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Things you may not know about the Super Bowl

The Roman numerals for Super Bowl XLVIII are unveiled on Super Bowl Boulevard in Times Square on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 in New York, NY (Credit: NFL/Perry Knotts/)Did you know there is a National Chicken Council?  I didn't.  They say we will eat 1.25 billion chicken wings during Super Bowl weekend, enough to stretch from Seattle to the New Jersey stadium where the game will be played—30 times.  We will consume 80 million avocados, enough to fill a football field 12 feet deep.  We will eat 11 million pounds of chips, the equivalent of more than 12 million footballs.  And Dominos will deliver 11 million pizza slices, the length of 21,388 football fields.

Some facts related to the game are more troubling.  Authorities have already seized $20 million in unlicensed Super Bowl paraphernalia.  A mass transit attack is seen as the greatest security risk associated with the game.  Here's the most disturbing Super Bowl fact: the game is one of the largest venues for human trafficking in the world.  According to the New Jersey Coalition Against Human Trafficking, "The Super Bowl attracts tens of thousands of fans to the host city . . . But it also attracts a sector of violence, organized criminal activity that operates in plain sight without notice including human trafficking in both the sex and labor industries."

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Cancer-stricken fan buys newspaper ad to cheer Broncos

Kara Christian, the Bronco Lady super fan, at the age of 51, trying out for the Denver Broncos cheerleader squad (Credit: Denver Post) Kara Christian has been a Denver Broncos fan since the age of five.  She even tried out to be a Broncos cheerleader at the age of 51.  (She didn't make the cut.)  

She waited nine years before finally receiving her season tickets in 1996.  Even though she worked out of state for the next nine years, she returned to Denver for as many games as she could.  When she couldn't make it back, she had friends send overnight parcels with VHS tapes of the broadcast.  A college professor, she warned students that she would fail them if they told her the outcome of the game before she watched the video.

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Seahawks' legally deaf fullback thanks God for blessings

Seahawks running back Derrick Coleman talks to students at Baker Middle School in Tacoma about how he's gained success despite a hearing impairment, December 10, 2013 (Credit: The News Tribune/Joe Barretine)Derrick Coleman, the first legally deaf offensive player in the National Football League, is one of the most uplifting stories of this year's Super Bowl.  Recently, a nine-year-old hearing-impaired girl wrote to thank him for being her "insperation" and said, "Just try your best.  I have faif in you."  Her father tweeted a photo of her note, which then generated more than 800,000 page views on  Derrick responded with a handwritten letter in which he said, "Even though we wear hearing aids, we can still accomplish our goals & dreams!"

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Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning's conversion

Peyton Manning, quarterback for the Denver Broncos, speaks to reporters at a press conference the Thursday following the AFC Championship game, January 23, 2014 (Credit: Denver Broncos)As this year's Super Bowl approaches, all eyes are on the weather.  Hall of Fame player Mike Ditka calls the decision to play the game outside in New Jersey "stupid."  Others think it's a "great idea."  As of this morning, the high on Sunday is forecast to be 36 degrees, with possible snow showers.

While some are watching conditions in the sky, this week we're thinking about the players on the ground.  Each day we'll discover the Christian commitment of one of the Super Bowl athletes.  Yesterday we learned the faith story of the Seattle Seahawks' quarterback, Russell Wilson; today we'll hear from Peyton Manning, quarterback of the Denver Broncos.

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Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson met Jesus in a dream

Russell Wilson (C), quarterback for the Seattle Seahawsk, celebrates victory in the 2014 NFC Championship game in Seattle with general manager, John Schneider (L), and coach Pete Carroll (R), in Seattle, January 19, 2014 (Credit: Seattle Seahawks/Rod Mar)The Seattle Seahawks will play the Denver Broncos in this Sunday's Super Bowl.  In a recent interview with Mars Hill Pastor Mark Driscoll, four Seahawks players and an assistant coach discussed their faith.  The coach stated that "Jesus is better than anything... even better than the Super Bowl, better than an NFL career, any of that."  Quarterback Russell Wilson was one of the players nodding in agreement.

There was a time when he wouldn't have been so affirming.  In a video titled "The Making of a Champion," Wilson says, "I was kind of a bad kid," explaining that "I used to beat up kids and bite kids and do stuff all the time."

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