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Tuesday, January 29, 2008
All the Super Bowl news you can't live without

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If you're tired of the position-by-position breakdown of the Patriots and Giants, you've come to the right place.

We have all the Super Bowl information you know you need.

• Super Bowl News: MONDAY


Whack a Patriot!
Just in time for the Big Game -- possibly patent pending, we'll have to check with the NFL's copyright lawyers -- New York's Newsday has come up with an online flash game so shameless, so blatantly biased, it's a wonder the rival New York Post didn't come up with it first: presenting the Tom Brady Whack-a-Mole game, which allows you to, well, smack the New England Patriots' quarterback with a virtual mallet.

Fun for the whole family, right? Er, not exactly.

After test-driving the game (for research purposes only -- why would anyone wish model-bedding, dimple-chinned Tom Terrific anything but continued prosperity?), Page 2 is disappointed to report that beating down Brady is actually quite difficult, thanks to clunky controls. Unless, of course, the game is simply true-to-life, simulating the total lack of punishment Brady took in the pocket this season.

Whatever the case, we found the game a bit dull.

Still, we're pretty sure Mercury Morris could play for hours.
--Patrick Hruby

A Beantown Beatdown

My fellow comrades currently in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, I have a favor. Actually, no. It's an order.

SHUT UP! SHUT UP! SHUT UP!

After reading on Monday that New England fans are "smarter, classier and healthier" than New York fans, I agreed. Why? Because I'm a New England-educated Boston sports fan, which means I'm arrogant (and lately, often in first place).

But then I read the papers today and wondered where that twisted research came from? Was it from Roger Clemens' attorneys?

First I learned that the fine leaders of the City of Boston are already complaining that the Patriots' victory parade must be scheduled for the same day as the presidential primary in Massachusetts. Then I learned that the Boston Globe is already hawking a book titled "19-0: The Historic Championship Season of New England's Unbeatable Patriots".

The Patriots are 18-0! They haven't won anything yet!

I'm sorry, let me introduce you to a friend of mine. Hey, reality ... these are my friends from back home. I don't think you two have met ...

This is starting to smell like 2003 all over again. Remember when the Fenway Park grounds crew painted the World Series logo on the field -- three hours before the first pitch of Game 7 of the ALCS? Since we're all so educated, I'm sure we all do.

So, one more time in case you're too busy deciding whether to vote or paint your face on Tuesday ...

SHUT UP! SHUT UP! SHUT UP!
--Mike Philbrick

I just called to say "I love you (and I'd like some tickets)"

The voice message on Adalius Thomas' cell phone says the following: "If you're calling for tickets, beat it."

Well … that's rude. I wasn't calling for tickets. I was calling for a field pass. Big difference.

Anyway, here are a few voice mail messages of other Super Bowl players:

Troy Brown: "If you are Bill Belichick calling to cut me, press 1. All others, press 2."

Randy Moss: "If you are calling to inform me of a restraining order, please consider my generous offer of straight cash, homey, to withdraw your charges."

Tom Brady: "If you are calling to ask about my ankle … PLEASE! GET ME HELP! BELICHICK WON'T LET ME SEE A DOCTOR! HE SAYS DOCTORS ARE FOR THE WEAK-MINDED! PLEEEEEEEEEASE HELP ME! I BEG OF YOU! SO … MUCH … PAIN!"

Plaxico Burress: "If you are calling for an ill-advised boast, then you've called the right place! I will return your call as soon as I think of something new and stupid to say."
-- DJ Gallo


This day in Super Bowl history

January 29, 1995

Super Bowl XXIX: San Francisco 49, San Diego 26

Steve Young threw a Super Bowl-record six touchdown passes, and the 49ers became the first franchise to win five Super Bowls. Sadly, it was Junior Seau's only shot at a Super Bowl and he retired 11 years later.


Get to know the New England Patriots
FACT: Pierre Woods once drove 18 hours -- from Ann Arbor, Mich., to Tampa, Fla. -- without stopping to rest.
(possible) FACT: Pierre Woods is in an astronaut love triangle and/or wears adult diapers.

FACT: Laurence Maroney got his nickname, "Kool-Aid," because as a child he tried to douse a fire in his backyard by pouring Kool-Aid on it, but the sugar in the drink only made the fire grow.
(possible) FACT: The Kool-Aid Man is a pyromaniac arsonist and is always bursting through walls to get away from fires he started.

FACT: Nick Kaczur worked construction for two years before entering college.
(possible) FACT: Tom Brady has been whistled at by construction workers since college.

FACT: Benjamin Watson's mother was a synchronized swimmer at Maryland.

(possible) FACT: Benjamin Watson's father is one of these two men.
-- DJ Gallo


Still more Brady photo analysis
Pictures from New England's first practice in Arizona:

Aaaaaaaah! They are trying to conceal it with tape, but you can see the bone jutting out of his ankle! Oh, the humanity!

His shoulder is dislocated! … and his elbow! … and his wrist! We are surely doomed!

Tom Brady is literally falling apart! His ear came off in his helmet! Whoa is us!
-- DJ Gallo


Souper Bowl
Among the many things New York and New England are famous for they share a rich heritage regarding a particular gastronomic specialty: clam chowder.

This works out well for the devotees of Soup Night, a weekly gathering that takes place in a Brooklyn, N.Y. apartment. Basically, lots of people convene every Sunday evening, make a really humungous pot of soup (the variety changes each week), and then eat soup, eat more soup, and eat still more soup, until the soup's all gone. (Okay, they drink some beer, too.)

With two chowder-centric regions facing off in the Super Bowl, the Soup Night crew has decided to make two soups this Sunday: New England clam chowder and Manhattan clam chowder. Page 2 caught up with Soup Night host Dan Griffin to get the full scoop on the upcoming festivities.

Page 2: So what are you calling this Sunday's gathering -- the Soup-er Bowl, or Slam Chowder, or what?

Dan Griffin: Both, actually. It's going to be the Souper Bowl Super Bowl, and the featured event is going to be Slam Chowder. The two chowders are going to go head-to-head.

P2: You mean you're gonna have a taste test?

DG: No, it's a lot simpler than that. We're going to make two really big pots of chowder, and whichever team you're rooting for, you have to eat the appropriate soup. And whoever finishes their pot of soup first will win a prize. [Noticeable pause.] Which we haven't decided on yet.

P2: You mean it's just a gluttony contest?

DG: Basically, yeah. It's a way of saying, "I like my football team more than yours, so I'm gonna eat more soup."

P2: What if you more people rooting for one team than for the other?

DG: I haven't really thought that part out, but I think we can make sure the teams are fairly even. I don't like either one of these teams, frankly -- I'm from Alabama, so I'm more interested in 'Bama vs. Auburn.

P2: Hey, what about the clams? If they're coming from local New York-area waters, wouldn't that give the Manhattan clam chowder an unfair advantage?

DG: I've actually thought about that, so we may try to get, y'know, a neutral clam.

P2: Speaking of which, it's pretty convenient for you that the Super Bowl ended up featuring two teams from areas famous for chowder. What would you have done if the Packers and Chargers had won the conference championship games?

DG: We were all set for the Packers: beer and cheese soup. But I have no idea what kind of soup they eat in San Diego. It's barely even a real place to me. We might've just had to serve water.
-- Paul Lukas