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After surviving a regular NFL season that required flexible operations and new remote production techniques due to the COVID-19 pandemic, CBS is geared up to cover what should be a unique Super Bowl LV with an array of new camera angles and AR graphics.
This Sunday’s game at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla., which features an epic matchup between 43-year-old quarterback legend Tom Brady of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and 25-year-old phenom Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs, will mark the first time a Super Bowl has been played at one team’s home stadium. It will also represent the smallest attendance ever for the Big Game, with a projected crowd of around only 22,000 (15,000 ticket holders and 7,500 vaccinated health care workers who were awarded free seats by the NFL).
The week of the Super Bowl is usually full of meetings and dinners, both among CBS production staff and with NFL owners, league executives and players. But none of that is happening this year. CBS Sports Chairman Sean McManus is flying in today (Thursday, Feb. 4) and immediately undergoing a COVID test, then will spend much of the remaining time before kickoff in his hotel room. Instead of watching the game from inside the lead production truck, he will watch from an office while remaining in communication with Harold Bryant, CBS Sports executive producer and EVP, production. Likewise, lead announcer Jim Nantz and analyst Tony Romo will also remain apart until meeting Sunday in the booth.