by Robert Ferringo
The Super Bowl stopped being a game a long time ago. Now, it is an event. Therefore, you can't approach your Super Bowl Party n the same manner that you would some semi-meaningless Week 7 game between the Texans and Browns.
No sir. You want your Super Bowl party to rock. And you want your party to be equipped for the fact that more than half of the Super Bowls ever played have been blowouts. And the best way to do that is to have several Super Bowl party games handy in case things get out of hand.
Depending on how rowdy or reckless your group is willing to be there are numerous drinking games at your disposal. Just remember to keep the rules simple, keep the rules light, and make sure they are clearly stated beforehand.
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But here are a few suggestions for Super Bowl party games that could help you maximize your viewing experience. Yes, all of my games involve either drinking or gambling. But what do you expect? If you aren't doing one or both of those things on Super Sunday you aren't really celebrating The Game:
Betting Superbowl Squares - Click Here for a printable grid:
This is a must-have. Basically, if you are at a party where you don't have betting squares you are a Communist. You can play for anywhere from $1 to $50 per square but the best way to go is generally to settle at $5 per square, giving you a $500 kitty. Just make sure that everyone knows to bring cash to the party. There's always one guy that wants to play on IOU or credit. Never works out.
Next, take a piece of paper or poster board and make a 10-by-10 grid. Or Doc's has one you can print - Click Here. On the top of the page write the name of one team. On the left-hand side write the name of the other team. After you collect people's money let him or her write their name on the grid. After all of the squares are filled you draw numbers out of a hat - using 0 through 9 - and fill them in one at a time on the outside rows both vertically and horizontally on the paper.
Those numbers represent the last number in the score and you have payouts at the end of the first quarter ($50), at halftime ($150), at the end of the third quarter ($50) and at the end of the game ($250). The numbers represent the last digit in the score at the end of each quarter. For instance, if the score was Giants 14, Patriots 9, then the person whose square is located at the intersection of "Giants 4" and "Patriots 9" wins the money.
The Pre-Game Football Game
Nothing gets the blood pumping and the testosterone going like a quick pick-up game of pigskin. All the males at the party should be in the mood for at least a light game of two-hand touch. If they are not, it's your duty to berate them and challenge their manhood at every opportunity during the evening. Also, before you spend four hours criticizing every coaching maneuver, every dropped pass, and every missed assignment it helps to be reminded of how tricky a game it can be.
Keyword Drinking Game
Before the start of the game you should make a list of about 10 words that you think you'll hear throughout the course of the game and assign a "drink value" to them. For instance, every time you hear the word "replay" you drink twice, the word "dynasty" you drink twice, "prediction" you drink once, and "touchdown" you drink once. Those are basic words, but if you want to up the degree of difficulty you could look for phrases like "felony assault", "wide right", "Super Bowl Shuffle", "Joe Namath", or any reference to anyone in the Manning family. Of course, the latter suggestion may leave you pretty rocked.
Write up the names of the key players in the game on both teams. Put the names in a hat and have everyone draw a name (or you could draw for an offensive and defensive player each if you don't have many bodies at your party). Every time that player is involved in a play you are able to pass out a drink. It's up to you whether or not to omit the quarterbacks since they are involved in every play. A touchdown is worth seven drinks for the player that scores it.
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A spin on this game is to have everyone put in a $1, $5, or $10 at the start of the game as well. If the player that they drew wins the Super Bowl MVP then they win the pot. If the MVP's name wasn't drawn you can either refund the money or choose another way to divvy it up.
Another variation on this game is to separate all of the people at the party for one team or the other. Each person puts in $20 and whichever team covers the spread, that "team" splits all of the money. That should keep the attention on the game into the fourth quarter!
And these final Super Bowl party games are straight from our man Stal Herz:
Pass the Cup
One of the classic Super Bowl games to play is pass the cup. Goes like this: If I'm holding the cup, I put a dollar in. If I say "touchdown" then for each play that is not a touchdown, the cup gets passed and another dollar gets dropped in. When a touchdown is scored, the person holding the cup gets the cash. Whoever holds the cup can make the rule, so you can do first downs, field goals, whatever you like.
Of course, the most important game on Super Bowl Sunday is "Hide the keys from your drunk friends so they don't get out on the road." If you can, video tape them and show that at your party next year. Police checkpoints are accelerated during Super Bowl Sunday, so make sure all of your madness stays inside of the house so you can play again next year.