The NFL and Nickelodeon missed a golden opportunity for a double promotion during the 2022 playoffs.

The game that will be broadcasted on both CBS and Nickelodeon this year will be the Cowboys-49ers. That game is scheduled to kickoff on Sunday at 4:30pm EST. 

Had the league picked the Bengals for the Nickelodeon simulcast, there’s a chance the team’s quarterback would have been repping one of the channel’s most recognizable characters.

For years, Joe Burrow has donned merchandise of the hit show “SpongeBob Squarepants,” ranging from cleats and shirts, even to a sports coat at one point.

Why does the second-year Cincinnati QB have such an affinity for the cartoon sponge? Sporting News takes a look.

Why Joe Burrow is a fan of SpongeBob

Burrow has never shied away from putting his love of SpongeBob on display.

When he was invited to the Heisman Trophy ceremony, where he would take away the hardware, he wore some socks with the character’s face on them, explaining that they are his “go-to.”

When the Tigers began celebrating their national championship victory against Clemson, Burrow had SpongeBob-themed Vans that he wore amid the bead-filled event.

So why is he such a fan of the character? Burrow explained during his rookie season that growing up, it was among the only shows he would watch.

“I was scared of everything growing up,” Burrow said. “I still don’t like scary movies, I don’t like haunted houses or anything like that. I couldn’t watch ‘Harry Potter,’ ‘Lord of the Rings,’ ‘House.’ I was strictly a SpongeBob, Disney Channel, Nickelodeon kinda guy.”

Since arriving in the NFL, Burrow has seemingly embraced his love of SpongeBob even more than when he was at LSU. During his rookie season before the Bengals played the Titans in Week 8, Burrow had a custom SpongeBob coat made for his entrance. The coat had a pattern inside featuring SpongeBob flipping Krabby Patties and a pocket square with his face on it.

The Cincinnati Enquirer reported that he wore several other SpongeBob-themed pocket squares during his rookie season, and then, during the offseason, he wore a beanie with Squidward on it while advertising Bose wireless ear buds.

Following a win against the Ravens in Week 16 where he threw for a franchise-record 525 yards (also the fourth-most in a single game in NFL history), Burrow celebrated the holidays by wearing a Krusty Krab Christmas sweater.

And when he was named the Nickelodeon Valuable Player for the game, he received the trophy from his favorite character and got slimed by tight end C.J. Uzomah. The following week, he passed it forward to wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase.