The game is played in cleats, but that hasn't stopped American Football from stacking up a sneaker story rich with 80s sleaze and 90s cheese! With the Pats and Giants drawing up plans for their second big dance, we take a look at history's best Super Bowl sneaker moments through some classic ads that have to be seen to be believed!
Dan Marino x PONY
Dan Marino only had one trip to the big dance, when he went down blazing in a shootout against Joe Montana in Super Bowl XIX. But when you can look as cool as he did in this Miami Vice inspired ad for PONY, who cares about rings? Besides, how many Ace Ventura movies did Montana star in? We're calling this one for Dapper Dan!
Jim McMahon x adidas
Who doesn't love the '85 Bears? One of the most colourful casts to ever raise a Super Bowl trophy, the team was marshalled on the field by livelier quarterback Jim McMahon who seemed to spend every waking minute wearing a billboard-sized adidas headband. It's fair to say that his 'Mr adidas' range of signature apparel will be less fondly remembered.
Walter Payton x KangaROOS
The late Walter Payton was one of the greatest running backs of all time. Another member of the legendary '85 Bears, this Kangaroos poster features his fetching the mail at his front gate... in his black Lamborghini Countach. Pure 'sweetness'!
After pushing the Jets to an unlikely Superbowl victory over the heavily-favoured Ravens, Joe Namath's on-field scoring ability was unquestioned through a 12-year career. Recognising there was no point elaborating on his football skills, Puma instead mythicised Namath's legendary off-field scoring abilities. Long before the Suzy Kolber incident, Broadway Joe was at his most comfortable with a blonde, a fresh pair of Pumas and a sheepish grin.
Deion Sanders & Jerry Jones x Nike
If you can't beat 'em, buy 'em. Jerry Jones splashed the cash in the 1995 season to steal Deion Prime Time Sanders from San Francisco after the 49ers cornerback played a pivotal role in foiling the Cowboys' '94 campaign. A clever tongue-in-cheek take on the drama 'Dallas', this ad showcases the Air DT Max and marks one of the earliest instances of Nike flexing their marketing muscle on the gridiron.
Brett Favre x Starter
The '96 NFL season was a road to redemption for Brett Favre, culminating in a dominant Super Bowl display which included an 81 yard touchdown pass. The Packers were dressed that year in Starter, which created a series of seriously funny ads featuring Brett and a fictitious family of Favre-obsessed neighbours. Legal action was later taken by Converse against Starter's use of the star logo on their footwear, which explains why you've probably never seen these sneaks before.
Bo Jackson x Nike
Bo knows this, and Bo knows that. Phife may have famously doubted Bo's skills on the mic, but who needs to rap when you're a bicep-pumping, soccer-playing, formula-one-driving, baseball-playing running back?! Doing it all in a pair of Nike Air SC Trainers, Bo might have never won a Super Bowl, but he dominated the Tecmo Bowl. And that's good enough for us.
Vince Lombardi & Barry Sanders x Nike
No mention of the Superbowl is complete without Vince Lombardi. Immortalised by Jerry Stiller, the man they named the trophy after is re-cast as the coach of Barry Sanders; when Sanders loses a shoe, Lombardi marvels at the running back's ability to outmanoeuvre the defense – in only one Nike Barry Sanders Zoom Turf! How do they stop that roller coaster when he's wearing both of em?
Terry Tate: Office Linebacker x Reebok
When staff productivity is waning, Felcher & Sons let Terry Tate loose! Reebok's legendary commercial aired during Super Bowl XXXVII, spawning countless follow-up episodes as Tate whipped the office into shape, declaring game time is pain time!
Joe Montana x LA Gear
Joe Montana made all the right moves during the 80s, winning four Super Bowl rings with the San Francisco 49ers. Cool Joe's sure footing started to slip in the 90s though when he became the spokes-quarterback for LA Gear. It was like taking a sack from good taste!