Super Bowl LIII glossary: Every term you need to know

Super Bowl week is here. As a primer, here's a glossary of terms to get you up to speed before the New England Patriots and Los Angeles Rams meet in Super Bowl LIII on Sunday. Approximately 90 percent of the content herein can be fairly described as "accurate." The rest is a mixture of hearsay and outright falsehoods.


Anderson, C.J.: Street free agent who signed with the Rams and proceeded to turn Los Angeles' backfield -- almost impossibly -- into a tag-team affair. Todd Gurley is on fire about this in a text chain with his high school friends. Anderson attributes his recent change in body shape to "that man pregnancy weight." (His wife is expecting.)

Atlanta: The capital of Georgia and host city of Super Bowl LIII. Region would have dissolved into ruinous toxic dystopia had 40,000 Saints fans invaded this weekend. Bullet dodged.


#BetAgainstUs: Regrettable attempt by Patriots players, fans and social media to paint the era's most dominant team as a scrappy underdog. This absurd bombast was ramped up ahead of the Patriots' eighth consecutive appearance in the AFC Championship Game, an irony seemingly lost on all parties involved.

Big Boi: The other guy from Outkast and guest performer during the halftime show. No, not the "Shake it like a polaroid picture" guy, the "I like the way you move" guy. Would be amazing if André 3000 showed up and they did a 12-minute extended version of "Bombs over Baghdad."

Belichick, Bill: Football's unstoppable grumpy genius. Has likely seen Bon Jovi in concert in excess of 12 times. The mere thought of losing consecutive Super Bowls could send him floating into the abyss aboard VII Rings.

Brady, Tom:Unkillable superstar quarterback for the ages. Reportedly walked into the Patriots facility last week, and said "I am the baddest (expletive) on the planet," which, on the surface, seems really cool, but then you have to imagine him actually saying it.

Brown, Trent: Left tackle and blindside protector for Mr. Brady, Brown is the anchor of an excellent offensive line that deserves a huge amount of credit for New England's postseason surge. Expect to see thousands of Joe Thuney jerseys in the stands on Super Bowl Sunday.


Chick-fil-A: Popular fast-food chain that, citing company tradition, will keep its location inside Mercedes-Benz Stadium closed on Super Bowl Sunday. Side note: If I could undergo a radical surgery to replace my blood with Chick-fil-A Sauce, I'd roll the dice to see if it gives me superpowers. (Spoiler alert: I'd die.)

Cooks, Brandin:Rams wide receiver who averaged 1,150 yards and seven touchdowns over the past four seasons and somehow managed to play for three teams in that span. Last year was spent with the Patriots, who, if we're being honest, should have never traded him in the first place. Can you say REVENGE GAME?


Donald, Aaron: The NFL's most dominant defensive player, a deserving MVP contender, and the Rams' best chance at sending the Patriots home with their fourth Super Bowl loss of the Belichick era. Donald vs. the Patriots' wall of protection is the matchup to watch in this game. Oh, you didn't expect actual football analysis here? Shame on you!


Edelman, Julian: Very good possession receiver who turns into Jerry Rice in the first five weeks of each calendar year. Attempted to profit off Patriots' inane #BetAgainstUs (see above) schtick by selling T-shirts for $29.99 on his website.


Fassel, John:Rams special teams coordinator affectionately known as "Bones" for his willowy frame. Once saved a man from drowning in the Pacific Ocean, which is a really solid résumé line once he starts to interview for head-coaching gigs. "The sea was angry that day, my friends ... ."

Feely, Jay: Former NFL placekicker currently employed by CBS in the role of sideline kicking analyst. From a heavy lifting standpoint, this continues to be the coveted position in professional broadcasting.

Ford, Dee: His fateful mistake, lining up offsides on a crucial third down in the AFC Championship Game, wiped out a Rob Gronkowski drop and Tom Brady interception that would have clinched the Chiefs' first trip to the Super Bowl in almost 50 years. That'll stick with ya. Some poor British lady with the same name has been getting crushed on Twitter. Life is just terrible sometimes.

Fowler, Dante: Killer midseason trade acquisition for the Rams whose hit on Drew Brees led to the game-changing interception in overtime of the NFC title match. This fantastically timed hurry will add millions to Fowler's bank account come free agency. Sports are funny like that.


Goff, Jared:Rams quarterback who went from possible first-round bust to the Super Bowl in two years. Earned initial doubt after admitting to the world on "Hard Knocks" in 2016 that he didn't know where the sun rises, but, c'mon, you're not 100 percent sure, either.

Gronkowski, Rob: Lovable lug and future Hall of Famer who might be playing in his final game on Sunday. Likely future Slim Jim spokesman. Emerged from the wilderness to become a key target for Brady against the Chiefs, though Gronk loyalists are quick to remind you that his BLOCKING HAS NEVER BEEN BETTER.

