Super Bowl LI (or Valentine’s Day) gifts from Skinit and New Era

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If you are a Bears, 49ers or Browns fan, the days leading up to Super Bowl LI provide an advantageous time to shift your NFL loyalties to a team that actually wins. The secret to pulling off the transition and creating your new life? NFL gear.

You can seamlessly transition your fandom from known loser to instant winner. And whenever your friends bring up your former muse, you can doff your new Patriots or Falcons hat from New Era and act like you don’t hear them, or you can pick up your phone covered with your new favorite NFL team’s logo via Skinit and pretend to be taking a very important call. Convert the years of disappointment created by your past team’s failures to fuel your nearly fanatical patronage and support of the league’s current best team.

If you have an extremely cool girlfriend or spouse, think of these not just as Super Bowl gifts but a Valentine’s Day gift suggestion as well. And since your special lady or man will owe you a gift for V-Day (not to be confused with “VD,” entirely different) share this column and gently nudge them towards a gift you will actually appreciate and use.

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Super Bowl LI: From Pizza Hut to the NFL, DeAngelo Williams always delivers

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This Sunday during the Super Bowl, Pizza Hut will produce over two million pizzas that will be consumed by football fans as they watch the game. Among the fans will be Pittsburgh Steelers running back DeAngelo Williams.

In 2000, the then 16-year-old Williams worked at Pizza Hut as a cashier, cook and delivery driver. “I grew up in the small town of Wynne, Arkansas, which had about 8,000 people,” Williams said. “You knew the people who were good tippers and definitely got those people their pizzas first.”

For Pizza Hut, the largest pizza restaurant in the world, the day of the Big Game is also the largest delivery day of the year. To prepare, Pizza Hut hired an additional 11,000 employees.

Last week in Pittsburgh, I hung out with Williams and watched him put delivery drivers through various drills at the Pizza Hut Delivery Combine. “Coach Williams'” whistle never seemed to get a rest.

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Top EPL clubs fighting for title could be separated by Xmas fixtures

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This season’s fight for the Premier League title is going to be one of the closest fought in the history of the EPL. At the moment, only four points separate the top five teams, and the first place position has changed many times. At the moment, it is Chelsea who leads the pack after going on a six-game winning streak without conceding a single goal. What makes it even more impressive is that they managed to turn things around so quickly after suffering a humiliating defeat to Arsenal 3-0. Since then, they have been playing like the team that won the title in 2014/15. The run they’re currently on has made them the favorites to be crowned champions with many of the best sport betting sites such as Totesport.

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Chase Elliott talks about his rookie season and the 2017 Kelley Blue Book Best Buy Awards

4-6 November, 2016, Fort Worth, Texas USA Chase Elliott (24) makes a pit stop. ©2016, John Harrelson / NKP

Kelley Blue Book recently announced the winners of the 2017 Kelley Blue Book Best Buy Awards, honoring the top model-year vehicle choices available in the U.S. market. Of more than 300 new-car models available for 2017, KBB’s editors named the 2017 Honda Civic the Best Buy of 2017 alongside Best Buy Award winners in 12 major vehicle categories.

We spoke to NASCAR driver Chase Elliott about the KBB awards, his rookie season, and if his dad, legendary driver Bill Elliott aka “Awesome Bill From Dawsonville,” ever made him use KBB to help with an automobile purchasing decision like our dads did.

When was the last time you bought a car? When I was your age, my dad made me use Kelley Blue Book to confirm the right price. Did your dad ever make you do that?

Yes! I have in the past. I haven’t purchased anything recently because I’ve been so focused on my rookie season. But I have definitely looked at KBB over the years, trying to make a good move in terms of a purhcasing decision, and my dad got me started on that.

What’s the weirdest thing you’ve thought of while driving 200 MPH on a racetrack? 

That’s a good question. Once we get going in a race, we have so many things that are going on. Trying to make the car better, trying to improve, trying to drive better, communicating what you need to your team. We just have a lot of things going on. That being said, you don’t have a lot of time to think about anything outside of that. And if you do, your head probably isn’t in the right place. We try to stay as locked in as we can.

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Missing Reels: “Bigger Stronger Faster*” (2008)

Missing Reels examines overlooked, unappreciated or unfairly maligned movies. Sometimes these films haven’t been seen by anyone, and sometimes they’ve been seen by everyone… who loathed them. Sometimes they’ve simply been forgotten. But in any case, Missing Reels argues that they deserve to be seen and admired by more people.

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It will come as a shock to no one that I’m not much of an athlete or sports nut. Sidelined by asthma and an almost comical lack of coordination, I’ve always been an indoor kid who preferred his comic books and movies to getting out in the field and playing a game. And yet, even with that propensity for introversion and solitary activities, there’s one sport that I do follow: football. The season has just begun and already injuries are piling up, with the shadow of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) looming over the proceedings. Much like football is a battle of strategy and toughness, so too is the dichotomy for passionately loving the sport with the all too real thought that we’re watching men destroy their bodies and lives for our pleasure.

We ask a lot of our athletes, putting their health at risk on the field while maintaining some semblance of “role model” actions off it. But why? And for what? In the end, it’s a moral struggle about expectations, bloodthirsty crowds and entertainment that leaves us all with some serious questions. These questions don’t just extend to the (very real) possibility of CTE but also of performance enhancing drugs (PEDs). If we want our professional sports players to be at their best, then why do we chastise them for taking something that helps them reach that goal we (unfairly) demand?

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