1. Peyton Manning was the No. 1 overall pick in the 1998 draft and finally reaches the Super Bowl in his ninth NFL season. Manning will become the sixth QB selected No. 1 overall in the common draft era (since 1967) to start a Super Bowl. The last starting QB selected No. 1 overall to win a Super Bowl: Troy Aikman, when his Cowboys defeated the Steelers in Super Bowl XXX.
2. The Bears enter their second Super Bowl with aspirations of having the same type of dominance they had 21 years ago, when they defeated the Patriots 46-10 in Super Bowl XX, holding New England to minus-19 yards of total offense in the first half.
3. The Colts' high-powered offense becomes just the third to come to a Super Bowl armed with a 4,000-yard passer (Manning), two 1,000-yard receivers (Marvin Harrison and Reggie Wayne) and a 1,000-yard rusher (Joseph Addai). The St. Louis Rams boasted such an offense in 1999 and 2001.
4. Could this Super Bowl come down to a field goal attempt at the end of the game? If it does, Indianapolis' No. 4, Adam Vinatieri, has experience in this field. Vinatieri accounted for the game-winning points in each of the Patriots' three Super Bowl wins, including a game-winning 48-yard field goal as time expired in Super Bowl XXXVI and a game-winning 41-yard field goal with four seconds remaining in Super Bowl XXXVIII.
5. Just like Vinatieri, the Colts have experience with a last-second field goal to win a Super Bowl. In Super Bowl V, with the Baltimore Colts and the Dallas Cowboys tied at 13, rookie Jim O'Brien kicked a 32-yard field goal with five seconds remaining to give the Colts their only Super Bowl title.
6. Manning threw for 4,397 yards this season, his seventh career 4,000-yard season. When Manning starts Super Bowl XLI, it will mark just the sixth time a QB who threw for at least 4,000 yards started a Super Bowl in the same season.
7. The last time the Super Bowl was held in Miami, it was Denver's No. 7, John Elway, who stole the show in Super Bowl XXXIII. In his last NFL game, Elway threw for 336 yards, threw for a TD and ran for a TD in an MVP performance.
8. Chicago's No. 8, Rex Grossman, will join Matt Hasselbeck, Aikman, Steve Young and Trent Dilfer as Super Bowl starting QBs who wore No. 8. (Starting QBs who wore No. 8 are 5-1 in Super Bowls, with Hasselbeck and the Seahawks falling to the Steelers in Super Bowl XL).
9. This Super Bowl will be the ninth played in Miami (the city ties New Orleans for the most times hosting a Super Bowl). This is the Colts' third Super Bowl in franchise history, and all three times the Colts have played that game in Miami (Super Bowl III, Super Bowl V).
10. The winner of this year's Super Bowl will become the 10th team in the past 14 seasons to win a Super Bowl (only the Patriots and Broncos have won multiple Super Bowls in that span).
11. The winner of this year's Super Bowl will become the 11th franchise to win at least two Super Bowl titles, and ...
12. A Colts loss would make them the 12th franchise to lose at least two Super Bowls (Colts lost Super Bowl III to the Jets).
13. Just a decade ago, the NFC was the dominant conference, having won 13 straight Super Bowls from 1984 until the 1996 season. However, the tables have turned and the NFC has lost 7 of the past 9 Super Bowls.
14. Whoever loses Super Bowl XLI will become the 14th team to lose the Super Bowl in the past 14 seasons
15. There have been 15 300-yard passing games in Super Bowl history. Teams that have had a 300-yard passer are just 8-7 in Super Bowls. Only twice have both QB thrown for 300 yards in the same Super Bowl (Super Bowl XIX: Joe Montana and Dan Marino; Super Bowl XXXVIII: Jake Delhomme and Tom Brady)
16. Manning finally gets to the big game and now, for the 16th straight year, a player from his alma mater, Tennessee, has reached the Super Bowl.
17. There have been 17 100-yard rushing games in Super Bowl history. Teams that have a 100-yard rusher are 15-2 in Super Bowls. (The Colts lost Super Bowl III as Tom Matte had 116 yards for Baltimore, and the Bills lost Super Bowl XXV despite Thurman Thomas' 135 yards). The Colts' and Bills' opponents also had 100-yard rushers in those games.
18. Manning will become the first starting QB in a Super Bowl to wear No. 18. With 31 touchdowns and nine interceptions during the regular season, Manning became just the second QB in NFL history to throw at least 30 TD passes with fewer than 10 INTs in a single season (Donovan McNabb for the 2004 Eagles).
19. Also, Manning's 37,586 career yards in the regular season is the second-highest total by a QB prior to his first Super Bowl start. The only QB with more: John Unitas. The famed No. 19 had thrown for 37,715 yards prior to Super Bowl V. (But Unitas started three NFL Championship Games prior to Super Bowl V).
