|Brady the charmer holds court on Super Bowl Media Day|
|Written by Admin|
|Tuesday, 29 January 2008 16:34|
``Marry me'' the TV reporter from Mexico City said.
``I have a few Mrs. Bradys in my life,'' he answered neatly.
Trading the pocket for a podium near the 50-yard line, the NFL's reigning pretty boy was in All-Pro form Tuesday. Hard to believe anyone in sports could work a room better at the Super Bowl, even if this room happened to be the University of Phoenix Stadium and could seat 63,000 people.
For nearly an hour, the New England Patriots quarterback was the star attraction at media day. His effect was noticeable - nearly everyone appeared to walk away with a smile, positively charmed.
``Thanks, Prime,'' he said after briefly bantering with Deion Sanders.
``Do the right thing,'' he earnestly advised a preteen boy who somehow got a credential.
``I'm rooting for England, my roots,'' he told a British journalist who asked about rugby.
There was a model from ``Deal or No Deal,'' toting a silver case and working for ``Entertainment Tonight.'' ``Inside Edition'' and ``Access Hollywood'' and the NFL Network were well represented, too.
Brady came up with an answer for everything - yes, he said, girlfriend Gisele Bundchen planned to attend Sunday's big game against the New York Giants.
While other players might regard media day as a chore, he seemed to savor every moment, turning the session into a variety show with Tom Brady as the handsome, dimpled host.
``Someone have a dumb question? I need a dumb question,'' he said.
Prompted, one of the 200 or so reporters clustered around him shouted out: ``Who's your favorite band?''
``U2,'' he said without missing a beat.
Be it the weather in New Hampshire, his boyhood coach back home in the Bay Area or the ol' boondoggle play - an end-around with a kick, he was told - he handled each subject with ease, as if dissecting a cover-2 defense. He often slowly repeated questions, for playful effect.
``How is my Zen-ness holding up?'' he repeated.
``How do I feel about being the stud of the NFL?'' he asked.
Occasionally, Brady called a timeout. He'd pluck a camera off the tabletop in front of him and snap a picture of the assembled crush.
``I'm not going to remember this someday,'' he said.
Chances are, he'll get a few more opportunities. At 30, he'll play for his fourth Super Bowl title when the Patriots try to close out a perfect season with a win over the Giants.
For the record, Brady did talk a little about football. Just a bit, though, because he rarely got two questions in a row about the sport he plays.
``Either way, win or lose, this game is going to be history,'' Brady said.
Asked about his role on the Patriots, his status as the NFL's go-to guy and the belief by many that he's an American hero, he turned reflective.
``I throw a football. I happen to do that well enough to be on this platform,'' he said. ``I don't think any of us cure cancer.''
Humble, by all accounts.
``I love Tom Brady,'' Giants defensive end Michael Strahan said during his team's media session. ``He doesn't put himself above the guys. He's one of the guys, even though he has all these other things going on for him.''
A couple of days earlier, Brady avoided saying whether she would be at the game. Probably the effect of getting pounded by the paparazzi in New York last week when he limped into Bundchen's apartment with a walking boot and a bouquet of flowers.
On this day, Brady didn't try to dodge when an old pal asked him.
``Hi, Maria,'' he called out after spotting Massachusetts-born Maria Menounos, a correspondent for ``Access Hollywood'' and the ``Today'' show. ``A local girl. You want to suit up?''
She was easy to see, even from a back riser - she wore Brady's No. 12 Patriots jersey, one that he autographed. Brady cheerfully told a story about throwing her a pass, one that jammed her finger.
So when she wondered where Bundchen would be on game day, Brady gave a hint. He waved his arm toward the empty upper deck and said: ``I don't know where. She'll be around.''
Bundchen apparently isn't the only one who loves Brady.
Let's not forget the woman in the wedding dress. She was Ines Gomez Mont, an entertainment reporter for TV Azteca in Mexico City.
Brady played along but let her know, ``I'm a one-woman man.''
She could accept that.
``He is very gorgeous. I know Gisele is very gorgeous,'' she said. ``Good for them.''