to party and show off his body:

Gronk espn

And pose with a porn star he just had sex with:

Gronk porn


And inadvertently show his butt crack on national TV:

gronk butt1


And, most adorably, pose with a kitten for ESPN:

Gronk kitten


HIS FAVORITE POSITION:
We got this gem from Seahawks defensive lineman Michael Bennett: "It's always good when you're on top. (long pause) Even when you're at home with the ladies."

THE GAY ANGLE: Both teams play in states where same-sex marriage is legal. Massachusetts was the first state to legalize gay marriage in 2004, by a ruling of the state Supreme Court. In Washington state, the legislator passed and the governor signed a law in 2012 allowing such unions. The voters upheld the law at the ballot box.

Patriots owner Bob Kraft has long been a gay rights supporter. Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson had this to say when Michael Sam came out publicly as gay: "He's very courageous to come out and talk about it. You have a lot of respect for somebody that can do that," Wilson said. "If he's on our team, I know that we'll treat him with utmost respect just like everybody else."

At the Super Bowl two years ago when San Francisco 49ers defensive back Chris Culliver made anti-gay remarks, Seahawks punter Jon Ryan tweeted: "If Chris Culliver isn't suspended by Goodell then I am absolutely embarrassed to be part of a league that accepts this type of behavior."

And in an absolutely adorable moment, this is how a 17-year-old came out to his mom, a Seahawks fan, during a game this season:

I walked in, my mom is in her uniform, her jersey, her Seahawks jersey, screaming at the TV, "Go Hawks, no, no!" And I walk in just crying and she just stops everything, literally goes into mama bear mode, "What happened? Are you okay? What's going on?" Hugs me, hugs me, hugs me.

I'm like, "Mom, I'm gay."

She's like, "Oh, honey, honey, that's fine, but can we just wait till commercial?"


GRABBING HIS BALLS: Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch is known as "Beast Mode" for his aggressive style of running. He hates talking to the media, having been fined $100,000 this season for refusing to answer questions. In the past month, he has twice grabbed his crotch on national TV after scoring touchdowns, getting him fined a total of $35,000. He's a weird dude.

lynchcrotch2


ENTERTAINMENT: Idina Menzel, of "Let It Go" fame from"Frozen," will sing the national anthem. John Legend will sing "America the Beautiful." Las Vegas sports books will let you bet on whether Menzel will sing the national anthem in 2:02.5 minutes or less.

Halftime entertainment will be Katy Perry. I was driving through the Rockies last summer with a friend who had a mix tape on a continuous loop, so Perry's "Birthday," "Roar" and "Unconditionally" are indelibly etched in my brain.

THE COMMERCIALS: NBC is charging $4.5 million per 30-second ad. There are a zillion sites where you can preview the ads and they always bore me, so I'll stop here.

FOR THE EYES: Seahawks backup tight end Cooper Helfet is a model and did a great spread for Moda & Estilo, including this shot of him with a pooch:

cooper helfedt
(Moda & Estilo)

The best-looking Patriot is backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo:

Jimmy Garropolo
(USA TODAY photo)

Other hotties are: Gronk (naturally); Julian Edelman, and Devin McCourty (Patriots); Kam Chancellor, Luke Willson (with shorter hair) and Doug Baldwin (Seahawks). Of course, both kickers are total cuties -- Stephen Gostkowski (Patriots) and Steven Hauschka (Seahawks).

THE GAME: These are my least-favorite teams so I have no real rooting interest. But in a football sense this is the best matchup the game could have. Both defenses are terrific, the special teams are even and offensively each is flawed; the Patriots struggle to run against everyone but the Colts and Seattle's passing game is hit or miss.

The biggest mismatch is Seattle's average passing attack vs. the Patriots formidable secondary, led by cornerback Darrelle Revis. Seattle's receivers are nothing special and I can't see them getting open with any consistency. Russell Wilson will have to make plays by scrambling and hope the coverage breaks down. Seattle will be able to run with Marshawn Lynch and riding him long and hard is the Seahawks best hope of moving the ball.

I don't think the Patriots will be able to run and so it will come down to Seattle's "Legion of Boom" secondary being able to stop Tom Brady and his receivers. The Patriots offense is keyed by Gronk and if the Seahawks can consistently shut him down, this puts more pressure on their wide receivers. Seattle got no pass rush against a gimpy Aaron Rodgers in the NFC Championship Game, and this is a must against Brady, who tends to get really nervous when facing consistent pressure.

Two keys will be the health of Seattle defensive back Richard Sherman and safety Earl Thomas, both of whom have injuries. If they are less than 100%, expect Bill Belichick to devise a game plan to attack them.

THE PICK: The Patriots are 3-2 in Super Bowls under Belichick. They won all three by three points each and lost the two by three and four points. I expect this one to be just as close but think Seattle's inability to pass the ball will be the deciding edge. Patriots again by a field goal. Patriots 23, Seahawks 20.