Tag:Super Bowl XLVI
Posted on: February 3, 2012 12:28 pm
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Coughlin not concerned Giants are too cocky

                                     (Ryan Wilson, CBSSports.com)
By Ryan Wilson

INDIANAPOLIS -- The seven days leading up to the Super Bowl feels more like seven months when you're looking for stories that haven't been beaten into the ground by Wednesday. It must be even more interminable for the coaches and players who have to endure it.

Before the Patriots left New England, Tom Brady told fans gathered at a pep rally that “We’re going down there, and we’re going down there for one reason. We’re going to give it our best and "hopefully" we have a lot more people at our party next weekend.”

The New York media ran with Brady's words -- ESPNNewYork.com's headline: “Brady planning victory party," The New York Post: “Tom’s taunt,” and the New York Daily News went with: “Tom’s talkin’ trash.”

Brady, of course, was asked about it once he arrived in Indy.

“Well, it was a pep rally,” he said smiling. “People were pretty excited. Certainly players were excited. I know 25,000 fans who were there were excited as well. It was great to see the support. We get great support, home and away, and hopefully we have some Patriots jerseys in the stands next Sunday night.”

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Giants defensive end Justin Tuck echoed Brady's sentiments when asked about it at Tuesday's Media Day: "Man, it was a pep rally," he said. "What was he supposed to say? I don’t think it’s Tom doing anything but getting fans riled up."

On Friday, it was Giants head coach Tom Coughlin's turn. He was asked whether he worries about his team being too cocky.

“I’m not sure what you’re referencing," he said. "I know that there are one or two quotes out there, but, to be honest with you, I don’t know that either one of them is any different than Tom Brady’s quotes. I think it’s just a matter of our team has played good football against a great football team. We always focus our team on confidence enough to get there and confident enough to get back. That’s the way we look at it.”

Mercifully, there's just one more day until the Super Bowl is here.


Super Bowl XLVI Preview
Will the Patriots get revenge this time around or will the Giants continue their run to another Super Bowl title? Pat Kirwan joins Scott Braun for the preview.

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Posted on: February 3, 2012 11:50 am
 

Like Coughlin, Belichick has no plans to retire

Follow all of CBSSports.com's Full Super Bowl Coverage (Ryan Wilson, CBSSports.com)

By Ryan Wilson

INDIANAPOLIS -- Earlier this week, CBS analyst and former Giants quarterback Phil Simms said that he tells players that when they think their career is over to "play two more years. ... Because the rest of your life is a long time."

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No idea if that tenet holds for head coaches, too. On Friday, in his last meeting of the week with the media, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick was asked if there was a chance he'd retire should New England win Sunday. It would be Belichick's fourth championship since 2001 and further solidify his Hall of Fame credentials on a career in coaching that began with the Baltimore Colts in 1975.

“Right now, I’m really thinking, ‘What’s the best thing I can do to help our football team on Sunday against the Giants?’ I want to really try to do a good job in the job that I have," he said. "I enjoy all the aspects of the job. I enjoy the team-building, the drafting, the free agents, team acquisitions, those kind of things.

"I enjoy bringing in the young players and working with guys who haven’t been in the NFL and teaching them the basic fundamentals in how to become a professional football player for the New England Patriots. I enjoy working with the veteran players, the Tom Bradys and the Vince Wilforks and the Wes Welkers and all those kind of players that can do really special things because of their not only talent, but experience."

He continued: "I enjoy the competition on a weekly basis. Not just on Sundays, but the preparation leading up into the game. I enjoy all of it. It beats working. It’s fun to address those challenges on a daily basis, so right now I’m really focused on the game and that’s where my energy is going to go, toward doing the best I can for the New England Patriots against the Giants on Sunday.”

If Belichick's words aren't convincing enough, his newfound effusiveness appears to be. So for now, the 59-year-old ain't going anywhere, sharing the sentiments of his counterpart Sunday, Tom Coughlin.

