The Super Bowl brings out the best in guests. Here are some exchanges from the week of the game—and one, with a halftime star, from the morning after.
This is an article from the Feb. 14, 2011 issue
Bengals wide receiver
DP:Chad, are you changing your name back to Johnson?
CO: I'm not going to mess up my money because you want my name back to Johnson. I like Ochocinco. I laugh all the way to the bank.
DP:There was a report that you were going to change your name?
CO: You don't listen to reports. I have my own [news] network. If Darelle didn't report it, and I didn't report it, it's Ocho.
DP:Darelle, you covered Reggie Wayne in the playoffs. He was upset that Peyton Manning only threw to him one time. When quarterbacks avoid you, do you take that as a compliment?
DR: I like competition. I really do. I expected them to come at me, but they only came at me one time.
DP:Do you get bored at any point?
CO: Yes, he does.
DR: That's what I fight. I fight boredom. Because I want the challenge. I want to compete.
Jets quarterback (right)
Dan Patrick:Did you watch the replay of you and [quarterbacks coach] Mark Brunell on the sideline in the AFC Championship Game? I'm talking about the pick-six. The booger wipe.
MS: It was a phantom booger wipe. You gotta understand, Mark Brunell is like my big brother. More like my dad at times. I told him right away, "I'm so sorry." He's like, "Are you kidding me? Only 55 million people saw it. Don't worry." I'm just worried because the cameras aren't going to be there when he gets me back. And he will get me back. And that is going to be a problem.
DP:What did you think of Antonio Cromartie calling Tom Brady an a-hole?
MS: I'm sure other DBs have called him worse. And that's a good thing. If you're a quarterback and they're calling you that, that's not a bad thing. [Brady] doesn't care. He didn't lose an ounce of sleep over that. In this position you gotta be ready for stuff like that. People take shots at you. Hopefully I'll win a couple of Super Bowls and there will be some upset DBs. I think it was a form of respect.
DP:So you aspire to be called an a-hole?
MS: In the right sense. In a football-only way, not off the field.
Black Eyed Pea (right)
DP:Were you nervous at halftime?
Fergie: Hell, yeah, I was nervous. Are you kidding me? Some of my notes were pitchy. That was just from all of the excitement, and I was nervous. But it was so exhilarating. So big. That's a once-in-a-lifetime thing, and it was just so exciting.
DP:Did you watch footage of Axl Rose swaying to prepare for playing Sweet Child O' Mine?
Fergie: Oh, no. Axl is one of my vocal idols. I've emulated him for years.
DP:Did you feel for Christina Aguilera after her national anthem?
Fergie: I did. It's such a huge venue. Your nerves just take a hold of you, so I completely understand. She's one of the best singers of our time, so nobody can take that away from her. You get nervous at these things. We're human.
DP:If you had to pick a college now, and it couldn't be Texas, which school would it be?
CM: There are going to be people who kill me for saying this, but I think TCU is a great program. Gary Patterson is a great guy, great coach. With what they just did, and going into a BCS conference—it's a great school.
Hall of Fame coach and Fox NFL analyst
DP:How much did you worry about your players off the field during Super Bowl week?
JJ: I wanted them to get it out of their system the first couple of days. It wouldn't have bothered me if guys had gone to strip clubs the first day or two, because I didn't have them on curfew for Monday and Tuesday before the Super Bowl. Get it out of their system. They're young guys.
DP:You wouldn't go with them, would you?
JJ: Please. Are you crazy? I go to bed at 10 o'clock. I can barely stay awake.
Hall of Fame running back
DP:Could you have split time at running back?
ES: I would not have wanted to split time. Maybe later in my career I was O.K. with splitting time, but early on I felt I couldn't trust the next man to do the job the way that I was going to do the job. So I wanted to be on the football field at all times.
Now Hear This
Listen to the podcasts at danpatrick.com/interviews
1. Rams QB Sam Bradford picks his rookie of the year.
2. Hall of Famers Joe Montana and Jerry Rice visit the set.
THE FINE PRINT: When the Packers went up 21--3, Steelers fans briefly switched the giant screen in Cowboys Stadium to Undercover Boss.