Posts Tagged ‘Tampa Bay v New England’

With seats purchased in section 522 at Wembley Stadium, and my personal but irrational fear of heights, I had to stare at some random blokes arse in front of me as I ascended escalator after escalator before arriving at the entrance to the seated area.

Arriving and finding that I was 24 rows up from the small window into the Stadium I decided that I would do the typical tourist thing and just gawp in awe of the 85,000 seats in front of me, the holy Wembley Stadium grass resplendent in its new gridiron shaped map, complete with two stunning painted end zones, depicting the New England Patriots and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers official NFL typeface. I love seeing the NFL logo on the 50 yard  line.

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There is nothing like Wembley Stadium after an NFL makeover

 

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Each endzone at Wembley had huge inflatable helmets - I was nearest the Tampa Bay side of the field

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Unfortunately I had to wear a Jason Campbell top at Wembley - thanks to the security man for taking my pic

 

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Laurence Maroney is set for a monster game at Wembley

Laurence Maroney is set for a monster game at Wembley

I do love a good old-fashioned bit of predicting. We all pretend to have mystic powers, but about the only power we do have as human beings is the ability to completely forget what we boldly said WOULD happen the week before.

For what it is worth here are my predictions for the NFL International Game between the New England Patriots and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers taking place at Wembley stadium tomorrow.

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS – 42

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS – 10

First TD scorer – Laurence Maroney, RB, Patriots

Leading game rusher – Laurence Maroney, RB, Patriots

Leading game receiver – Wes Welker, WR, Patriots

Most outstanding offensive player – Tom Brady, QB, Patriots

Most outstanding defensive player – Barrett Ruud, LB, Buccaneers.

What about you – what are your predictions?

I can't wait to see #12 throw a bomb to #81
I can’t wait to see #12 throw a bomb to #81

Its now just under twenty-four hours until I park my rear in the gods of Wembley Stadium to witness two future Hall of Fame enshrinees have some fun beneath the giant arch and the drizzly London sky.

 
This will be my third year in a row attending a regular season NFL game at Wembley, having seen the New York Giants swim past the Miami Dolphins 13-10 (2007) and the New Orleans Saints outgun the San Diego Chargers 37-32 (2008).
 
It will be my 9th NFL game, having been present at six NFL pre-season games in the late 1980s and early 1990s.
 
Without doubt Tom Brady and Randy Moss are THE biggest names to come to Wembley in the three years of NFL International Series games.
 
Brady with his three Superbowl winners rings and two Superbowl MVP trophies and Moss with…. well bizarrely no Superbowl wins at all and only one appearance.
 
To any non-UK fans reading this and curious about the pre-game hype over on this side of the pond, I must say that it has barely registered a blip on the zeitgeist of contemporary popular culture.
 
There was quite a decent article about Brady in the Independent newspaper today – the writer James Corrigan managed to draft a whole page of text without mentioning William ‘the Fridge’ Perry. I did spot one mistake – he spelt Bernard Pollard, the Chiefs safety who knocked Brady out of the 2008 season, with an extra h Bernhard. Maybe Bernard thought he deserved the hard title for keeping the Patriots away from a fourth Vince Lombadi trophy.
 
Talking of Vince Lombardi trophies an email from the marketing bods at NFLUK said that every single Superbowl trophy will be at the official tailgate party – if that is really the case then that is simply amazing.
 
Maybe if no-one is looking Ill grab one of the three Redskins Superbowl trophies (XVII, XXII or XXVI) after all about the only trophy the Redskins will be adding to their display cabinet is ‘Worst offense in NFL history’.
 
Above all I love the fact the NFL is still committed to trying to expand the game around the world. I wonder how many NEW fans are going to Wembley tomorrow? I would be interested to see how many repeat offenders there will be attending?
 
Unfortunately one person who will not be making it three in a row in my Black Country pal Garry. Garry and his wife Heather had prepared a bar-b-q behind the stadium for my wife and I in 2007 and 2008. This time they are on a USA road trip. Gaz – the game simply wont be the same. That and the fact we will be pocket raped by Wembley Stadium catering services.
 
Lets hope the drizzle and the 0-6 Tampa Bay Buccaneers dont get in the way of some Brady to Moss fireworks.