Joseph Jacobs / WEBN-TV

By Brian Danuff 1/30/18

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Thousands of fans and reporters flocked to the Xcel Energy Center with excitement and intrigue as Opening Night for Super Bowl LII got underway.

The star players and head coaches of the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles each met with the media for an hour on Monday night, discussing a variety of topics from the hype surrounding the game to what it takes to get Bill Belichick to smile.

“Man, I have no idea,” Tom Brady said. “Navy. Lacrosse. Lawrence Taylor. Bon Jovi. Those four.”

“I’ve only seen him smile a couple of time and it’s usually late at night around this time of year after we win a Super Bowl.” said wide receiver Danny Amendola. “That’s how I plan on making him smile. I don’t have any idea how to get him to smile any other way.”

The Eagles, going up against one of the most successful dynasties in the history of the sport, know they’re heavy underdogs, but refuse to believe that’s a bad thing.

“We’ve had a chip on our shoulder the entire year,” said tight end Zach Ertz. “No one picked us at the beginning of the year. No one picked us after Carson got hurt. No one picked us first round, second round, the NFC Championship. We’re just excited to be here, the chip on our shoulder will never leave. I think being in the NFL you have to have one.”

Nick Foles, starting at quarterback in place of the injured Carson Wentz, welcomes his David vs. Goliath matchup with Brady: “He’s one of the greatest to play the game. I’m excited about the challenge. When you play this game, you want to play against the best, and you really want to play against the best of this stage. I’m glad, I’m excited to play in the Super Bowl this Sunday.”

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