Here come the Patriots

The Patriots arrived in Indianapolis on Sunday night with their coach smiling and joking around.

Suit and tie was the uniform of the day rather than hoodie.

All right, New England, who is this guy you brought to Lucas Oil Stadium and what have you done with Bill Belichick?

Someone asked the usually dour Belichick if he could expect some Hoosier hospitality from the fans of the arch-rival Colts during Super Bowl week.

“I never had too much hospitality here until I went for it on fourth-and-two,” he joked, referring to his 2009 gamble that failed at the New England 28 with 2:08 to go. “Since then I’ve been treated in a lot more friendly manner than I was in the past.”

Bill Belichick joking around. Seriously? If you’re a Giants fan, you’ve got to wonder. What mind game is he playing? Is his staff already taping our practices?

Maybe Belichick and the Patriots were buoyed by the pep rally that 25,000 fans attended in Gillette Stadium to see the team off. Owner Robert Kraft was especially touched by the turnout. He can remember when his team was fortunate to draw that many people to one of its games. Now he’s preparing for Super Bowl XLVI, Kraft’s sixth as owner of the club.

The Giants are set to arrive in Indianapolis later today.

* * *

Brandon Marshall caught four touchdown passes in the Pro Bowl yesterday as the AFC beat the NFC, 59-41.

It set a Pro Bowl record, but unless the Dolphins receiver is on the receiving end of soon-to-be free agent Peyton Manning’s passes next season, it’s like the mobster Sonny told his protégé, C, in “A Bronx Tale”: “Nobody cares.

Nobody cares.”

* * *

The big NHL news out of Ottawa yesterday wasn’t the All-Star Game, but the health of the league’s brightest star, Sidney Crosby.

The face of the NHL. Only 24 years old. And he can’t get on the ice. You think you’ve got problems?

Crosby has been limited to eight games this season after being sidelined for nearly a year with a concussion. But now it’s being reported that Crosby also has a neck problem.

The Pittsburgh superstar had initially complained of neck pain 13 months ago, but the injury remained undiagnosed until recently. A Canadian sports network says Crosby’s C1 and C2 vertebrae are injured. And although his agent says Crosby is not in danger, the neck injury is a fresh area of concern.

There’s already talk of a rift between the star player and the Penguins about the care dispensed by the team’s medical staff.

So as the Sidney Crosby injury saga continues its downward spiral, an unhappy ending looms on the horizon. One in which everyone loses.

One thought on “Here come the Patriots

  1. Glad the Pats celebrated pre Super Bowl ! The Giants chose not to …..Hopefully we will be celebrating after the game !!!!!! Go Big Blue !!!!!

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