20. It's a good bet that Grossman or Manning will have a chance to say, "I'm going to Disney World!" A quarterback has been named Super Bowl MVP 20 times.
21. Twenty years ago, Phil Simms put on the best display of passing accuracy in Super Bowl history. In Super Bowl XXI, the Giants QB set a Super Bowl record by completing 88 percent of his passes (22-for-25), earning MVP honors in the Giants' 39-20 win over the Broncos.
22. The "other" QB in this year's game, Grossman, was the 22nd overall selection in the 2003 draft. His 23 career regular-season starts are the eighth-fewest for a QB prior to his first Super Bowl start, and ...
23. Despite what people have said about Grossman, he did throw 23 TD passes this season, becoming just the second Bears QB to throw at least 20 TD passes in a season over the past 40 years (Erik Kramer had 29 in 1995).
24. Tony Dungy or Lovie Smith will become the 24th head coach to win a Super Bowl ... Smith was an assistant coach under Dungy with Tampa Bay from 1996-2000.
25. Twenty-five starting QBs have won a Super Bowl title. First-timers Manning and Grossman are guaranteed to make it 26 when Super Bowl XLI concludes.
26. The team that scores first has won 26 of the previous 40 Super Bowls, but that trend has not held true as of late. The team that has scored first has lost four of the past five Super Bowls.
27. The Colts' defense is ranked 21st this season, but it is not the lowest-ranked defense to reach the Super Bowl. That would be the Buffalo Bills in both 1991 and 1993, whose defense was ranked 27th both seasons. The Bills lost both Super Bowls. The lowest-ranked defensive unit to win the Super Bowl was the 2001 New England Patriots (24th).
28. No team has scored exactly 28 points in a Super Bowl, but teams getting over that plateau are 21-2 in Super Bowl play (only losses: Cowboys in Super Bowl XIII, Panthers in Super Bowl XXXVIII)
29. The Colts' No. 29, Joseph Addai, led the team with 1,081 rushing yards this season and in the process became just the fifth rookie to rush for 1,000 yards and reach the Super Bowl in the same season.
30. A player has had 100 receiving yards in a Super Bowl 30 times. A total of five players have reached 100 yards receiving in the past three Super Bowls, including the MVPs of the past two Super Bowls: Deion Branch of New England in Super Bowl XXXIX and Hines Ward of Pittsburgh in Super Bowl XL.
31. The Bears' Devin Hester set an NFL record with six returns for touchdowns during the regular season. Maybe he can match the exploits of the Packers' Desmond Howard, who in Super Bowl XXXI won MVP honors after having 244 total return yards, including a 99-yard kickoff return for a TD against the Patriots.
32. It is hard to believe it has been nine years since a running back has been named Super Bowl MVP. In Super Bowl XXXII, the Broncos' Terrell Davis ran for 157 yards and three touchdowns in Denver's 31-24 victory over the Packers.
33. Having a good running game is always an important key to winning a Super Bowl. How important? Teams that rush for more yards have won 33 of the 40 Super Bowls played The last team to lose after running for more yards: the Titans in Super Bowl XXXIV (outrushed St. Louis 159-29, but lost 23-16).
34. The team that gains the most total yards has won 34 of the previous 40 Super Bowls
35. Can Brian Urlacher become the next a in rare line of defensive players to win Super Bowl MVP? Eight defensive players have won the Super Bowl MVP award, which includes another great middle linebacker, Ray Lewis, who was named MVP of Super Bowl XXXV as the Ravens defeated the Giants 34-7.
36. It has been 36 years since Colts' last (and only) Super Bowl win. If they win Sunday, it would be the longest gap between Super Bowl wins in NFL history.
37. The Colts' and Bears' offenses took center stage in the final 15 minutes of their respective conference championship games, scoring a combined 38 fourth-quarter points. Keep this in mind: The most combined fourth-quarter points in a Super Bowl: 37 by the Panthers (19) and the Patriots (18) in Super Bowl XXXVIII.
38. Overall, Manning and the Colts' offense took control of the AFC Championship Game against New England, particularly in the second half. The Colts scored 38 points (32 in the 2nd half), the most allowed by New England all season. You expected the Colts' offense to provide the firepower on their way to the Super Bowl, however ...
39. The Bears' offense also stepped up in the NFC Championship Game, scoring 39 points in their win over the Saints. The 39 points were the third-most scored by a team in an NFC Championship Game since the merger in 1970.
40. A total of 2,279 players have played in the previous 40 Super Bowls. Mike Lodish is the only player who has appeared in six Super Bowls (Super Bowls XXV-XXVIII with the Bills and Super Bowls XXXII-XXXIII with the Broncos).
41. There have been 41 Super Bowl MVPs in the previous 40 Super Bowls (Harvey Martin and Randy White were co-MVPs in Super Bowl XII). Who will be No. XLII?