Welcome to the craziest week in sports journalism known as Super Bowl media week otherwise known as letting the patients run the asylum. It is a gathering of journalists from around the world to ask the most inane questions (many of them not even about football) that get the weirdest of responses that usually… usually, don’t make any sense. Wait, I am mistaken, you have seen this before, just think of it as another President Trump rally. (Side note: I don’t think I’ll ever get used to saying or writing “president” in front of his name) But I digress, it is a situation where players and coaches are asked a few thousand questions which range from the appropriate to the somewhat idiotic to the absolute full end of the spectrum of idiocy. In other words, nothing intelligent or remotely worthwhile tends to take place. Ok, I may be exaggerating there, but you really aren’t going to get any useful game day information. It is a spectacle onto itself that is getting almost as big as the game itself, but certainly not as big as all the betting that goes on.
Some of the “normal” questions that are asked can be based on eating habits, whether or not the coach allows for conjugal visits the night before the game and there have even been several marriage proposals. As I mentioned, the questions are way out there. Not to be outdone however, are some of the answers. Like this recent (often repeated) most famous response from retired Seattle Seahawks Marshawn Lynch. In case you were not aware, that was his response to every single question posed to him that day. Every. Single. One.
So far though, the most interesting topic to come out of the Opening Night Media was how unflappable Tom Brady was in answering questions. Maybe that isn’t as surprising as he has always been that way. Moving away from any tactical questions, he was asked about his “friend” President Donald Trump. Brady was his usual cool self-replying, “You know, like I said, I’m just a positive person. I want the best for everybody.” I don’t begrudge Tom Brady for not engaging on this topic as no one should have to voice their opinion if they don’t want too. There is nothing wrong with his approach or his answer.
Other athletes and coaches have decided to speak and that is their right as well. Gregg Popovich, Steve Kerr (whose father was killed by a terrorist), LeBron James and even Toronto sports figures (and US citizens) such as Dwayne Casey, Kyle Lowry and Michael Bradley responded to the Trump travel ban as they saw fit.
But as much as media week is a side show, it does not take away from the game itself. Despite having two disappointing Conference Finals last week (each game was a blow out and pretty much decided early) the Super Bowl does have a high amount of intrigue. The Atlanta Falcons have put through a fairly incredible playoff performance with their balanced attack and a defense that is playing above their numbers. The New England Patriots on the other hand are… well, they are the New England Patriots. Under Coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady, this will be their 7th Super Bowl appearance and trying to get a record 5th championship. They have been here and done that often enough that they should not be phased by anything this week. That is why they opened as 3 point favourites and currently where it stands.
I don’t have a prediction as to who will win and I don’t really have a team that I like better. I do however, appreciate being able to witness history and therefore cheering for the Pats and Tom Brady to win their 5th Super Bowl. Plus, wouldn’t it be really cool to watch that awkward moment when Commissioner Roger Goodell has to shake Tom Brady’s hand and give him the trophy after butting heads with him for the past two years for that ridiculous deflate gate incident. Now that’s a spectacle I wouldn’t mind seeing!
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