"Join the world’s biggest huddle" is the pitch from the NY/NJ Super Bowl Host Committee to the 15,000 to 20,000 volunteers it says are needed to host next February’s big game.

Locals must attend a training session, work at least 2 shifts of three to four hours each between Jan. 25 and Feb. 3, 2014 and agree to a "standard background check."

But being in the huddle doesn’t mean they’ll get close to the game. Volunteers will be stationed at the many transportation and tourist sites in the metropolitan region to greet visitors attending Super Bowl XLVIII Feb. 2 at MetLife Stadium and to assist them in their travels. They won’t be needed inside MetLife Stadium on game day, and no volunteers will receive tickets to the game.

And that’s fine with Ed Jackenthal, a Giants season ticketholder from Ewing Twp. who is one of thousands who have already registered.

"Part of it is pride, representing the franchise and representing the region," Jackenthal, 51, said. "New Yorkers get such a bad reputation, but we can be as warm and courteous as the next person.

"This is a unique opportunity for us to shine, to show the world that we can do this right, regardless of the weather," he said.

Volunteers, a Super Bowl tradition going back decades, are critical to the game’s success, host committee president Alfred F. Kelly, Jr. said.

"(Visitors) need to feel welcome, and comfortable and know there are people who can answer questions for them," Kelly said.

The host committee is working with corporations including Prudential, PSE&G and Hertz and educational institutions on both sides of the Hudson to recruit volunteers, Kelly said. With 10 months until kickoff, they are at 13,000, more than half-way to the goal.

The recruitment goal is twice the number New Orleans needed for the last Super Bowl. Jeff Rossi, director of volunteers for the Greater New Orleans Sports Foundation, said about 8,000 were needed for the week of activities before the game.

But Super Bowl XLVIII’s two-state reach means much more ground to cover, Kelly said.

"We’ll have people at the three main airports and at a number of the private airports, at close to 200 hotels, at the main train stations, Penn Station New York and Newark, Lautenberg Station in Secaucus, Grand Central, Hoboken, the Port Authority," Kelly said. "And we’ll have people on the streets in places like Hoboken, Jersey City and Manhattan."

The potential for a crippling storm is another reason the committee is seeking so many volunteers.