Three silver Super Bowl trophies and one famous gray sweatshirt worn by the mastermind who won them all took a championship ride through the streets of Boston yesterday, passing thousands of screaming fans giddy over their New England Patriots.
On a warm winter day, grown-ups skipped work and kids skipped school to stand on snowbanks and trash cans for a glimpse of Coach Bill Belichick, quarterback Tom Brady, Super Bowl most valuable player Deion Branch and their teammates.
The Super Bowl champion New England Patriots parade through Boston in World War II-era amphibious boats.
(Steven Senne -- AP)
"This is like a reason to skip school, pretty much. I don't really like football," said 16-year-old Anastasia Exarchos.
Less than 48 hours after the Patriots won their third Super Bowl in four years, a 24-21 victory over Philadelphia, their journey ended with a "rolling rally" on World War II-era amphibious boats like the ones the Red Sox rode in their championship parade last fall.
In the lead vehicle, Belichick wore his trademark sweatshirt. He was surrounded by team owner Robert Kraft, vice chairman Jonathan Kraft and player personnel director Scott Pioli -- each clutching one of the team's three Vince Lombardi trophies.
Players and their families rode in other duck boats, which are usually used to carry tourists around Boston.
"This means more than anything in the world," tackle Matt Light told the fans. "You guys have been the greatest fans since Day One. This is the best season of my life."
Some players flapped their arms, ridiculing the touchdown celebration of Eagles wide receiver Terrell Owens. Fans threw T-shirts and posters at them to be autographed.
Defensive end Richard Seymour held out his fist for fans to gaze at his Super Bowl ring from another year. Tight end Daniel Graham and fullback Patrick Pass each held up three fingers for each championship, then raised a fourth.
One fan held up a sign reading "Next Stop Detroit." That's where the next Super Bowl will be held on Feb. 5, 2006.
-- From News Services