‘Fresh Air’ talks football, seriously

     Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) calls an audible at the line of scrimmage against the San Diego Chargers in the fourth quarter of an NFL AFC division playoff football game, Sunday, Jan. 12, 2014, in Denver. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey)

    Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) calls an audible at the line of scrimmage against the San Diego Chargers in the fourth quarter of an NFL AFC division playoff football game, Sunday, Jan. 12, 2014, in Denver. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey)

    You tune in to “Fresh Air” for mind-expanding journeys into film, theater, television, literature, jazz, popular music, politics, science, and world events.

    But for Thursday’s show, bring some nachos, because we’re talking about football and the Super Bowl.

    And I don’t mean insightful analysis of the game’s cultural impact, or exalted takes on the half-time shows. We talk about the intricate strategy and violence of the game as you see it and players experience it.

    We talk about what a quarterback does — from all that incomprehensible gibberish he yells at the line of scrimmage, to how he scans the field at warp speed for receivers — and whether he feels fear when doing this while trying to dodge the 300-pound guys trying to deck him.

    And we go over some interesting moments from the big game over the years, inculding some from when it wasn’t such a big game.

    In Thursday’s show, we introduce the “Fresh Air” audience to a Philadelphia (and national) treasure, football writer Ray Didinger. He’s spent most of his career covering the game and has been named a Hall of Fame writer in Canton.

    Listen here and you’ll hear why — he makes the game comprehensible and interesting to everybody, and he’s got a lot of stories.

    And for a first-hand take on what it’s like to play in the big game, we spend a few minutes with former pro quarterback and current ESPN analyst Ron Jaworski. You can hear that one here.

    You can always hear “Fresh Air” at 3 and 7 on 91FM. If you’re listening outside the Philadelphia area, find a station here.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.