Queries and Quips at Super Bowl Media Day

During Super Bowl week, players are determined to focus on the big game and block out distractions. But during the ritual of Media Day, anything goes — from political endorsements to marriage proposals.

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RENEE MONTAGNE, host:

Four days and counting until the New England Patriots play the New York Giants in Super Bowl XLII. But the real game before the game happened yesterday at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. Thousands of journalists swarmed the two teams on media day, putting football players to the ultimate test.

TOM GOLDMAN: Media Day takes the players out of their comfort zones and threatens their almighty focus. The guys who come to play in Arizona are thinking about pass routes and blocking schemes, not who they're going to vote for, but someone asked New York wide receiver Amani Toomer, so he answered.

Mr. AMANI TOOMER (Wide Receiver, New York Giants): I think I'm going to support Obama. Well, I like some of the things that he says about the health care and I like his ideas on the stimulus package for the economy. Thank you.

GOLDMAN: Toomer wasn't knocked off balance. In fact, he sounded quite informed, although Hillary Clinton wouldn't be too happy. He dealt with politics okay but then again, Toomer didn't have to deal with Ines. She was the reporter - wearing a wedding dress, waiting impatiently for her turn with New England quarterback Tom Brady.

Mr. TOM BRADY (Quarterback, New England Patriots): To the woman on the wedding dress.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Ms. INES GOMEZ-MONT (Reporter, TV Azteca): Brady, I'm in love with you.

Mr. BRADY: Are you really?

Ms. GOMEZ-MONT: Will you marry me, please.

Mr. BRADY: Wow, I've never had a proposal.

Ms. GOMEZ-MONT: Marry me, please, Brady.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Ms. GOMEZ-MONT: I love you, Brady.

Mr. BRADY: What's your name first?

Ms. GOMEZ-MONT: Ines, Ines.

Mr. BRADY: Ines? It's a beautiful name, Ines.

Ms. GOMEZ-MONT: Marry me. I'm the real Ms. Brady.

(Soundbite of laughter)

GOLDMAN: Ines, get in line. Tom Brady has morphed this season from an incredibly good quarterback into a pop culture icon. Impossibly handsome, the best at his high profile job, and dating - sorry, Ines - a supermodel. Brady is the it guy at the it sports culture event of the year. He told a reporter recently he's also a Zen kind of guy. Considering all the attention, the constant paparazzi, the reporter asked Brady yesterday, how's your Zen-ness holding up?

Mr. BRADY: I'm pretty low key. I'm pretty consistent. Hopefully, that's Zen-like. I just try to never be too up, never be too down and just take things in stride.

GOLDMAN: Oh, yeah? Try this one from another reporter - you've got this unbelievable platform, you have a gift, what do you want to say?

Mr. BRADY: That's a deep question. My purpose in life? Is that what you're going to (unintelligible)?

(Soundbite of laughter)

Mr. BRADY: My God. I throw a football.

GOLDMAN: Score another one for Brady who left Media Day in stride.

Tom Goldman, NPR News.

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