Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Super Bowl preview news and notes

Three nonstars who might affect the game

David Thomas TE, Saints

I see Thomas running 5-yard curls and outs and QB Drew Brees having to throw for his hot receivers more than in almost any other game. I don't trust TE Jeremy Shockey staying whole for four quarters, so I see Thomas and RB Reggie Bush being huge in getting Brees out of trouble.

Raheem Brock DL, Colts

You'll see him inside, trying to shoot the A-gaps, and then at left end, trying to beat T Jon Stinchcomb outside. Depending on DE Dwight Freeney's availability, you could see Brock at a linebacker spot, too, chasing (RBs) Pierre Thomas and Bush sideline to sideline.

Jabari Greer CB, Saints

Peyton Manning is the only quarterback who throws into tight coverage consistently. That means Greer will be vital. The most likely scenario for one or more turnovers is for Greer to take educated guesses on balls.

Peter King, Sports Illustrated

NFL backs off Who Dat flap

The NFL backed away from moves to enforce trademark rights to the "Who Dat" chant by Saints supporters. Last month, the NFL sent letters demanding local businesses stop selling T-shirts bearing the slogan "Who dat?" part of the chant "Who dat say dey gonna beat dem Saints."

The NFL cited a 1988 trademark registered in Louisiana, claiming it had exclusive rights to sell paraphernalia with "Who dat?" on it. In response, Louisiana's attorney general sent a letter to the league defending the right of fans and vendors to the chant. And a congressman and senator protested to the league.

The NFL relented, telling Louisiana officials it would make no more claims on the chant and agreeing to send a letter to vendors informing them.

On the house

As the Colts return to Miami — site of all three of their previous Super Bowl appearances — so are approximately 200 employees and their guests, more than 400 in all. Owner Jim Irsay is footing the bill for his entire staff, from the maintenance crew to executive assistants.

"One of my greatest joys is to be able to share and uplift people," said Irsay, who provided a similar trip when the Colts traveled to Miami for Super Bowl XLI after the 2006 season. "This is what life is about. You realize what a rare opportunity this is, and the shared experience is where the magic comes from."

It's important, he added, that employees know "you see them."

Indianapolis Star

Freeney going "in the right direction"

Indianapolis coach Jim Caldwell sounded optimistic Friday that DE Dwight Freeney could play.

"He's trending in the right direction," Caldwell said.

Freeney, left, has been receiving treatment several times daily, trying to speed up the recovery after tearing a ligament in his right ankle during the AFC title game.

Meanwhile, WR Reggie Wayne gave the Colts a scare when he pulled up short on a route. But Caldwell said he previously hurt the soft tissue below his right kneecap and has played with pain for most of the season. So he's expected to play.

For the Saints, CB Randall Gay missed practice with a stomach illness but was listed as probable.

Associated Press

Hatin' on Peyton

RB Joseph Addai says Peyton Manning is a great teammate but added if he played for another team, he might hate the Colts quarterback.

"I think if I was on another team I wouldn't like him," said Addai, below. "I know a lot of (the media) just watch Peyton when he marches up the field and scores quickly. I would hate to be on the other side when that happens.

"I've been on the field watching him just do that and kind of sometimes forgetting my assignment because I'm watching him work. So I think if I was on the other side of the ball, I wouldn't like him. And I know most people don't."

New Orleans Times-Picayune

He wrote it

Watching Indianapolis is like watching a factory play football. The Colts are methodical, predictable, disciplined, mechanical. They don't run trick plays. Their offense hasn't shown a new formation, or even a new play, in months. Their defense rarely varies its fronts. The Colts win because no NFL team has better offensive timing, defensive discipline and overall precision. Review film of the Colts and you know exactly what they are going to do — the question is, can you stop them?

Watching New Orleans is like watching an outdoor cocktail party play football. The Saints are spontaneous, unpredictable, boisterous. They love trick plays. Every week the offense shows new formations and actions. The defense uses a zany style — blitzing way too much, gambling for interceptions way too often. No NFL team plays a more relaxed style or seems to be having so much fun. Review film of the Saints and you have no idea what they are going to do — they probably don't, either.

When the mechanized, cybernetic Colts meet the wacky, laissez-faire Saints, I for one am expecting a fantastic game.

Gregg Easterbrook,

Quote of the day I

"When we meet and talk, there's not this, 'We've got to win one for the city' speech.' That feeling permeates throughout the team. Fans remind us how important it is. Giving them something to be proud of is important."

Saints coach Sean Payton

Quote of the day II

"We don't riot. But we're going to party like it's 1999. And let me tell you, there's not enough beer. … This town is going to have one heck of a celebration. We're going to have a good time."

