NFL insider reveals reason Super Bowl field was so slippery
The NFL has faced a great deal of criticism over the quality of the playing surface at Super Bowl LVII, and there have been several explanations offered for why players were slipping all over the field. Apparently the halftime show may have been one factor.
Ian Rapoport of NFL Media discussed the State Farm Stadium turf issues during a Monday appearance on “The Pat McAfee Show.” He noted that players seemed to struggle to keep their footing even more in the second half. Rapoport was told that was a result of the staging and other equipment from Rihanna’s massive halftime show making the grass too compact.
“The second half was worse. The halftime show, which basically spanned the entire field, it pressed the grass, heated it up and got it slick,” Rapoport explained. “It basically increased the moisture in the grass because it didn’t allow it to breathe and pressed down on the grass. Then you take the halftime show off the grass and it’s a little bit wetter, and in the third quarter everybody was sliding around.”
You can hear more of the explanation below, but beware that the clip contains inappropriate language:
— Pat McAfee (@PatMcAfeeShow) February 13, 2023
The halftime show may have made the problem worse, but the slipping started well before that. Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts even switched cleats between the first and second quarters because of the field conditions.
FOX’s Terry Bradshaw mentioned at halftime that the playing surface was slick from being painted. The slipping did seem to be worse on painted areas, as you can see in the video below:
The field conditions at the Super Bowl were an issue and frankly embarrassing considering the magnitude of the game. These are just some examples. pic.twitter.com/Qd7Wjk8WgS
— Brandon Thorn (@BrandonThornNFL) February 13, 2023
The turf may not have had a direct impact in the Kansas City Chiefs’ 38-35 win over the Eagles, but players were not happy about it. Whether it was the result of the halftime show or other factors, the NFL obviously needs to be certain it never happens again, especially on the league’s biggest stage.