Thursday, January 29, 2009

So, this is a football

Even though it meant stepping outside our comfort zone, we tackled the biggest show in Tampa Bay this week -- the upcoming Super Bowl XLIII and all of the sideshow atmosphere that comes with it.

It truly is like a huge carnival. Stretch limos. Super Bowl parties. ESPN and NFL Network sound stages. People wearing Steelers and Cardinals gear. And, yes, lots of sunburned people carrying bulky bags full of deflated footballs, jerseys and shiny helmets. Lots of them, many more than what we're used to seeing with hockey.

Though we saw a few big names -- Hall of Famer Joe Montana and Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan -- we were limited in the autographs we could obtain.

Between overzealous security and athletes' unkept promises to sign "on the way back," Colin was happy to add two identifiable autographs -- retired offensive lineman Jonathan Ogden, left, and Tampa Bay Buccaneer Warrick Dunn -- to his mini Super Bowl XLIII football yesterday afternoon.

There's another, on the other side of the football, but I'm still trying to figure out who it is. I've checked current NFL rosters, but no names match up. Does anyone know who it is?

Still, it's like we say, one's, or in this case, two, maybe even three, are better than none.

Addendum (Feb. 2): Last Friday, while hounding the Philadelphia Flyers, John Lynch, a former hard-hitting defensive back for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Denver Broncos, signed the ball.

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