Posted on August 15, 2016, by Travis Pulver
The NFL does a lot of dumb things, but one smart thing that the league does involves the halftime show of the Super Bowl. Rather than just book any old musical act to be a part of a program that will be watched in over 100 million households around the world, they do their best to sign a popular act with universal appeal.
That way they can charge an arm and a leg for advertising space during the halftime show since no one is going to change the channel–if they get the right act, that is.
So when the rumor hit the internet over the weekend that the NFL and Pepsi (who sponsors the Super Bowl halftime show) were trying to get Adele to do the halftime show at Super Bowl LI in Houston it made sense. There are few stars as popular as Adele right now—but is the Hello singer really the type of artist we typically have during the Super Bowl?
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She didn’t seem to think so and turned the offer down:
“First of all, I’m not doing the Super Bowl. I mean, come on, that show is not about music. And I don’t really — I can’t dance or anything like that. They were very kind, they did ask me, but I said no,” Adele told the Staples Center audience, in response to rumors reported by British tabloid The Sun via Billboard.
The NFL has likely been turned down by someone of her stature in the past, but to say the show is not about music? Ouch! Maybe that is why the league decided it needed to set the world straight—as far as they were concerned—with a statement of its own (CNN):
“The NFL and Pepsi are big fans of Adele. We have had conversations with several artists about the Pepsi Super Bowl Halftime Show. However, we have not at this point extended a formal offer to Adele or anyone else. We are focused on putting together a fantastic show for Houston, and we look forward to revealing that in good time.”
It would be easy to accuse the NFL of lying (because Adele would not lie to us), but they probably aren’t. A formal offer probably wasn’t made—because she rejected the informal one.
What we likely have here is an instance where both parties are telling the truth. But it is hard not to wonder why the NFL and Pepsi felt the need to release a statement to refute a comment Adele made during a concert. It doesn’t look good when a major star says what she did, but so what? Does the league think it’s saving face?
Hasn’t someone in the NFL PR office figured out by now that whenever the league denies anything we already assume the opposite is true?
In the end, it doesn’t matter. People will tune in to see the train wreck that is the half-time show or marvel at the awesomeness that is the half-time show regardless of who the NFL schedules as the musical act(s).