CBSSports.com's Pete Prisco asked Coughlin after the Giants beat the 49ers in the NFC Championship game if, at 65, he had any thoughts on calling it quits.

Retire to do what?” Coughlin said. "I feel good … I still love what I do."


Super Bowl XLVI Preview
Will the Patriots get revenge this time around or will the Giants continue their run to another Super Bowl title? Pat Kirwan joins Scott Braun for the preview.

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Posted on: February 3, 2012 9:06 am
Edited on: February 5, 2012 10:06 am
 

Belichick: Gronk hasn't experienced setbacks

Gronk got a question or two about his ankle Thursday. (Will Brinson, CBSSports.com)

By Josh Katzowitz

INDIANAPOLIS -- Another day, another couple of questions about the status of Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski. After Gronkowski was limited in Thursday’s practice -- the big news, of course, being that Gronkowski and his high ankle sprain actually did practice --coach Bill Belichick said Friday morning that he didn’t have setbacks and that he “was OK this morning.”

Considering Gronkowski participated in drills for the first time since his ankle injury in the AFC championship game and came away feeling fine is obviously good news for New England. The fact he didn’t have any negative effects this morning is even better news. The next step: practicing again today and, again, not experiencing any setbacks.

“Rob has worked extremely hard,” Belichick said. “He’s been in treatment morning, noon and night. Hopefully he continue to progress. He’s coming along, and he’s moving in the right direction.”

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Asked to elaborate on what exactly Gronkowski did at practice, Belichick said, “He was limited. He did some of the things that we did in practice, but not all of them.”

Then, a deadpan: “Is that what you were looking for?”

Gronkowski was slightly more verbose after Thursday’s practice.

"It's definitely huge, significant," Gronkowski said. "Obviously I want to get out there, I want to get some practice in before the Super Bowl. I want to do as much as possible, whatever I can do before the game. We'll see how I am feeling, talk to the training staff, talk to the coaches, put it all together."

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Posted on: February 3, 2012 3:20 am
 

Irsay: 'Peyton has not passed our physical'

It's getting ugly between Manning and Irsay... (Getty Images)
By Will Brinson

INDIANAPOLIS -- The Peyton Manning saga is in full public relations mode. And despite a promise from Manning and Colts owner Jim Irsay that things reached a peace accord, everything managed to turn sour again late on Thursday night, courtesy of Jim Irsay's Twitter account and a report that Manning was "cleared" to return to playing football.

That report surfaced Thursday afternoon and then Irsay tweeted late on Thursday that indicated Peyton was, in fact, not clear, physically speaking.

"Peyton has not passed our physical nor has he been cleared to play for The Indianapolis Colts," Irsay tweeted. "Team statement coming on Friday."

This is about to get ugly, and it's about to get ugly quickly. There was some reconciliation of feelings between Irsay and Manning before the media arrived in Indianapolis earlier in the week. That almost put the Colts long-term situation at quarterback on the backburner when it comes to Indianapolis Star front pages. It hasn't.

Instead, things have somehow managed to become more awkward. Manning -- vis a vis a report -- was declared eligible to start playing football. This said nothing about the arm strength of Manning, who's recovering from nerve damage.

Irsay's tweet, on the other hand, speaks directly to Manning's lack of health, as it pertains to the Colts decision to pick up his $28 million option.

Peyton might well be healthy, but it matters little at this point, because the salvos are fired. Manning says he's healthy enough to play football. (Ergo, he believes he should be paid to be played football, right?)

And Irsay -- and the Colts -- disagree, and, ergo, Manning shouldn't be paid to play football. At least for the Colts. It's a nightmare of epic proportions for everyone involved and, despite the quite pleasant Super Bowl taking place in Indianapolis, this story is casting a cloud over the normally fun activities taking place in Indiana.

