Quarterbacks Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs and Brock Purdy of the San Francisco 49ers are both fierce competitors. But when they square off in the Super Bowl on Sunday, it also will be a matchup between two Christians.
Mahomes, an evangelical Christian, bends on one knee before kickoff and says a prayer.
“My Christian faith plays a role in everything that I do,” he says, according to the “Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal.” “I always ask God to lead me in the right direction and let me be who I am for his name. So it has a role in everything that I do. Obviously, we’ll be on that huge stage in the Super Bowl that he’s given me, and I want to make sure I’m glorifying him while I do it.”
Purdy recently shared his faith after the 49ers defeated the Detroit Lions in the NFC championship game.
“Honestly, I think it’s just a testament to God and where he’s taken me in life,” he said. “I’ve never been the biggest, the fastest, the strongest or any of that. I feel like I’ve always had to sort of fight for what I get and work for what I get. But God’s always given me an opportunity, whether that was in high school, college and then obviously in the NFL.
“Getting drafted last, people overlook you and all that kind of stuff, and then all you need is an opportunity and watch and see what he does. I put my faith and trust in him and he’s gotten me where I am.”
But with such high-profile expressions of faith comes greater responsibility, say many of their fans. Mahomes was criticized for being drunk at the last Super Bowl Parade in Kansas City.
For his part, Purdy, who volunteers in Christian ministries and leads Bible studies, has walked the talk, say fans.
Both will have no greater opportunity for public witness than the Super Bowl
The event, part game, concert, and modern gladiatorial arena, consistently attracts one of the largest TV audiences in the United States. Advertisers pay significant amounts for commercial slots during the game, leading to the creation of high-budget, entertaining commercials. The halftime show also features top musical acts, if rarely wholesome, further adding to the spectacle.
Off the field, there will be plenty of religion to see as well. The religious brand platform “He Gets Us” said it plans to return to the Super Bowl. The ads — a campaign to promote Jesus and Christianity — sparked a lot of buzz and some controversy last year and are sure to do so again this time.
Bill McKendry, founder and chief creative officer at BrandHaven, confirmed that “He Gets Us” plans to advertise during the game but that the organization was “waiting for a final cut of the commercials before doing any interviewing.”
At the same time, amid increasing reports of antisemitism since the start of the Israel-Hamas war, New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft will help give the issue airtime during the game through his Foundation to Combat Antisemitism.
–Alan Goforth | Metro Voice