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LeSean McCoy on Brady-Mahomes matchup: It’s Jordan vs. Kobe

Super Bowl Extra Points | The Bucs running back knows firsthand their greatness, having now played with both quarterbacks.
The Lakers' Kobe Bryant, left, and the Bulls' Michael Jordan talk during a game on Dec. 17, 1997, at the United Center in Chicago.
The Lakers' Kobe Bryant, left, and the Bulls' Michael Jordan talk during a game on Dec. 17, 1997, at the United Center in Chicago. [ VINCENT LAFORET/AFP | TNS ]
Published Feb. 3, 2021|Updated Feb. 3, 2021

LeSean McCoy has watched both Patrick Mahomes and Tom Brady up close the past two seasons. And he has a slam dunk comparison for the star quarterbacks.

“I’m a huge Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan fan, and that’s the best way I can look at it,” the Bucs running back said.

“You look at a guy like Brady, and he’s like Jordan — established, older. He don’t Air Jordan dunk anymore, but he’s beating you with the fadeaway. I think of Pat as the young Kobe. Like, he’s coming. The league’s aware of him, and he’s making plays.”

McCoy spent last season with the Chiefs and Mahomes, helping them win the Super Bowl. The 12-year veteran signed with the Bucs during the offseason and is in position to win another, this time with Brady.

He sees obvious differences in the 25-year-old Mahomes and the 43-year-old Brady but also major similarities in their hunger for greatness.

“They both are competitive, extremely competitive,” McCoy said. “They always want to win at any cost. They have that superstar quality to them. I think that Pat’s younger and Brady’s older, more established, so successful, and I think Pat is chasing that. I think he’s on the verge of being the next Brady.”

McCoy is also impressed how both can be critical of their own play, even during victories, with a passion to be perfect.

“I’m blessed to see that, I really am,” said McCoy, 32. “In like 10 years or something, I’ll be saying ... how Pat is the new Brady.”

A double play for the Suhs

Ndamukong Suh has twice as many reasons to be excited these days — or is that three? Not only is the Bucs defensive tackle heading to the second Super Bowl of his 11-year career, but his wife is pregnant, with twins.

“To say we are excited is an understatement,” Katya Suh told People, sharing exclusive maternity photos. “And for it to be here in Tampa, too, is just kind of a whirlwind, to say the least.”

Katya told the magazine she has struggled with morning sickness during a difficult first trimester but is “looking forward to the challenges of parenthood.”

She said they know the gender of the twins, however, “We want to make it a little extra fun for friends and family, so we’re going to wait until they decide to come to the world to share that piece.”

And her plans for Sunday’s game?

“I will be there,” she told People. “That’s the one thing that he and I have discussed. I’ve known Ndamukong since college (at Nebraska), so this is something that I feel like it’s such a life monument, and something that I couldn’t miss my best friend having that opportunity and winning that.”

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Crosby has the shot, but doesn’t take it ... yet

Well you certainly cannot accuse Sidney Crosby of sucking up to his buddy.

The Penguins star was recently asked for his Super Bowl prediction. You would expect his answer to be as easy as shooting into an empty net, considering he and Brady have been friends for years. Not so much.

“That’s a tough one,” Crosby said. “It’s hard to bet against Tom Brady for the amount of times he’s been there. But I’m going to have to think about this one. You’ll have to ask me a little later in the week.”

In 2013, Crosby was diagnosed with an abnormality in his C1 and C2 vertebrae to go with the post-concussion symptoms he had been experiencing since 2011. According to Sportsnet, Crosby saw a specialist in Utah, where an MRI exam indicated the abnormality with the two vertebrae at the top of his spine. And who recommended the specialist? His pal Brady, then quarterback of the Patriots.

Super trivia

Name the starting quarterbacks at Florida, Florida State, Miami and the University of Tampa who also started a Super Bowl. Answer below.

Numbers game

$5,000

Bet placed on FanDuel Sportsbook for the Super Bowl coin toss. The bettor picked heads, for a potential payout of $9,850.

Quotable

“I’ve been asked several times to be part. ... It’s always such a big commitment. I’ve always kind of chickened out.”

— Dolly Parton, on taking part in her first Super Bowl, at least peripherally. The country music legend has a Super Bowl commercial for Squarespace, a company that helps users build and host their own website. The commercial includes Parton’s classic song 9 to 5 but tweaked to 5 to 9 for the advertiser; she’s using Squarespace to create a website for her new perfume, dollyfragrance.com.

Answer

Florida: Rex Grossman, Bears (SB 41); FSU: Brad Johnson, Bucs (SB 37); Miami: Jim Kelly, Bills (SB 25, 26, 27, 28); Tampa: Freddie Solomon, 49ers (SB 16, 19). Bit of a trick question since Solomon, a standout QB at Tampa (think a more-elusive Kyler Murray), was moved to receiver in the NFL. And no, Gator fans, you can’t count Cam Newton since he never started at UF.

Compiled by Times staff writer Anthony Perez with information from Times news services and Yahoo Sports.

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