The NFL broke its tradition of using Roman numerals for the Super Bowl and branded its 2016 championship game as "Super Bowl 50" instead.
It was a decision that the league originally announced in June 2014, when the logos for the game in Santa Clara, Calif., were revealed. In the press release, the NFL explained the change as a way to "further elevate and celebrate the historic 50th Super Bowl."
Unsurprisingly, NFL players really don't care. Via Ahiza Garcia of CNN:
"We haven't heard feedback from players about the logo," NFL spokesperson Brian McCarthy told CNNMoney. "They are laser focused on getting to the game that features the Super Bowl 50 logo. They are not concerned with whether the logo features elements of the Arabic or Roman numeral systems or was simply a happy face emoji."
While celebrating the Super Bowl's "golden anniversary" certainly makes sense as motivation to call the game Super Bowl 50 complete with golden numbers, logos and lettering, the fact that the Roman number for 50 is L is also likely a contributing factor. Frankly, "Super Bowl L" isn't the most attractive title to market or create a logo for.
The use of Roman numbers didn't become an NFL tradition until Super Bowl V in 1971. The first two Super Bowls were officially titled as the AFL-NFL World Championship Game, although Kansas City Chiefs owner Lamar Hunt was already calling the game the Super Bowl in meetings in 1966, before the first game was played in 1967.
The NFL has already said that the tradition of using Roman numerals will be reinstated in 2017 with Super Bowl LI at NRG Stadium in Houston.