‘Twas The Night Before Super Bowl: The Most Shocking Stories Surrounding The Big Game
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The tales, lies, and exaggerations surrounding the Super Bowl are often more entertaining than the over-hyped game itself. With the eyes of most of the free world dissecting every aspect of the big game and the week leading up to it, there is always a good yarn to spill out of it.
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So gather around the 60-inch flat-screen for these not so kid-friendly ‘Twas the Night Before Super Bowl Stories.
The Max McGee Hangover Game
Once upon Super Bowl I there was a 34-year-old back-up wideout named Max McGee. The 11-year veteran figured he wouldn’t step onto the field for the inaugural Super Bowl in Los Angeles since he had caught only four passes all year. So, the fun-loving cocksman snuck out behind legendary coach Vince Lombardi’s back and hit up the Sunset Strip with an armful of American Airlines stewardesses. After a night of debauchery, McGee snuck back into the team hotel. Destiny came calling as starting wideout Boyd Dowler injured his right shoulder on the third snap of the game and McGee was called in. The night owl was so hungover he forgot his helmet in the locker room — you really can’t make this shit up. Wearing a borrowed helmet, McGee made history by scoring the first touchdown of Super Bowl I. He went on to catch six more passes for a total of 138 yards in the Packers' win.
Super Bowl 'XXX'
The Arizona Cardinals were on their way to making an improbable comeback against the Steelers in Super Bowl XLIII after Larry Fitzgerald's 64-yard sprint for a touchdown near the end of the game put the Cardinals up 23-20 with 2:37 left in the game. Unfortunately (well for some) viewers in the Tucson, Arizona television market were exposed to a different type of tight end when a clip from adult cable station Club Jenna interrupted the game. The game came back on just in time for the hometown fans to see Steelers’ Ben Roethlisberger’s fling a winning touchdown pass to Santonio Holmes with 35 seconds remaining.
Steelers' All-Night Card Game
One of the newest Super Bowl stories comes from former Steelers cornerback Bryant McFadden who recently revealed that him and some teammates, including star James Harrison stayed up all night before Super Bowl XLIII playing the card game Bourre. Watch him tell the story below.
Eugene Robinson's Blown Coverage
Stress levels can run high the night before a Super Bowl. It’s only logical they would want to blow off some steam. Falcons starting free safety Eugene Robinson took that too literally on the eve of Super Bowl XXXIII, when the 14-year veteran was arrested on charges of soliciting a BJ from an undercover cop in Miami. Wait, it gets worse. Earlier that day, Robinson, nicknamed the “Prophet” for his devout religious beliefs, received the Athletes in Action/Bart Starr Award, given annually to a player who best exemplifies outstanding character and leadership in the home, on the field and in the community. After the arrest, Robinson agreed to return the award and played in the game (of course he did), but couldn’t shake the bad karma as his team was pummeled by the John Elway-led Broncos 34-19.
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Broadway Joe’s Guarantee
When Jets quarterback Joe Namath brashly declared that “we’re going to win Sunday. I guarantee it,” the sports world went cray-cray. Not only were his Jets seven-point underdogs to the mighty Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III, but the flamboyant “Broadway Joe,”was known more for his party boy antics off the field than anything he had done on it. His brazen “guarantee” made front page headlines, but was laughed off as pure hyperbole. Although the history books list Namath as the game’s MVP (despite not throwing a touchdown pass in the game or any passes at all in the fourth quarter), the Jets ball-hawking defense and relentless running game were the ones who actually backed up Namath’s talk, controlling the game clock, while harassing the Colts’ QB Earl Morrall into throwing three three interceptions in a shocking 16-7 Jets’ victory.
Ray Lewis Murder Mystery
Former Ravens linebacker and current ESPN talking head Ray Lewis made headlines despite not even playing in Super Bowl XXXIV. Most diehard fans might recall the St. Louis Rams beating the Tennessee Titans 23-16 at the Georgia Dome in a thrilling goal line stand, but all everyone was talking about afterwards was the Hall of Fame linebacker being arrested on suspicion of double murder at an Atlanta nightclub after the game. Eventually Lewis was not charged in connection with the still unsolved murders but he plead guilty to a misdemeanor and was sentenced to 12 months probation.
Barett Robbins Goes to TJ
Raider Nation was asking how a 6'5, 300 pound giant could disappear on the eve of Super Bowl XXXVII in San Diego. Starting center Barret Robbins went AWOL after two days before the game. Robbins eventually did show up, explaining that he had a bipolar attack and went on a bender in Tijuana. While it sounds funny, a deeper look revealed that Robbins had been struggling with severe mental illness throughout his career. Robbins sat out of the game and the shellshocked Raiders were pummeled 48–21 by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and former coach Jon Gruden, Sadly, Robbins would never play another snap in the NFL, his life becoming a series of arrests that culminated in serving prison time.
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Stanley Wilson Blows It
Cocaine is a very powerful drug. Stanley Wilson had been suspended the entire 1985 and 1987 seasons for his love of the booger sugar, but he cleaned up his act in 1988, helping the Cincinnati Bengals reach Super Bowl XXIII. However, just before the team’s final meeting before the big game, Wilson went back to his room to get his playbook. Well, that’s what he told the coaches. The versatile running back was found in the hotel bathtub, having succumbed to his inner demons. Head coach Sam Wyche left him off the roster, and Wilson could only watch his team lose a nail-biter to the 49ers.
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