Despite the NFL spending $1.16 million to develop a field for State Farm that took 11 months to grow, the surface for Super Bowl LVII was still notably inadequate, with Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes going down late in the first half with an injured ankle. .
Social media exploded about the subpar conditions, with the field clearly tearing up the middle on the telecast.
Players from both sides were sliding on the turf, which had been prepared by a local turf grower in Phoenix.
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It is kept on a tray the size of a football pitch a meter deep that can be rolled in and out of the pitch as required, similar to the drop-down pitches used in most cricket grounds across Australia, with the exception of the SCG.
However, the abundance of NFL logos painted on the field seems to be responsible for the players slipping, as former managers GM Scott Pioli noticed the size of the Super Bowl logos.
Pioli said on Twitter that slipping on the painted areas of the field is “not uncommon on the turf”.
“The Super Bowl logos are huge and cover almost all of the turf between the hashes from the 17-yard line to the 33-yard line,” said Pioli.
“It feels like a lot more polish than usual.
“Potential player security problem?”
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Australian Eagles linebacker Jordan Melata revealed both teams were talking to each other about the “terrible” field during the game.
“It was like playing in a water park,” he said.
Another key moment in the first half saw Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker miss a 42-yard field goal, kicking upright and missed with the score tied at 7-7, appearing to slide on the colorful Super Bowl logo while taking the kick.
Kicker Jake Elliott also fell behind on his attempted field goal early in the fourth quarter.
Former Pittsburgh QB Terry Bradshaw criticized the NFL for “painting the entire field,” as Eagles QB Jalen Hurts changed his cleats in order to deal with the slippery surface.
Hurts didn’t seem to be holding back, as he became the first quarterback in Super Bowl history to catch three rushing touchdowns in a game to tie the game at 35-35 with 5 minutes remaining on a 2-point conversion.
Mahomes returned to the game after getting treatment for his injured ankle, leading the Chiefs to a 38–35 comeback win from 182 yards, the franchise’s third Super Bowl and second with Mahomes at the helm.
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