New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin on if the Saints win

Yes, one of those Lombardis

Saints quarterbacks coach Joe Lombardi never met his grandfather — Vince Lombardi died in 1970 and his grandson was born in 1981 — but he grew up in a house steeped in football tradition and Lombardi's influence. He saw Lombardi's Super Bowl rings, watched all the old NFL Films videos and dug various books on his grandfather off the family bookshelf.

Lombardi wanted to be a player, but when his career at Air Force was over, he was sent to Ohio to serve out his commitment. After two years out of the sport, he became restless and took a job coaching at the University of Dayton. From there, he went to the Virginia Military Institute, to the XFL, to Mercyhurst College, to the Atlanta Falcons in 2006 and, a year later, to the Saints. Now he is closer than ever to touching the league's championship trophy — named for his grandfather — and adding a Super Bowl ring to the family's collection.

Washington Post

What they're saying

The Kardashian Effect: Khloe marries Lamar Odom, and the Lakers win the NBA championship. Kim dates Reggie Bush, and the Saints are Super Bowl bound. Should the Saints pull the upset on Sunday, Kourtney Kardashian, left, may become the most wanted woman among athletes.

Melissa Jacobs,

Number of the day

438 Super Bowl XLIV will be the 438th game (counting all regular season and postseason games) the Colts have played since moving to Indianapolis in 1984. Between 1953 and 1983, the Colts played exactly 438 games. As of now, the Baltimore Colts and Indianapolis Colts have each won 230 games. So if Indianapolis wins, they will surpass the storied Baltimore Colts in total victories and Super Bowl wins.

Baltimore Sun

Memorabilia of the day

Peyton Manning Super Bowl XLI bobblehead. $26.47. Available at

• Indianapolis Colts vs. New Orleans Saints Super Bowl XLIV Official Two Tone Flip Coin. $87.96. Available at

Tickets: if price is no object

$36,929.95 Four club-level seats (section 213). Available at ticketexchangebyticket

Weather report

Miami, Super Bowl Sunday: High 66, low 52, mostly sunny, 0 percent chance of rain

Super Bowl preview news and notes 02/05/10 [Last modified: Saturday, February 6, 2010 5:27pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Luke Del Rio regains UF starting job, for now


    GAINESVILLE — Luke Del Rio is once again the starting quarterback for No. 21 Florida.

    Luke Del Rio provided a needed spark when he replaced starter Feleipe Franks and rallied Florida past Kentucky.
  2. Four questions the Lightning still has to answer

    Lightning Strikes

    FORT LAUDERDALE — The Lightning made its biggest round of cuts Monday, with some of the big-named prospects heading out.

    Tampa Bay Lightning forward Steven Stamkos (91) looks on from the bench during a shift change at Lightning hockey training camp in Brandon on Monday (09/18/17). In background on right is Nikita Kucherov (86). DIRK SHADD   |   Times  

  3. Nine Florida football players, 62 felony complaints in fraud scandal


    GAINESVILLE — The fraud scandal that has engulfed the University of Florida's nationally ranked football team for weeks exploded Monday with the first detailed accounts of criminal accusations that threaten to derail the Gators' season.

    Florida Gators wide receiver Antonio Callaway (81) runs the ball during the Outback Bowl in January at Raymond James Stadium. [CHARLIE KAIJO   |   Times]
  4. Where Rays shortstop Matt Duffy's lost season leads

    The Heater

    BRADENTON — In a perfect world Matt Duffy would have been in New York on Monday with his Rays teammates enjoying the final off day of the year. Instead, he was on Field 4 at Pirate City on a sweltering afternoon, trying to restart his season.

    Rays shortstop Matt Duffy plays in his first game (since rehab was aborted) with the club's instructional league on Monday at the Pirate City baseball field and spring training complex in Bradenton [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD  |  Times]
  5. Vinny Lecavalier's jersey retirement will be another classic Vinny moment

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — He was the face of the franchise. He was taken first overall in the 1998 NHL Draft by a franchise at the bottom. Art Williams, the nutty Tampa Bay Lightning owner at the time, proclaimed the 18-year-old from Ile Bizard, a Montreal borough, "the Michael Jordan of hockey."

    Vincent Lecavalier makes a break for the net while playing an exhibition game on Sunday (9/24/17) with the 2017 U.S. Women???‚??„?s National Team at Amalie Arena in Tampa. Lecavalier was the captain of the Tampa Bay Lightning for the 2000???‚??€œ2001 season and between the 2008???‚??€œ2013 and spent his first 14 NHL seasons with the Tampa Bay Lightning before signing with the Philadelphia Flyers.