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Posted on: February 2, 2012 11:44 pm
 

Fewell has led Giants past early-season woes

Perry Fewell has led New York's defense past a number of early-season injuries (US Presswire).

By Josh Katzowitz

INDIANAPOLIS -- Surrounded by the media this week, Perry Fewell could reflect on August and September and talk about the adversity the Giants defense faced, when New York couldn’t keep its players healthy, and about the adjustments the team needed to make at the time.

Since the Giants will face the Patriots in Super Bowl XLVI in two days, Fewell doesn’t necessarily have bad memories from those uncertain days. At the time, though, it must have been maddening for the Giants defensive coordinator.

“It was a bad thing for us defensively,” Fewell said. “What it allowed us to do, though, was put young players on the field who normally wouldn’t play. A Jacquian Williams played a significant amount of time. A Greg Jones went on the field and played a significant amount of time. Spencer Paysinger, he played. It gave guys some experience that normally wouldn’t have gotten that experience. We won some games and we lost some games. But we found out who we were at the end.”Thomas

In training camp, though, the Giants had to wonder if the defense would have enough players to field a team. Among the early-season (or training camp) injuries: Justin Tuck, Osi Umenyiora, Terrell Thomas, Prince Amukamara, Marvin Austin, Jonathan Goff, and Clint Sintim. The avalanche of injuries wouldn’t end.

“It was all of us trying to figure out a way to make that work throughout the season,” Fewell said. “That was an ongoing process. The thing about it was that each week, somebody else went down. We were never able to develop consistency during that stretch.

“When we played some of the young guys, we found out what they could do and what they couldn’t do. I said, ‘OK, let’s put the pieces back and see if we can make these pieces work the way I think they can work.’ And it happened.”

Though Fewell hasn’t gotten much play this year as a future head coach -- in an offseason when most teams hired first-timers to run their squads -- his performance this season in New York should raise his profile even more. He interviewed for a few head coaching jobs last year, but he didn’t draw much, if any interest, following the 2011 regular season.

Could be because the Giants ranked 27th in yards allowed this season. Could be the three-week stretch where the team allowed 49, 38 and 34 points in losses to the Saints, Packers and Cowboys, respectively. After that Saints game, though, is when Fewell began to change the attitude of his unit by angrily berating his underperforming players.

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“He’s not a screamer,” linebacker Mathias Kiwanuka said. “He’s not a cusser. But he was animated and he said some things that were heartfelt. They were true, and it needed to be said. We didn’t have a good performance that week, and we needed to be called out. He holds himself accountable, and he holds all of us accountable.”

After the 2010 season, Fewell received good marks during his head coaching interviews with the Browns, Broncos, 49ers and Panthers -- though he did pull an 0-fer in actually landing the jobs -- but teams who needed new leadership seemed to forget him about this year.

Fewell thinks about that sometimes. He wonders if he’ll ever get his shot.

“It’s always beena goal of mine,” said Fewell, who went 3-4 as the Bills interim coach in 2009. “To win the Super Bowl is No. 1. Then, if that opportunity presents itself in the future, I would love to become a head football coach. But I saw the good and the not so good about it. To be a football coach is to get in and work with the players and see exactly what you can do with them and get them to reach their potential. Sometimes as a head football coach, you’re not able to do that. You’re an administrator, you’re a facilitator. You don’t always get to grind with them and have the fun things in the meeting room that’s really rewarding in this profession. Hey, I’m happy I’m doing what I do.”

But there’s also the chance that Fewell could benefit from his extra exposure this week. Maybe accomplishing his ultimate goal will lead him to another of his most important ambitions.

“I think it gives me more marketability,” Fewell said. “Now I have the experience of coaching in the Super Bowl, knowing what the preparation is like for Super Bowl week. That adds value to what I can do.”

