Monday, February 2nd, 2015


“Every once in a while in the NFL, you think you’ve seen it all. I will never get over throwing the ball in that situation.” – Cris Collinsworth on Seahawks’ decision to throw the ball

“After the wackiest lead up to a Super Bowl ever, the New England Patriots are the Super Bowl champions.” – Al Michaels

“He did his homework, he fired his shot, and made the play of the year.” – Cris Collinsworth on Malcolm Butler’s interception

GLENDALE, Ariz. – Feb. 1, 2015 – Following are highlights from NBC’s coverage of Super Bowl XLIX, in which the New England Patriots defeated the Seattle Seahawks 28-24.

Al Michaels (play-by-play) called his ninth Super Bowl alongside 15-time Emmy Award-winner Cris Collinsworth (analyst), in the Super Bowl booth for the third time. Two-time Emmy Award-winner Michele Tafoya reported from the Super Bowl sidelines for the third time, her second for NBC.

Michaels, Collinsworth and Tafoya were joined on-site by NBC Sports’ Football Night in America team of Bob Costas, Dan Patrick,  Tony DungyRodney HarrisonJosh Elliott, and Hines Ward. Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh joined NBC Sports’ Super Bowl XLIX coverage as a guest analyst.


Cris Collinsworth on Patriots CB Malcolm Butler: “You could tell he had done his homework. He saw the pick play coming. The minute his receiver came inside, he fired. If there was anything else on, he wasn’t going to get there. He was going to give up the game-winning touchdown. He did his homework, and he fired his shot, and made the play of the year.”

Al Michaels: “The sky was falling in early October, now there is a lot of bright sunshine in Foxborough and all over New England. After the wackiest lead up to a Super Bowl ever, the New England Patriots are the Super Bowl champions.”

Rodney Harrison: “What happens when you play against the Patriots, you try to outsmart yourself and think you have to do something that you normally don’t do. You can’t tell me one defense in the National Football League that can keep Marshawn Lynch from getting one yard.”

Tony Dungy: “On first-and-goal at the five, he runs four yards, almost scores there. You have to give him the ball again on second-and-one.”

Harrison: “He’s your very best player. You have to run the ball. No excuses for that.”


Collinsworth on Tom Brady: “Can you think of any other athlete in a similar situation? Basically, his integrity was under fire for two weeks. As they so often do, as they did after Spygate, as they did earlier this season, they rally around each other and win a Super Bowl. Where it goes from here, where it goes with Ted Wells’ investigation, nobody knows, but this is their night. Brady, Belichick, Gronkowski, they got it done.”

Michaels: “If there is anything nefarious, it will be a very complicated legacy.”


Tom Brady: “A lot of mental toughness, we’ve had it all year. We’ve never doubted each other.”

Brady on winning four Super Bowls: “Well, it’s been a long journey – I’ve been at it for 15 years, we’ve had a couple tough losses. This one came down to the end, and this time we made the plays.”

Brady: “I couldn’t believe it. I looked at it and saw it, then I thought, man, we better be ready to go back out onto the field for another drive. Malcolm, what a play, for a rookie to make a play like that in the Super Bowl and win us the game is pretty incredible.”


Malcolm Butler: “I just had a vision that I was going to make a big play. It came true, and I’m just blessed. I can’t explain it right now.”

Butler on what was going through his mind: “I knew they were stacked…it all comes with preparation. I knew they were doing a pick coming under…it was crazy.”


Robert Kraft: “Well, every year, if you’re privileged to get to this game, hard things happen. Your team needs mental toughness. I’m so proud of Brady and Belichick for handling everything the way they did. I love them, and all our Patriots fans should feel very good.”

Kraft on people who question his team’s accomplishments: “Well, we won (the AFC Championship) game 45-7. We won today 28-24. Our people didn’t touch the balls, I love our team. I’m proud of our guys. We are going to carry on, and hopefully do well.”

