Super Bowl 2018: Everything You Need to Know Ahead of the Big Game!
By Desiree Murphy
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Super Bowl LII weekend is finally here!
From the diehard celebrity fans who will be tuning in, to the best commercials to watch out for, ET's rounded up everything you need to know ahead of the big game!
Where to watch: Super Bowl LII kicks off live from the U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on Sunday, Feb. 4 at 6:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. PT on NBC. Fans can also livestream the game on NBCsports.com or watch using the NBC Sports or NFL apps. If you're planning on hosting your own party with friends, head to the Tostitos website to create an epic, personalized invitation. Then, digitally send it out to all your football pals!
Who is playing?: The NFL championship game will be a match between the New England Patriots (AFC) and Philadelphia Eagles (NFC). This marks the 10th Super Bowl appearance for the Patriots (the most of any team), and the third for the Eagles. The Pats were 2001, 2003, 2004, 2014 and 2016 season champs, while the Eagles have yet to claim a Super Bowl title.
If you still aren't sure who to root for, take this quiz from ESPN.com to find out.
Who's announcing?: Al Michaels and Chris Collinsworth, with Michele Tafoya on the sidelines.
Who is singing the national anthem?: As part of the pregame festivities, Pink will be belting out "The Star-Spangled Banner" on the football field. This marks her first-ever Super Bowl appearance, following in the footsteps of female artists like Christina Aguilera, Lady Gaga, Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey, who have previously taken the mic on America's biggest stage.
Luke Bryan, who sang the national anthem ahead of last year's game, offered some advice to the pop star while chatting with ET earlier this month.
"Pink is one of the best singers on planet Earth and I know she's going to do an unbelievable job with the national anthem," he gushed. "It's pretty nerve-wracking, I'm sure she'll kill it though. She's been on the big stage for a lot of years, certainly even more than me, so I know she'll do great and good luck, Pink."
Who is doing the coin toss?: Ahead of the official on-field coin toss, the NFL will salute 15 Medal of Honor recipients. Then, World War II veteran Hershel Woodrow "Woody" Williams, who received the United States' most prestigious military decoration for his heroism during the Battle of Iwo Jima, will flip the coin to determine which team will kick off first.
Who will be performing the Pepsi Super Bowl Halftime Show?: Get ready for a stellar show from Justin Timberlake! The 37-year-old singer will be performing a 13-minute set, featuring dance moves created by his longtime choreographer, Marty Kudelka.
A source told ET earlier this week that Timberlake is spending eight to 10 hours a day in rehearsals in preparation for his highly anticipated show.
This marks Timerlake's third Super Bowl halftime appearance. His first halftime show was in 2001, as part of *NSYNC, alongside Britney Spears, Aerosmith, Mary J. Blige and Nelly. He appeared again in 2004 with Janet Jackson, when the now infamous "wardrobe malfunction" occurred.
Will there be any surprises?: Ever since Timberlake was announced as the halftime performer, fans have been speculating who he may bring out as a special guest. Some are hoping to see him team up with Jackson again, while others have their fingers crossed for an *NSYNC reunion.
"Super Bowl halftime show? Yes! Of course [I'd be down,]" Lance Bass told ET of the idea last October. "Give us a call, NFL. We're in. Let's do a medley of all the best performances of the past."
As for a reunion with Jackson? A source close to the "Rhythm Nation" singer told ET it's not totally out of the question. "The door is wide open," the source explained. "If Justin or his team did reach out, Janet would perform with him again in a minute."
One thing's for sure -- if they do perform together again, there will not be another wardrobe malfunction. In fact, Timberlake promised that during an interview on NBC Sunday Night Football last year. "That won't happen this time," he joked.
Other fans are wondering if Chris Stapleton will join Timberlake on Sunday, as the two recently collaborated on "Say Something." The track is off Timberlake's latest album, Man of the Woods, which is set for release just two days before his Super Bowl performance. Interesting timing, indeed, but there's no confirmation that the country star will perform with JT at this time.
Predictions: According to the majority of sports analysts, the Patriots are favored to win on Sunday. "I'll take the team with the greatest head coach/quarterback combination in NFL history against the team with its backup QB in the lineup," Mike Sando, a senior writer for NFL.com predicts. "With Brady, the Patriots have the ability to play from well behind and still win. That separates New England."
We also polled our online staff. Here's who football fans at Entertainment Tonight think will take the Vince Lombardi Trophy:
55% voted Eagles
45% voted Patriots
Managing editor Ann Donahue jokes that the Patriots will win by 21 points "because they cheat," while producer Meredith Loftus believes the Eagles will be victorious with a field goal within the last 30 seconds of the game. "It's time for the underdogs to win," she exclaims.
Writer Alex Ungerman, who would "honestly love an Eagles upset" but doesn't think it's going to happen, has a much more detailed prediction: "What I expect to happen is that the Eagles play right with the Patriots, and are maybe even beating them early, but will start to play safe in the fourth quarter. [Patriots quarterback] Tom Brady will be Tom Brady, and [Eagles quarterback] Nick Foles will find himself seven points down trying to mount a comeback. There will be some turnover that seals another Super Bowl for the evil empire."
Most Valuable Player Award: Most fans are predicting Tom Brady to win the trophy yet again this year for the Patriots, or Nick Foles for the Eagles. Other potentials include Rob Gronkowski, Danny Amendola or Brandin Cooks for the Pats, and Jay Ajayi, Zach Ertz or Alshon Jeffery for the Eagles. For the full list of previous MVP winners, click HERE.
Commercials: Aside from the actual game and the halftime show, one of the most memorable parts of every Super Bowl is the commercials. A few of our favorites this year include celebrity-endorsed ads from Stella Artois and Water.org with Matt Damon, Groupon featuring Tiffany Haddish, Michelob Ultra starring Chris Pratt, and Morgan Freeman and Peter Dinklage fighting over Doritos and Mountain Dew.
Biggest celebrity fans: Kobe Bryant, Bradley Cooper and Pink will certainly be on the edge of their seats on Sunday, all decked out in black, midnight green and silver in support of the Eagles. The "What About Us" singer couldn't contain her excitement when she found out her hometown NFL team was heading to the Super Bowl, tweeting, "Ummm. I'm singing the national anthem and the EAGLES ARE PLAYING?!?!?! IS THIS FOR REAL?!?!?! THATS WHASSUP!!!!!!!!"
Ummm. I’m singing the national anthem and the EAGLES ARE PLAYING?!?!?! IS THIS FOR REAL?!?!?!THATS WHASSUP!!!!!!!! Shtjtkd widnamc ckamcnsnzncbx!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Wooohooooooooooooioooooooooooooooooooooooooiiiiiiooooooooooo