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Preview: Brian Williams at Puppy Bowl IX

Brian Williams went behind the scenes at Animal Planet's Puppy Bowl IX, where he met executive producer Melinda Toporoff and one of the contenders, Pearl. See more of Brian at the Puppy Bowl this Thursday on NBC Nightly News.

By Jamie Farnsworth, NBC News

Everyone’s gearing up for the big game this Sunday, where players go head to head in an epic battle. No, not the Super Bowl. This highly anticipated game is Animal Planet’s Puppy Bowl IX. Brian Williams went behind the scenes at the taping of the Puppy Bowl, where he experienced all the cuteness first hand. On a mini-stadium, the puppies romp while a referee stands by to call out penalties like “ruffing the passer” and “illegal retriever downfield.”  

All of the 63 puppies are brought in from shelters and rescues around the country and end up being adopted.