Mazz: 5 Takeaways From Super Bowl Opening Night

By Tony Massarotti, 98.5 The Sports Hub

Super Bowl Media Day was a made-for-TV waste of time long before it became a real, made-for-TV waste of time, but the Patriots and Los Angeles Rams were present and accounted for last night. And there were actually a few nuggets worth discussing as the teams prepare for Super Bowl LIII this week.

Among them.

1. Devin McCourty and the threat of retirement.

ATLANTA, GEORGIA - JANUARY 28: Devin McCourty #32 of the New England Patriots talks to the media during Super Bowl LIII Opening Night at State Farm Arena on January 28, 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Wait … what?! Yes, you heard that correctly. Devin McCourty was asked about the possibility of hanging it up after the season and offered up the following response.

“I don’t know for sure,” McCourty said. “I do look at it if we can win this game, win it with my brother, I don’t know what else I could do that would top that. I’m just trying to make sure I enjoy this season and enjoy these last couple of days with these guys.”

OK, two possibilities here: first, McCourty is going to retire and just hasn’t told anyone, at least until now; second, he’s angling for a new deal because he’s entering the final year of his contract and he has no intention of restructuring or being cut.

Regardless, for all of the talk about the Patriots taking nothing for granted third year and being focused, this was an odd time to introduce this topic.

2. Nickell Robey-Coleman got a talking-to from someone.

Jan 28, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; Los Angeles Rams defensive back Nickell Robey-Coleman (23) during Opening Night for Super Bowl LIII at State Farm Arena. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Not long after suggesting that age has “taken its toll” on Tom Brady, Rams defensive back Nickell Robey-Coleman said his comments were taken out of context. Predictable, right? Sometime before media day, someone pulled aside Robey-Coleman and told him how foolish and tactless it was to take a jab at Brady, who is the greatest quarterback and arguably the greatest player in league history.

Now, know this: on the inside, the Rams are probably watching film and believing that Brady has slipped a little. And they’re probably right.’’

Which is why jabbing Brady is even dumber.

3. Before we rip Robey-Coleman, let’s not make Patrick Chung exempt.

Jan 28, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; New England Patriots strong safety Patrick Chung during Opening Night for Super Bowl LIII at State Farm Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

During the send-off rally in Foxboro, Chung took the microphone and said the Patriots would go to the Super Bowl and “kick their ass,” which obviously made its way back to the Rams. So what happened on Media Night? Chung walked back his comments, referred to himself as “a clown” and said he was playing to the crowd.

Again, all of that is probably true – that’s why coaches hate rallies. But rest assured that Chung got a talking to from someone with – or closely aligned with – the initials BB.

4. Josh McDaniels is still talking out of both sides of his mouth.

On the one hand, McDaniels took ownership for jilting the Indianapolis Colts last offseason, saying it was something he wasn’t necessarily proud of. On the other, McDaniels also said he was merely trying to make the best decision for him and his family.

Earth to Josh: enough with the family nonsense. We know it was Media Night and you were probably just trying to pacify people and move the crowd along. But you’ve already admitted that family had nothing to do with it, so don’t bring it up again now. It’s disingenuous.

5. Marcus Peters must hang out with Nickell Robey-Coleman.

Jan 28, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; Los Angeles Rams cornerback Marcus Peters (22) and cornerback Sam Shields (37) during Opening Night for Super Bowl LIII at State Farm Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Boy, the Rams just can’t get out of their own way, can they? Asked about the Rams’ offseason maneuvers, Peters likened the roster-loading to that of the Golden State Warriors, who added Kevin Durant and have won consecutive NBA titles, now 3-of-4.

The problem? The Warriors had already won a title before Durant even got there, then won two more before Demarcus Cousins joined. The Rams haven’t won anything yet and they seemingly keep giving the Patriots ammunition.

The bottom line to all of this: if you’re a coach, only bad things can happen on Media Night.

You can hear Tony Massarotti weekdays from 2-6 p.m. EST on the Felger & Massarotti program. Follow him on Twitter @TonyMassarotti.