Kraft (to Dan Patrick on Postgame Championship Stage): “To all of the Patriot fans out there, wherever you are, this is our fourth Super Bowl Championship in the last 14 years. The first one that we won I thought was pretty special, because it happened at a unique time in our country when it meant a lot. I never thought another trophy could feel as special, but this one absolutely does, and every true Patriot fan understands it. I want to thank the great coaching staff, the players, because we are all Patriots, and tonight, once again, the Patriots are World Champions.”


Pete Carroll: “It was a fantastic football game, and a true championship game came right down to those last punches that you take. Well, really what happened down, it’s really frankly and really clear that we went to three receivers, they sent in their goal line people, and we had plenty of downs and time out. We just didn’t want to run against their goal line group right there. We would have subbed and done our stuff for the third and fourth down, but no really clear thought we would have used our time out, taken those shots and called a play, but that’s it.”

“We called a play, it’s a miraculous play the kid made to get in front of that route. It’s a play that really tries to keep him from getting in front. I told those guys, ‘It’s my fault,’ because everyone was like, ‘Why don’t we just run it?’ That’s a real good thought, but we had plenty of time to win the game, and we would have in our minds done it on third or fourth down, and that’s how we were playing for third or fourth down. Give them no time and it would have been just right, but it didn’t work out that way.”

Carroll on the difficult loss: “I can’t even tell you. I can’t even feel it. It’s so hard to feel for all these guys who try so hard, and have done so much to get to this point. Coaches and players, the ‘12s’, they’ve done everything they can possibly do to make us champions again. For it to come down to a play like that, I hate that we have to live with that because we did everything right to win a football game at end. They did a great job, they gave themselves a shot, and pulled it off, and they’re champs and we’re not.”


Collinsworth: “Every once in a while in the NFL, you think you’ve seen it all. I will never get over throwing the ball in that situation.”

Collinsworth on decision to pass on the one-yard line: “I can’t believe the call. I cannot believe the call. You’ve got Marshawn Lynch in the backfield. You’ve got a guy that’s been borderline unstoppable in this part of the field. I can’t believe the call.”

Collinsworth: “I’m sitting here and I absolutely cannot believe that play call. If I lose the Super Bowl because Marshawn Lynch can’t get it in from the one-yard line, so be it. So be it. But there is no way…I don’t believe the call.”

Collinsworth on the fourth quarter fight: “From Seattle’s standpoint – whatever. From New England’s standpoint, you’re 18 seconds away from a Super Bowl championship. You don’t throw a punch under any circumstance here.”

Collinsworth on Jermaine Kearse’s fourth quarter catch: “Crazy. How many different plays are the Patriots going to have like this? Mario Manningham, David Tyree and now (Jermaine) Kearse? And Tom Brady had that look on his face like ‘You’ve got to be kidding me. Not again!’”

Collinsworth: “For Tom Brady, it has been a week of distractions. He has had good moments in this game, and he has made big mistakes.”

Collinsworth: “Now I think everybody, we know what the ramifications of Ted Wells’ investigation will be. Somebody’s going to come out of this with egg on their face, either the Patriots, league office, the people who have accused the Patriots, all that stuff is in play. But isn’t it glorious just for these 3-4 hours that you can just enjoy a football game?”

Michaels: “Well, as the old coach John Madden always said, ‘You know, a game breaks out.’ It broke out tonight.”

Michaels: “For Tom Brady, when (Deflategate) started out, he couldn’t believe what the deal was the day after the Indianapolis game. Then he played a lot of defense the first week, then they get here and he did his interview with Bob on Tuesday…he was all over the place.”

Collinsworth on speaking with Tom Brady about Deflategate: “I said, ‘Tom, look me in the eye and tell me you couldn’t have possibly said anything to a ball boy, assistant coach, somebody in the organization that would lead them to believe that you wanted air let out of that football.’ And he said, ‘Absolutely not.’ He could not have been more emphatic.”

Collinsworth on Richard Sherman’s girlfriend possibly giving birth before the Super Bowl: “Richard (Sherman) was telling us that she said, ‘You go play the Super Bowl, don’t worry about me. I’ve got all that set up, if something gets accelerated here.’ ”

Collinsworth on Russell Wilson: “Even when you think you have him completely under control, you don’t.”

