Brett Favre will speak to Eagles players during a team meeting Saturday morning, according to Eagles coach Doug Pederson, who spent eight NFL seasons as Favre’s backup in Green Bay.
“He and I still stay in touch. We’re great friends,” Pederson said. “He’s going to stop by the hotel and visit with the guys for a few minutes Saturday morning.”
Favre, a Hall of Fame quarterback, Super Bowl winner and three-time NFL MVP, has made headlines recently for his role as producer of a concussion documentary. Favre, who says he’s suffered memory loss after his playing career, has said he’d prefer his grandkids play golf instead of football.
The Eagles will hear Favre’s thoughts ahead of Sunday’s Super Bowl against the Patriots at U.S. Bank Stadium. Favre’s illustrious career ended with the Vikings in 2010 after suffering a concussion at TCF Bank Stadium.
“He’s been there. He’s won the big games,” Eagles quarterback Nick Foles said. “Anytime you have the opportunity to listen to someone like him speak, it’s huge. So I can’t wait to listen to what wisdom and knowledge he gives us.”
Kraft: Brady can pick time to go
In a sit-down with NFL Media’s Andrea Kraemer that aired Wednesday morning, Patriots owner Robert Kraft said quarterback Tom Brady has “earned the right” to decide when exactly he wants to retire.
Brady said he’s not thinking about retirement when asked about Kraft’s remarks during Wednesday’s Super Bowl media sessions.
“Why does everyone want me to retire so bad?” Brady asked. “I’m having fun. The team is doing good. I know I’m a little older than most of the guys, but I’m enjoying it.”
Brady, who turns 41 in August, will play in his eighth Super Bowl to end his 18th NFL season.
“I’ve always wanted to play to my mid-40s, we’ll see,” Brady said. “Football is such a physical sport, every game could be your last game.”
An unheralded threat
Much attention has been paid to Patriots star skill players such as tight end Rob Gronkowski and receiver Danny Amendola, but Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz is wary of New England’s flexible runners out of the backfield.
Dion Lewis, James White and Rex Burkhead serve versatile roles that will test the Eagles’ No. 1-ranked run defense that allowed just 79.2 rushing yards per game during the regular season. The trio accounted for 897 receiving yards and nine touchdown catches, too.
“The matchups will be every bit as key with those running backs,” Schwartz said. “Not just in the run game, but the pass game. They use those guys as wide receivers.”
Pederson praises Bears’ Nagy
Matt Nagy, the Chicago Bears’ new coach, worked under Pederson for three seasons as Kansas City’s quarterbacks coach and took over for Pederson as the Chiefs offensive coordinator.
Now that Nagy is in the NFC North, Pederson said he expects Nagy to “do extremely well” with the Bears and quarterback Mitchell Trubisky.
“He’s another one that really gets the player,” Pederson said. “He understands the player, listens to the player. … He’s a smart coach.”
Gronkowski still in protocol
Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski was limited in Wednesday’s practice and still is in concussion protocol, according to coach Bill Belichick, adding that Gronkowski shed his red noncontact jersey for a regular uniform.
Moment of levity
Belichick, the ever-frowning figure, cracked a slightest of jokes during his third news conference of Super Bowl week on Wednesday. A reporter, identifying himself from Germany, dared to ask about the game plan for defending Eagles tight end Zach Ertz.
Belichick went the typical route of concealing his plans, then shut down the question with a “next.” He then added a brief quip.
“That’s the first question I’ve been asked by a German reporter that wasn’t about Sebastian Vollmer,” Belichick said, referring to the former Patriots offensive tackle.