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Why Buying a TV for Super Bowl Sunday Is Still a Good Play

Matthew Ong

The big game comes loaded with big spending. The cost of a 2013 Super Bowl commercial averaged a record $3.8 million per 30-second ad spot, as marketing departments clamored to get in front of an anticipated record viewing audience. Super Bowl tickets are selling for top dollar, too, going for around $3,000 a pop.

But what about the Super Bowl costs that will affect your own budget and bottom line? If you're one of the lucky few attending the festivities in New Orleans, enjoy. But the majority of us will be watching the game and the commercials from our the comfort of our couches.

Nerd Wallet took a look at the how the costs of the staples of the tailgate have changed since Super Bowl XLVI in 2012, and there's some good and bad news. As expected, quite a few costs are up, chicken wings and game jerseys included. If you're in the market for a big and bold HDTV, however, you could be in luck.

Here's a rundown of the Super Bowl pricing most likely to impact your gameday budget:

1. Chicken Wings. Once disregarded in favor of the rest of the chicken, wings have moved from a fringe food to a staple. Americans are predicted to consume 1.23 billion wings during this year's Super Bowl weekend, according to data from the National Chicken Council. That's not an all-time high--the 1.23 billion number is down about 1 percent from last year--but that's actually due to lack of supply than lack of demand.

The drought from last summer hit the Midwest particularly hard, where a vast amount of the nation's corn is produced. As a result, corn prices are currently at a record high, driving up the cost of chicken feed and limiting the number of chickens that can be produced.

The drought and increased Super Bowl demand will combine to lift chicken wing wholesale prices about 15 percent or more over last year's price. Supply is likely to be limited, too, so plan ahead and get your chicken wings in the freezer as soon as possible to avoid a race for the last batch at the grocery store on Sunday.

2. Team Jerseys. If you want to look like a pro, expect to pay a bit more this year for a jersey. Nike took over NFL outfitting rights from Reebok last April, and with some sleek new uniforms came a bump up in prices.

Currently, Nike is running three tiers of uniforms: the Game Jersey for $100, the Limited Jersey for $135, and the Elite Jersey for $250. The comparable Reebok styles from the 2011-2012 NFL season ran about $20 less on average. The Nike jerseys do have some interesting new features, including lighter fabrics and flywire technology, but you'll be paying for these innovations.

3. TVs. According to the National Retail Federation, a record 7.5 million households will buy a new television for the big game--up substantially from the 2012 number of 5.1 million household. That's a fairly staggering number for Americans just recently coming off Black Friday and the holiday shopping season.

The good news for shoppers, though, is this year they'll get more bang for their buck than during last year's Super Bowl buying season or any other Super Bowl season prior. The price for the highly popular 32-inch TV has dropped to an all-time low, and the decline in prices isn't just as obvious as older technology becoming more affordable.

First, January is a great time to buy consumer electronics. Stockroom managers have to move unsold Christmas merchandise to make space for the New Year's new batch of goods. The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, too, undercuts the value of all electronics currently on the shelves by debuting new products that make the older models look dated.

The larger undercurrent driving low HDTV prices, though, is the industry concern that the TV market could be oversaturated. Consumers are turning away from second and third household TVs in favor of tablets that allow consumers to watch from any room in the house or on the go.

What's the first step if you're concerned a market is oversaturated? Sell everything you have so you can then reevaluate how much to produce and how to change up your strategies. Such is the current life of a TV manufacturer.

If you, then, are one of the 7.5 million households looking for a hard-hitting display to match the action on the field, try negotiating on price if you shop in-store. Managers may be more willing to yield on price than you might suspect.

Matthew Ong is a retail analyst for NerdWallet, a personal finance website that builds tools to instruct and encourage users to save. Using NerdWallet tools, consumers can calculate airline fees, find online coupon codes and more.

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