Gurley, Todd: One of the top 10 players in the NFL, though he also struggled in the NFC Championship Game and is now locked in a bizarre backfield timeshare with a street free agent carrying "that man pregnancy weight." Likely still dealing with a knee injury that we won't learn more about until the Monday after Super Bowl.


Hekker, Johnny: Giant Punter Man and legitimate football player who's become adept at both booming directional kicks and reliably entertaining fake-punt shenanigans. A longtime object of Bill Belichick's affection, which probably makes Patriots punter Ryan Allen extremely self-conscious.



Johnson, John:Rams safety who became the first target of "Super Bowl bulletin board material" when he said it will be an honor to play against Tom Brady but added that the quarterback is "definitely beatable." Which, I mean, is just a fact. Tom Brady has lost 70 games as a starting quarterback in the regular season and playoffs since 2001. He is definitely beatable.


Knight, Gladys: Atlanta native and "Empress of Soul" (epic nickname!) who will perform the "Star Spangled Banner" prior to kickoff. "Midnight Train To Georgia" is an eternal jam.

Kraft, Robert: Mega-successful Patriots owner who is coming for Jerry Jones' corner in the category of most owner-suite cutaways during game telecasts.


Levine, Adam: Maroon 5 lead singer and contest judge who will do 99.4 percent of the talking during Thursday's Halftime Show press conference. That number could move downward if his bandmates are permitted to join him on stage.

Lombardi Trophy: Still the best championship trophy of any of the four major North American sports. Get outta here with your germ-infested Stanley Cup. Just because you can drink out of it doesn't make it better. Being more versatile does not constitute a better trophy.


McDaniels, Josh: Longtime Patriots offensive coordinator who walked out on a handshake deal to become head coach of the Colts last year. Andrew Luck's comeback and the Colts' subsequent success in 2018 has left McDaniels with quiet anguish and horrifying nightmares.

McVay, Sean: Boy Genius and shimmering archetype by which all other head coaches are measured. You get the feeling Belichick wants to go full Ed Norton in "Fight Club." I felt like destroying something beautiful. Good news: Like you, McVay had a questionable haircut in college:

Michel, Sony: The latest in an army of deeply productive Patriots running backs who would dissolve like "Avengers" superheroes if they played anywhere but New England.


Nantz, Jim: America's Well-Meaning Dad and CBS' top play-by-play voice, Nantz's booth role for NFL games is to drop dimes like John Stockton for superstar partner Tony Romo. Friend of Tom Brady who, during the Patriots-Steelers telecast in December, slipped and called the quarterback "Mr. Cool." That's not a thing.


Opening Night: Carnival of flesh where human worth is decided by whether or not you are granted a riser podium. Being packed like sardines around these lecterns reminds you that a) Cameramen have a God complex, and b) not enough people use the right kind of deodorant.


Payton, Sean: Longtime Saints coach who believes his destiny was stolen by game officials in the NFC title game. Has not slept in over a week. He'll take a coaching job with the AAF's Orlando Apollos before watching professional football on Sunday.

Phillips, Wade: Universally adored Rams assistant coach looking to win his second Super Bowl as defensive coordinator in four years. Answers the question of what your grandfather would be like on Twitter.



Robey-Coleman, Nickell: NRC might need to intercept Tom Brady 23 times on Sunday for his career not to be remembered solely for what happened in the NFC Championship Game.

Romo, Tony: Former Cowboys quarterback and current CBS analyst currently enjoying unprecedented victory lap after a seer-like performance in the AFC Championship Game. Under a sneaky amount of pressure in Super Bowl LIII from an audience that will expect Nostradamus-level insight.


Saints Fans: They are not OK right now.

Snead, Les:Rams GM who survived five straight losing seasons, a move to Los Angeles and Jeff Fisher. A fine example of the merits of ORGANIZATIONAL FORBEARANCE. If he pursued acting, Snead would be cast as a ruggedly handsome pro football executive.


The World's Best: New CBS competition reality series that will premiere immediately following Super Bowl telecast. The latest in an ongoing Hollywood initiative to give every celebrity their own show to judge. You're up, Drew Barrymore.




White, James: Anything fewer than 25 catches on Sunday will be considered a bitter disappointment.

Whitworth, Andrew: Gigantic left tackle who escaped from Cincinnati and now gets to play in his first Super Bowl at age 37. I literally just had a vision of a beaming Whitworth walking across a confetti-strewn field with two of his children in his arms. Wonder if that means anything.




Zolak, Scott: Excitable Patriots radio bro who will run nude through the streets of Atlanta if Tom Brady wins another Super Bowl.

Zuerlein, Greg: Kicker who drilled a 57-yard field goal to send the Rams to the Super Bowl. Curiously, Zuerlein received little press coverage after the most impressive field-goal conversion since Adam Vinatieri in the Snow Game. Being an NFL place kicker is a fundamentally unfair profession.

Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @danhanzus.

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