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Posted on: February 2, 2012 8:02 pm
 

JPP: Brady reacted to pressure that didn't exist

                                     (Ryan Wilson, CBSSports.com)
By Ryan Wilson

INDIANAPOLIS -- The last time the Patriots and Giants met in the Super Bowl, quarterback Tom Brady was sacked five times. On Wednesday, Brady was asked about the implication that he can be rattled in the pocket.

"It wouldn't be the Super Bowl if they (the Giants defense) weren't trying to knock me down or knock me out … but our offensive line gets paid too," he said. "We're going to try to eliminate (bad throws) … we had too many of those last time (against the Ravens). We're not going to be able to win the game playing like that."

The Pats and Giants met earlier this season too, and while Brady was sacked just twice, it was the perceived pressure that forced him into mistakes -- at least to hear Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul.

“I think it will have much impact on his performance because if you look at Week 9, when we played them, it’s like he felt us," Pierre-Paul said during Thursday's media availability. "When we looked back on the film, we watched the film, and we didn’t really rush like we can rush as a defense. He was throwing balls on the ground and stuff, but like I said, it’s going to be a battle. We have to get there. We have to. …

"(Brady) did react to pressure that didn’t exist, and he was just throwing the ball places where there wasn’t even a receiver there. Imagine us getting there even faster and actually doing our jobs and getting hits on him.”

Brady has a short history of underwhelming performances against the Giants (he's also played poorly in the games just prior to facing the Giants, too), but he's also one of the most successful quarterbacks in NFL history and a three-time Super Bowl winner.

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Following the Patriots' conference championship win over the Ravens two weeks ago, Brady said he "sucked" and promised owner Bob Kraft that he would "play a lot better" in the Super Bowl. Good news for New York, however: turns out, Brady's human. Pierre-Paul was asked if the Patriots quarterback was was a god.

"He's not," he responded.

Which was made clear from watching him play against the Giants.

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Posted on: February 2, 2012 7:30 pm
Edited on: February 2, 2012 7:31 pm
 

EoF on the scene: Super Bowl XLVI, Radio Row

Follow all of CBSSports.com's Full Super Bowl Coverage (Photo credit: Ryan Wilson, CBSSports.com)

By Ryan Wilson

INDIANAPOLIS -- Radio Row has gone from a ghost town to hopping in 24 hours. Almost all of this had to do with Tim Tebow (who we somehow missed) and Madonna (who we didn't). Enjoy.



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Posted on: February 2, 2012 6:42 pm
Edited on: February 2, 2012 7:45 pm
 

Gronkowski returns to Patriots practice Thursday

Gronk should get plenty of questions on Friday as well. (AP)
By Will Brinson

INDIANAPOLIS -- Rob Gronkowski returned to practice on a limited basis for the Patriots Thursday afternoon after an entire week of speculation about whether or not he would be able to play on Sunday.

But Patriots coach Bill Belichick didn't officially put to rest any of the concern about Gronk possibly missing the game when he delayed any further decision on Friday.

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"He did some things. He didn’t do everything," Belichick said following practice. "We’ll see how he is tomorrow. I think that will be the big key – how he responds to this today."

Gronk's status early on Friday at the media session will be telling; if he's moving around well and able to walk without any serious limitations, it'll be an excellent sign for New England. (We noted earlier on Thursday that Gronk was "strutting" prior to the media session and fake limping afterwards.)

“It was good. It was fine," Belichick said when asked how Gronk performed. "We’ll see where he is tomorrow -- whether that set him back, whether it didn’t and whether he’s able to continue to progress on a daily basis. But it was a good test for him, too, at least.

"At least he was out here and did some things to see how it feels. We’ll see how it goes."

Gronkowski, per our Patriots Rapid Reporter Paul Dehner Jr., called getting back to practice "huge" and "significant."

"It's definitely huge, significant," Gronkowski said. "Obviously I want to get out there, I want to get some practice in before the Super Bowl. I want to do as much as possible, whatever I can do before the game. We'll see how I am feeling, talk to the training staff, talk to the coaches, put it all together."

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com