PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — Hampton Roads will have several players representing when the Kansas City Chiefs take on the Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl LVII on Sunday, February 12 in Los Angeles.

The game starts at 6:30 p.m. on FOX, and Rihanna will headline the halftime show. And don’t forget before the game two puppies from Virginia Beach will take part in the annual Puppy Bowl on Animal Planet.

But without further ado, here’s the breakdown for players to watch with ties to our region:

Kansas City Chiefs

Derrick Nnadi, defensive tackle (No. 91)

  • High school: Ocean Lakes (Virginia Beach)
  • College: Florida State

The 6-foot-1, 317 pound defensive lineman from Virginia Beach is in his fifth season in the league (all with Kansas City) and has started in all of the Chiefs’ games so far this season. He’s recorded 11 solo and 25 combined tackles this season, and has been named one of the NFL’s most underappreciated players in recent years for his strong rush defense. He’s also known for giving back to the community, notably paying for adoptions fees for shelter dogs after his 2020 Super Bowl win.

Philadelphia Eagles

Josh Sweat, defensive end (No. 94)

  • High school: Oscar Smith (Chesapeake)
  • College: Florida State

The 6-foot-5, 265-pounder and 2021 Pro Bowler returned for the playoffs after suffering a “life-threatening” neck injury in the Eagles’ second to last regular season game on January 1 against the Saints. “Sweaty-J” is a key piece in Philly’s top ranked defense, with 12.5 sacks so far through the 2023-23 season. He had 6 tackles and one and a half sacks during playoff games against New York and San Francisco. This is his first Super Bowl appearance (the Eagles won the Super Bowl in February 2018 and he joined later that year).

Zach Pascal, wide receiver (No. 3)

  • College: Old Dominion

Pascal is the all-time leading receiver in ODU’s history and helped lead the Monarchs to their first bowl win (2016 Bahamas Bowl vs. Eastern Michigan). The 6-foot-2 28-year-old from Upper Marlboro, Maryland, spent his first four years in the league with the Colts after going undrafted. The Eagles picked him in free agency and he’s played in every game this year so far, catching 16 passes for 154 yards and a touchdown. This is his first Super Bowl appearance.

Rick Lovato, long snapper (No. 45)

  • College: Old Dominion

The Eagles’ starting long snapper, who played at ODU from 2011 to 2014, worked at his family’s sub shop after going undrafted. He eventually made his way to the Eagles and became the first ODU football player to start in a Super Bowl. Lovato was perfect on all of his field/extra points snaps in that game as the Eagles defeated the Patriots 41-33 in Super Bowl LII in 2018. This is the 30-year-old’s sixth season in the league and second Super Bowl appearance.

Notable other Virginia connections, local players on practice squad:

Chiefs practice squad linebacker Cole Christiansen played at Nansemond-Suffolk Academy.

Chiefs safety Juan Thornhill (No. 22) played at UVA and was a second-round pick back in 2019. He’s a starter and wears No. 22.

Eagles practice squad safety Anthony Harris played at UVA. This is his eighth year in the NFL.

Eagles reserve tight end Dalton Keene played at Virginia Tech and was just signed to a reserve/future contract on Jan. 23.

Puppy Bowl

More into the Puppy Bowl than the Super Bowl? Don’t forget there are two puppies from Virginia Beach competing in the Animal Planet classic on February 12. Espresso and Briscoe were both from the Virginia Beach SPCA.