ShareThis Page
Sports

Super Bowl Notes: Giants' Brown finally gets shot at title

Jerry DiPaola
| Sunday, Jan. 28, 2001

TAMPA, Fla. - The New York Giants' Lomas Brown, 37, started every game this season at offensive left tackle. But he pays for it. His teammates constantly tease him about his age.

'I walked in the cafeteria (last week), and they asked me if I had on my long dress socks, you know how older people wear shorts and long dress socks and hard shoes,' said Brown, who is in his 16th season and wants to play through his 20th. 'Of course, when I get to my fruit they ask me if I have to stay regular. I catch it all. I'm glad I'm around to be able to catch some of this.'

The Giants signed Brown as a free agent last March after he was released by the Cleveland Browns because of what he called a personality conflict with former coach Chris Palmer. 'That was the first time I had self-doubt,' Brown said.

But a day later, Giants coach Jim Fassel called and encouraged Brown to visit. 'I liked what I saw,' he said.

Brown's teammates carry great respect for him, and meetings don't start until he's in the room. Brown is part of an unusual collection of offensive linemen that includes three players (Brown, center Dusty Zeigler and left guard Glenn Parker) who have been with the team only one season. In the NFL, it often takes longer for lines to mesh properly.

'We weren't a lot of high-paid guys,' he said of the three players who were paid a total of about $4.3 million this season. 'We didn't come in like a Bruce Smith or Deion Sanders (with the Washington Redskins). We came in with a lot fewer accolades so people didn't expect a lot from us. It was really easier for us to come in and fit in.'

BILLICK'S EGO
Baltimore Ravens coach Brian Billick apparently displays the same confident, self-assured manner with his team that he has thrown at the media all week.

Asked about his ego, Billick claimed he takes 'my job ... the obligation to the Modells, my team, the organization and the city of Baltimore very seriously.'

'What I don't take seriously is you all (reporters) and myself. I think we sometimes make this a little bigger than it is.

'And you don't do this job unless you're confident, you're self-assured. You don't stand up in front of 53 millionaires, nowadays, pro players and say, 'Guys, follow me, because I kind of think I know what I'm doing.' It doesn't work. That's not one of the great Gipper speeches.

'You've got to stand up there and say, 'Guys, this is the way it's going to be, and this is the way we're going to do it' for no other reason than there's got to be a singular decision.'

He said that if outsiders perceive his confident reaction to the media as egotistical or arrogant, 'There's not much I can do to control that.'

WHAT ABOUT BANKS•
Ravens offensive coordinator Matt Cavanaugh said backup quarterback and former starter Tony Banks was partially responsible for the team's early failings.

'We were 5-3 at the point when we pulled him, but a couple of those losses were a direct result of some of his plays, and he knew that,' said Cavanaugh, who played and coached at Pitt. 'I think he's disappointed that we used him as a bit of a scapegoat.'

Said Banks: 'This is definitely not the way I envisioned being in the Super Bowl. I have some things to be proud of, and I helped this organization turn around. But if I don't get the opportunity here, I'll get the opportunity elsewhere.'

Quarterback Trent Dilfer has led the team to a 10-1 record since Banks was benched.

SLEEPING WITH THE ENEMY
Former Steelers linebacker Kevin Greene is on the other end of a microphone these days, working as an NFL analyst for ESPN.

'This helps me feel a part of the game. I didn't have to quit cold turkey,' he said.

Greene said he has lost about 12 pounds to get to 230 since he finished playing a year ago with the Carolina Panthers.

Like many former players, Greene wants no part of coaching.

'Coaching is long hours,' he said.

THEY WERE THE BEST
Referee Gerry Austin, who completed his 19th season as an NFL game official, will work his third Super Bowl tonight. He also was referee for Super Bowls XXIV and XXXI (both in New Orleans). Austin and game officials were chosen because they were the top-rated veteran officials at their respective positions this season.

HOPING TO MAKE A BUCK
People hoping to secure tickets, most likely for resale, are offering between $1,500 and $2,000 per ticket outside the Marriott.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me