Collinsworth: “Big old Vince Wilfork — run in there at your own risk when he’s going to make a play.”


Collinsworth: “You can’t block this guy. Michael Bennett has taken over the football game…No one has been able to block him all night.”

Michaels on Pete Carroll: “Fired by the Jets, fired by the Patriots, sometimes it’s a little dicey to bring it up, and he said ‘My therapist told me to talk about it.’”

Collinsworth: “Pete Carroll, one of the most competitive guys in all of football. He said ‘When I got fired (in New England), I don’t think they realized what they were losing.”

Collinsworth on Doug Baldwin’s third quarter TD: “Veteran receiver, knows how to use the umpire in the middle of the field to pick off the man coverage. He did it perfectly, brilliant play by Doug Baldwin.”

Collinsworth on the Patriots falling behind in the third quarter: “These two teams have played from behind during the entirety of these playoffs, no big deal.”

Michaels on Marshawn Lynch: “He’s just a runaway truck.”

Collinsworth on Chris Matthews’ fourth catch of the game to put him over 100 yards: “Brandon Browner is one of the biggest, baddest corners I’ve ever seen, and Chris Matthews just threw him off.”

Collinsworth on Chris Matthews: “This is just amazing. He played in the CFL for two years…the offensive coordinator nicknamed him ‘Hardball’, for Chris Matthews of MSNBC, who is here at the game today. (The Seahawks’) Chris Matthews said, ‘I can’t believe, every time I Wikipedia myself, it comes up as the other guy.’ Tomorrow, he might supplant MSNBC’s Chris Matthews in the number one spot.”

Cris Collinsworth: “Bobby Wagner, what a difference when he came in the lineup. (Opponents were scoring) under 10 points a game.”


Collinsworth on the first half: “It is what we thought it might be. Two great coaches, gutsy calls.”

Harbaugh: “Seattle is having major matchup problems on defense. They can’t cover these guys…(Carroll) is saying, ‘We’ve got to get a stop, find a way to stop these crossing routs. We’re going to change our defense a little bit.”

Harrison: “Two years ago, these two teams met and Russell Wilson went at cornerback Kyle Arrington. It looks like he’s trying to stay away from the veteran cornerbacks, and attack the young cornerbacks.”

Harrison: “Seattle’s defense has no answer for Shane Vereen. If I’m Tom Brady, I continue to spread him out and put linebacker Bobby Wagner in open space.”

Dungy: “If I’m Pete Carroll, I’m excited. We’ve been outplayed, but we’re right there. This is Seattle’s type of game. Second half, they’ve got to get things going on defense…(Carroll) is saying on offense, we’re going to continue to run the football.”


Collinsworth on game-tying TD catch by Seattle WR Chris Matthews: “The size differential alone at that moment said, “Maybe Chris Matthews should be the number one guy that we cover here. What a great call by Pete Carroll.”

Collinsworth on Patriots’ strong start: “You’re going to ask me what the storyline of this game is thus far, and it’s the utter domination in man coverage of the Patriots coverage people all over the place. There’s been nowhere to throw this football. There just is nothing there. They’re spying, they’re taking care of Russell Wilson in case he wants to run, and the coverage people down the field are winning.”


Michaels on Brady interception: “Brady under some pressure. That was the 13th play, 58-yard drive, it took seven minutes and 41 seconds, ends with a pick.”

Collinsworth: “Hard to believe that Tom Brady just made that mistake. Under pressure, yes, but really just threw that one up.”

Al on Deflategate: “The national conversation for the last two weeks has dealt with deflating footballs, and an investigation. The Patriots just saying to us, that’s just noise outside, won’t be a distraction.”

Collinsworth: “The words Patriots and distraction just doesn’t seem to go together, does it? You think back to Spygate in 2007, they almost ran the table that season. Earlier this year the sky was falling, and here they are again in the Super Bowl. They have the tendency to rally around each other, and when they do they are even more dangerous. I think they will come out big here today.”