Steelers, Cardinals begin Hype Week

Super Bowl blog

No Edgerrin James at the Arizona Cardinals press conference, but QB Kurt Warner, WR Larry Fitzgerald, WR Sean Morey, DE Bertrand Berry, WR Anquan Boldin and SS Adrian Wilson were available for questions before coach Ken Whisenhunt's press conference.

First of all, it was interesting because the Arizona press conference took place outside the Cardinals team hotel, in a white tent that looked for all intensive purposes like a wedding reception tent.

Of course, a wedding reception was nowhere near what was happening inside the tent. Instead, it was a bunch of sweaty reporters trying to push up to tables and ask questions to six players in 30 minutes ...

What came out of the press conference? Nothing earth-shattering, and as I said Immokalee native Edgerrin James wasn't available.

But it was interesting to see the differences between the two press conferences and also the two teams. The Steelers have this incredible tradition of success -- seven Super Bowls, five victories -- while the Cardinals hadn't won a division championship before this season since 1975.

That was reflected in the questions and answers -- the Steelers, especially QB Ben Roethlisberger, talked about what they learned in '05, while the Cardinals, in particular Berry, an 11-year NFL veteran, talked about what it meant to be here for the very first time.

From Berry: "I had to fight some emotions (today). I can't get too excited too early ... I'm humbled by this platform, this stage and this position."

"People get used to seeing the same teams (in the Super Bowl) ... for the majority of us, this is our first time ... I wanted to be part of something memorable."

From Roethlisberger (who was just 9-of-21 with two interceptions in 2005): "(Super Bowl XLV in 2005) was the first time I stayed nervous for an entire game ... I expect it to be different this time. I've been here before, and I kind of understand what went right and what went wrong last time."

From Steelers LB James Harrison: "There is a lot of tradition that comes with being a member of the Pittsburgh Steelers, and you want to be able to play as close to that level as possible. It is about pride. You don't want to be part of a team that doesn't perform at that level."

There were tons of other quotes, of course, but I thought these were about the most interesting.

Other tidbits and funny moments from the Cards press conference:

- Former USA Gymnast and gold medalist Dominique Dawes asked Whisenhunt his first question. The 32-year-old was representing Yahoo! Sports.

- One reporter began his question to Whisenhunt by asking if the Cardinals coach had any control over air-conditioning in the white reception-esque tent. Whisenhunt didn't laugh. Hey, at least the tent was well-ventilated ...


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