Super Bowl LVI

Bay Area Bengals: Local Connections to Super Bowl LVI

Catch the Cincinnati Bengals take on the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LVI right here on NBC Bay Area

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While the Bay Area's football team won't be in Southern California for Super Bowl LVI, there will be plenty of people with Bay Area ties battling for the Lombardi Trophy.

Football's biggest game of the year – this time featuring the Cincinnati Bengals and Los Angeles Rams – will feature four people with connections to the Bay Area, and they'll all be representing the team in white, black and orange.

Get to know them below.

Joe Mixon – Running Back, Cincinnati Bengals

Joe Mixon #28 of the Cincinnati Bengals.
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Joe Mixon #28 of the Cincinnati Bengals runs with the football during the second quarter during the AFC Championship Game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium on January 30, 2022 in Kansas City, Missouri, United States.

When Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow hands the ball off, it'll likely be to No. 28. That's Joe Mixon. He grew up in the East Bay and attended Freedom High School in Oakley.

Brian Callahan – Offensive Coordinator, Cincinnati Bengals

Joe Burrow of the Cincinnati Bengals and offensive coordinator Brian Callahan.
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Joe Burrow #9 of the Cincinnati Bengals and offensive coordinator Brian Callahan look on during training camp on July 29, 2021 in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Leading the Cincinnati offense from the sidelines is offensive coordinator Brian Callahan, who also has East Bay ties. Callahan went to De La Salle High School in Concord and played backup quarterback for the legendary program.

"He came out every day at practice, worked just as hard, ran scout team," said Bob Ladouceur, Callahan's coach at De La Salle. "When he got into games, he moved the football. He was just a hair behind [starting quarterback] Matt [Gutierrez], so he didn't get that starting designation. It really didn't bother him. I mean, he was a team player all the way."

If the Callahan name sounds familiar, that's because it is. Callahan's father, Bill Callahan, coached the then-Oakland Raiders in the early 2000s.

"My dad's been my biggest mentor and my most ardent supporter if you will," Brian said. "He's been a huge person for me to lean on outside of just being my father. His advice and mentorship and all those things has been outstanding. I love talking to him about football, about life and about how this profession works."

Chidobe Awuzie – Cornerback, Cincinnati Bengals

Cincinnati Bengals cornerback Chidobe Awuzie.
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Cincinnati Bengals cornerback Chidobe Awuzie (22) reacts before the game against the Green Bay Packers and the Cincinnati Bengals on October 10, 2021, at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati, OH.

On the other side of the ball for the Bengals is Chidobe Awuzie. The Cincinnati cornerback was born in San Jose and attended Oak Grove High School.

Michael Thomas – Safety, Cincinnati Bengals

Michael Thomas #31of the Cincinnati Bengals.
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Michael Thomas #31 of the Cincinnati Bengals celebrates against the Las Vegas Raiders during the AFC Wild Card Playoff game at Paul Brown Stadium on January 15, 2022 in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Joining Awuzie in Cincinnati's defensive backfield is safety Michael Thomas. He played his college ball at Stanford University.

NBC Bay Area's Raj Mathai and Anthony Flores catch you up to speed on what to know ahead of the big game on Sunday.
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