On Sunday, the Denver Broncos' best-in-the-league offense will take on the Seattle Seahawks' best-in-the-league defense in Super Bowl XLVIII at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey.
But before the fireworks begin, we're taking a look back at some choice moments and personalities from the previous 47 Super Bowls, along with a preamble to No. 48.
1. 'Broadway Joe Namath'
In the top photo, New York Jets quarterback Joe Namath prepares to throw the football during the Super Bowl III game against the Baltimore Colts at the Orange Bowl stadium in Miami on Jan. 12, 1969, becoming the first AFL team to defeat an NFL club in an AFL-NFL World Championship Game. Namath had publicly guaranteed victory over the Colts. In the lower photo above he is seen in Queens, N.Y., on December 21, 1972. Namath is one the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history.
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2. Joe Montana
Joseph Clifford “Joe” Montana of the San Francisco 49ers lead his team to four Super Bowl wins and was named MVP three times. In the 1981 photo above, Montana prepares to throw another game-winning touchdown pass at Super Bowl XXIII.
3. Miami Dolphins' Perfect 17-0 Season
In the top photo, a smiling Miami Dolphins coach Don Shula is carried off the field after his team achieves a 14-7 victory over the Washington Redskins at Super Bowl VII in Los Angeles, on Jan. 14, 1973, culminating a perfect 17-0 season. (It hasn't happened for any team since.) That remains the lowest-scoring Super Bowl to date with a total of only 21 points (3 touchdown and 3 extra points).
In the lower photo, Miami Dolphins running back Larry Csonka shakes hands with a Gulfport dolphin leaping from the Fontainebleau Motor Hotel swimming pool in New Orleans as running back Jim Kiick and dolphin trainer Bob Cordin look on. They visited the hotel during Super Bowl VI week on Jan. 10, 1972.
4. Jack Lambert, Linebacker on Four Super Bowl-Winning Teams
Above is a 1977 photo of linebacker Jack Lambert of the Pittsburgh Steelers. Known for his ferocious tackling ability, Lambert played on four Super Bowl-winning teams during his 11-year career.
5. Failure to Launch, 1970
In this photo of Super Bowl IV at Tulane Stadium in New Orleans on Jan. 12, 1970, the game between the Minnesota Vikings and Kansas City Chiefs was preceded by a balloon race. One balloon marked AFL was manned by a person dressed in full American Indian regalia (representing the Chiefs) and another balloon marked NFL was piloted by a man wearing a Viking outfit. Unfortunately, the Vikings balloon took off prematurely, gained only a few feet in altitude, and crashed into the seats after drifting into the end zone. (The Vikings lost the game, too.) The game’s halftime show included a recreation of the 1812 Battle of New Orleans, but the horses ran amok.
6. Emmit Smith
Dallas Cowboys running back Emmit Smith, left, and wide receiver Michael Irvin celebrate their victory over the Buffalo Bills in Super Bowl XXVII, in Pasadena, Calif., on Jan. 31, 1993. One of the greatest running backs for the Cowboys, Smith played on three Super Bowl-winning teams. Still the NFL's all-time leading rusher, Smith announced his retirement on Feb. 3, 2005. After spending the previous two seasons with the Arizona Cardinals, the 15-year NFL veteran signed a ceremonial contract with the Cowboys so he could retire as a member of the team where he spent his first 13 seasons.
7. No Contest, 1992
Washington Redskins defensive end Charles Mann compares muscles with television personality Julie Brown on Jan. 22, 1992, during the Super Bowl XXVI media day at the Metrodome in Minneapolis. Washington played the Buffalo Bills for the NFL championship that Sunday, defeating the Bills by the score of 37-24, becoming the fourth team after the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Oakland Raiders, and the San Francisco 49ers to win three Super Bowls.
8. Jerry Rice
Jerry Rice of the San Francisco 49ers was one of the team’s great receivers and played on four Super Bowl-winning teams. In the photo above, Rice signals victory after scoring his touchdown in Super Bowl XXIII. Rice, who broke two Super Bowl records, was voted the Most Valuable Player of the game. He is now widely considered to be the greatest wide receiver in the history of the NFL and was ranked No.1 in the Top 100: NFL's Greatest Players.
9. Brett Favre the Favorite
Green Bay quarterback Brett Favre celebrates with guard Aaron Taylor (#73) after throwing an 81-yard touchdown pass against the New England Patriots during Super Bowl XXXI at the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans on Jan. 26, 1997. The 81-yard touchdown pass set a Super Bowl record for the longest touchdown reception.
10. Super Bowl XXXVI: Remembering 9/11
In the top photo, fans file into the Superdome on Sunday, Feb. 3, 2002, before the start of Super Bowl XXXVI featuring the St. Louis Rams vs. New England Patriots.
In the lower photo, at U2's Super Bowl XXXVI halftime performance, the names of those killed in the Sept. 11 attacks are projected on a giant screen as glowsticks wave in the crowd.
The New England Patriots won, defeating the St. Louis Rams 20-17.
11. Kurt Warner the Wonder
In the top photo, St. Louis Rams quarterback Kurt Warner celebrates after his Rams defeated the Tennessee Titans 23-16 to win Super Bowl XXXIV in Atlanta, Ga., on Jan. 30, 2000. Warner was named the game's Most Valuable Player. In the lower photo, Warner holds the Lombardi Trophy at the conclusion of Super Bowl XXXIV.
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12. And Now, Super Bowl XLVIII
Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll, left, and Denver Broncos head coach John Fox pose before speaking at a news conference on Friday, Jan. 31, 2014, in New York. The Seahawks and the Broncos will play in the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game on Sunday, Feb. 2, at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.
13. Waiting is the Hardest Part
Blitz, right, the Seattle Seahawks mascot, sits with Miles, left, the Denver Broncos mascot, on Friday, Jan. 31, 2014, atop a Super Bowl sign during a live broadcast of "Good Morning America" at Times Square in New York.
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