With the first Super Bowl in the New York metropolitan area just days away, both the Broncos and the Seahawks put in light practice sessions on Friday.
FLORAL PARK, NEW JERSEY, UNITED STATES (JANUARY 31, 2014)(NFL) - Just days away from the Super Bowl, the Denver Broncos and the Seattle Seahawks loosened up with indoor practice sessions on Friday (January 31).
At 37, and in just his second season with the Broncos after he was released by the Colts, he is playing the best football of his career, setting a string of passing records, including the most touchdowns in a single season.
Champ Bailey, one of the Bronco Veterans, is now in his 15th season overall and 10th with the Broncos, nearing the end of a decorated career, Bailey is on the game's biggest stage for the first time and has a single focus.
"We've been out to dinner, did things, site seeing but this is a business trip and we've got a job to do and the only reason we got on a plane was to win a game and that's what we need to start focusing on," he said.
The Seahawks are making just their second appearance in the Super Bowl, the NFL's end-of-season finale, and bidding for their first win with a youthful team brimming with bright-eyed optimism.
Despite their focus on defense, their hopes could well depend on the performance of their young quarterback Russell Wilson, who is in just his second season in the NFL. He told reporters earlier in the week that he was fortunate to get a first hand look at the Super Bowl last year.
"I went to the Super Bowl last year. I was there early doing some broadcasting, but I was also there to watch. I watched pregame warm ups and halftime. I watched all the things that it takes throughout a game to get ready, just noticing how long the day is. It's really a five-hour day. I get there on a normal basis three hours before the game. I go out two hours before the game and loosen up, visualize. Then, I go out about an hour before the game and throw with the receivers. You've got to understand that your emotions, your energy, your adrenalin, all of those things will be running wild, so you've got to make sure that you calm that down and make sure that you time it up right. Just be relaxed. It's still going to be first, second and third down. It's still going to be red zone. It's still going to come down to a two-minute drive before the half and at the end of the game. Hopefully, I pull through and win the game for us."
Las Vegas bookmakers have installed Denver as slight favorites, although the odds makers do not have a great record of picking the winner, with the underdogs capturing five of the last six Super Bowls.
The only sure winner is the New York/New Jersey region. Officials estimate the Super Bowl will inject between $550 million to $600 million into the area at a time when tourism is normally down because of the chilly weather.
While the game will be played at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, the 80,000 capacity home ground for both the New York Giants and the New York Jets, Manhattan has been the Super Bowl's spiritual and commercial hub during the build up.
More than a dozen blocks around Times Square have been closed to traffic, transforming Broadway into a carnival of Super Bowl related attractions, including a concert stage and a 60-foot-high (18-meter) toboggan run.
Local officials expect a million people will visit the site, flocking to the city's bars and restaurants and watching the game on the giant screens while an estimated worldwide audience of more than 160 million people will tune in to watch the extravaganza unfold.