So it’s already T-minus six days until the Super Bowl, which means it’s only T-minus 24 hours until Media Day. Ahhh Media Day, the time when C-List celebrities from MTV and E! ask football players inane questions in the hopes of receiving ridiculous responses from those players inane enough to answer their queries.
Granted, two out of the past three Media Days have been pretty tame considering the New England Patriots have set a Belichickian tone to the festivities. But this year should be a little livelier. While there is no guarantee he’ll play on Sunday, Terrell Owens and his uninjured mouth will certainly be present Tuesday. However, to take a trip down memory lane, the Eagles, even with T.O. and Freddie Mitchell, are no 2002 Raiders or Buccaneers. Now THAT was a Media Day for the ages. Things are always going to be eventful when MTV Vee-jays with names like Gideon Yago have to come up with questions to suit the likes of both Warren “that’s why you’re not the Best Damn Sports Show. Period!” Sapp and Jon Gruden. But just because Sapp and Lincoln “he has been kidnapped and held hostage by some family until he can come up with more Super Bowl tickets. Any corporations willing to help, please let him know” Kennedy won’t be behind the microphones, doesn’t mean it’ll be a snoozer of a Media Day.
First of all, one needs look no further than the internet to get a preview of who will be appearing behind those microphones for the Eagles. Go to www.terrellowens.com/intro.html if you want to see the number one (and only) reason that I’d kinda, sorta, maybe like to have a player like T.O. on the Patriots. OK, well not really, but the beat of the “LET’S GO T.O.!” song is nothing short of infectious. Interestingly enough, my friend Julia Pudlin’s dad cited the site as the number one reason he would rather NOT be an Eagles fan. Love it or hate it, you will be humming the repeating lyrics, “do the bird, baby,” in your sleep after you watch this.
Compare T.O. to Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, who doesn’t even HAVE a website, let alone an annoyingly addicting introduction to it. In fact, I could only find two Patriots players who had websites. Tedy Bruschi’s is relatively mellow and modest with the standard bio that lets us know he has a child named Rex. Even clutch kicker Adam Vinatieri must be spending more time practicing his Super Bowl-winning field goals than spinning tracks for his Web site, which remains relatively modest, even as his kicking record becomes less so.
Yet don’t count out the Patriots to be as boring and predictable as their Web sites either. While Fred-Ex and T.O. will no doubt have something to say about anything that’s thrown their way, hearing what Bill Belichick has to say to Nickelodeon reporters is a fun time for all involved. Linebackers Willie McGinest and Bruschi are also always good for producing quality sound-bytes that are just as interesting as what T.O. and Fred-Ex would say, albeit classier. Plus it’s always fun to watch reporters fail miserably as they try to get the Patriots to say how great they are while the Pats come back every time with only the nicest things to say about their opposing team. I just love this group of guys!
I must say in all honesty the reason I probably love Media Day so much, other than the verbal garbage that most “reporters” emit, is it allows both teams to bask in the glory of making it to the Super Bowl. Come next Monday, the losing team will be too busy calculating the agonizing “what ifs” of blown opportunities to realize what an accomplishment it is to be one of two teams in a 32-team league to make it to the Super Bowl. The winner of the game will be the only successful team to come out of Jacksonville and the loser will face criticism that would make you forget they’d beaten at least two capable teams in the playoffs to make it to the Super Bowl in the first place.
Media Day may be the journalistic equivalent of a carnie sideshow, but it serves its purpose. With two teams that share such a passionate fandom, it helps everyone enjoy the ride just a little longer.