NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — The Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks are all settled in for Super Bowl week.
And on Tuesday they had to navigate the weird, weird waters of media day at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.
After two days of minimal media appearances, the AFC and NFC champions were trotted out to face hordes of reporters looking to further break down the matchup between the Broncos’ top-ranked offense and the Seahawks’ No. 1 defense.
As CBS 2’s Otis Livingston reported, there was definitely a Jersey feel in the Prudential Center in Newark as the tribute band Tramps Like Us performed some of Bruce Springsteen’s greatest hits.
Oh, and there were also plenty of non-journalist types, celebrities and wacky wardrobes – costumes from Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart to Waldo of “Where’s Waldo fame — to create the spectacle that has become a media day staple.
The Broncos were first out of the gate, starting their media availability at 10:30 a.m. Seahawks players began speaking around 12:45 p.m..
As collected and measured as he is while standing in a pocket, Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning coasted through the circus, opining on his family’s favorite beer, politely evading silly questions about reality TV — and avoiding any wild pronouncements.
Reporters repeatedly brought up the word “legacy” as the 37-year-old Manning, a four-time NFL MVP who broke records by throwing for 55 touchdowns and 5,477 yards this season, sat through his hour-long session.
“I’ve been being asked about my legacy since I was about 25 years old. I’m not sure you can have a legacy when you’re 25 years old. Even 37,” Manning said. “I’d like to have to be, like, 70 to have a legacy. I’m not even 100 percent sure what the word even means.”
While Manning was the big draw for Denver, there was quite the crowd waiting for Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman, who blew his top in an epic postgame rant following the NFC Championship game.
Sherman was among the players asked to recall the craziest question that had been posed to him during media day.
“Somebody asked me about Justin Bieber – that’s the craziest thing so far,” he said.
Seahawks center Max Unger said the craziest question he’d heard was, “Is the Lombardi trophy filled with chocolate.”
Well, is it?
“I have no idea,” he said, laughing when he was asked if he would consider taking a bite out of it.
Also of intrigue for the Seahawks was media-shy running back Marshawn Lynch, who was fined this season for not making himself available to reporters. Lynch abruptly left the session Tuesday, walking out after 6½ minutes.
“You go get it. Ain’t no need to talk about it,” Lynch told Hall of Famer Deion Sanders during an interview televised on the NFL Network.
Asked if he was excited about the game, Lynch replied “Hell yeah.”
San Francisco 49ers cornerback Chris Culliver sparked a firestorm during last year’s media day.
“Ain’t got no gay people on the team,” Culliver, who later apologized, told comedian Artie Lange. “They gotta get up outta here if they do. Can’t be with that sweet stuff.”
Both teams got their first practices in Monday, with the Broncos working at the New York Jets’ facility in Florham Park, N.J., and the Seahawks at the Giants’ training center in East Rutherford, N.J.
“It’s been pretty unusual for a trip like this, just getting used to everything,” Seattle tight end Zach Miller said.
Super Bowl week officially kicked off Monday night with fireworks and a free concert at Liberty State Park.
Organizers handed out 5,000 tickets to the free show, but only about a third of the people showed up, the bitter cold partly to blame.
Those who braved the weather bundled up.
“It’s an experience, it adds to the whole overall event,” said Brian Ross from Atlantic City.
“The cold is irrelevant,” said Margo Chaly from Jersey City. “We’re football fans, the cold doesn’t matter.”
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(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)