The Super Bowl has evolved into one of the biggest sporting events on this planet, a game that generates unprecedented media hype and commercial exposure around the world. This year, the matchup of the league's two best teams takes on even greater meaning. It is the 50th edition -- the golden anniversary -- of the venerable game.
With in mind, the NFL's marketing machine turned it up a notch in 2015 to celebrate the historic nature of the sport's most important contest. If you've watched any football this season, you've probably noticed a ubiquitous theme in nearly every game broadcast: gold, everywhere.
The league decided to signify this year's "golden" Super Bowl by using the commemorative color throughout the year in nearly all of its branding efforts, serving as a timely and frequent reminder to fans of this special season.
First and foremost, the NFL's iconic shield logo took on a gold color and every stadium had a gold-painted 50-yard line. Well, that is every stadium except the one across the Bay from the home of this year's Super Bowl. The Oakland Raiders, who play at O.co Coliseum, refused to take part in the celebration for the first two weeks of the season. Eventually, after owner Mark Davis claimed they were waiting for the Oakland A's to wrap up their campaign, the team complied with the new coloring scheme.
The added golden hue extended to the logos for all official league events, including the draft, Pro Bowl and of course, the biggest game of them all.
The glitziest change was to the trophy that either the Denver Broncos or Carolina Panthers will get when they're crowned champions on Feb. 7. Attached to the traditional silver Lombardi Trophy is a golden "50" -- the numerals bronzed and plated in 18-karat gold. The Super Bowl is already arguably the biggest spectacle in all of sports, and the unique sculpture solidifies it as one of the most prestigious trophies as well.
Winning a championship ring is undoubtedly a memorable achievement for all involved, and one that will certainly take on added significance this year as the NFL celebrates its "golden" Super Bowl.