Super Bowl 2012: Patriots are first to arrive in Indianapolis
By Mark Maske,
The New England Patriots arrived in Indianapolis on Sunday, a week ahead of their Super Bowl meeting with the New York Giants.
The Patriots beat the Giants to the Super Bowl city by a day, with the Giants scheduled to travel on Monday.
“We’ll try to approach it in as much of a routine as we can,” Patriots Coach Bill Belichick said at a news conference Sunday evening. “Certainly there will be a lot of things that will be different this week. But there will be a lot of things that will be the same in terms of our preparation, our daily routines.”
The Patriots have qualified for their fifth Super Bowl appearance in the last 11 seasons with Belichick as their coach and Tom Brady as their quarterback, and are seeking their fourth Super Bowl triumph during that span.
“I think it all comes down to preparation and then obviously going out there and playing with confidence,” Brady said at his arrival-day news conference in Indianapolis. “We had a good week of practice, a couple really good days of preparation and trying to understand really the strengths and weaknesses of this Giants defense. We played them a while ago. I think they’ve changed a little bit. They’re certainly playing as well as anybody we’ve played all year. So we’ve got our work cut out for us.”
The Giants beat the Patriots during the regular season. They also beat the Patriots in the Super Bowl four years ago, denying New England an unbeaten 2007 season. Belichick said the Patriots aren’t seeking revenge for that defeat.
“I’ve been asked about that game for several days now,” Belichick said. “But really, all the games in the past, I don’t think really mean too much at this point. This game is about this team, this year. There really aren’t very many of us, coaches or players, that were involved in that game—and very few players, in relative terms, between both teams. We’re where we are now, and we’re different than where we were earlier in the season. The Giants are where they are now. I think they’re different than where they were at other points in the season.
“So to take it back years and years before that, I don’t think really has too much bearing on anything. I think the team that wins Sunday will be the team that performs the best, and we’re going to strive our preparations toward maximizing our performance on Sunday night.”
The Patriots are to practice this week at the Indianapolis Colts’ training facility. Asked about the level of hospitality he expects to experience during the week, Belichick referenced his failed fourth-down gamble late in a regular season loss to the Colts in 2009.
“I never had too much hospitality here until I went for it on fourth and two,” Belichick said. “And then since then, I’ve been greeted in a lot more friendly manner than I was in the past.”