Coaches don’t leave anything to chance for games with this much riding on them. That’s why the Patriots are practicing with the music blasting inside the Indiana Farm Bureau Center in an effort to simulate the role noise would play on Sunday at Lucas Oil Stadium.
From Wednesday’s Super Bowl practice report, prepared by pool reporter Alex Marvez:
“We can make it loud enough so that [the players] can’t hear,” said (Bill) Belichick, whose team has not played inside a dome this season. “As long as they can’t hear, you have to do silent communications whether it’s on defense with hand signals or offense with tapping the center [for the snap] and all that.”
Among the selections played were songs from Jon Bon Jovi — a personal friend of Belichick’s who attended New England’s second-round playoff win over Denver — and Super Bowl XLVI halftime performer Madonna. Belichick said he and Patriots Director of Football/Head Coach Administration Berj Najarian choose the songs but added with a smile, “I get veto power.”
This obviously isn’t a completely new practice, but it’s kind of strange in this instance. Although, as Marvez notes, the Pats have yet to play inside a dome this year, crowd noise isn’t often much of a factor in Super Bowls, where the neutral site usually means that about half of the crowd will be quiet for your offense.
And plus, it’s more of a corporate audience at these games.
Still, it can’t hurt to cover all your bases. Although I’m not sure that “going down in a blaze of glory” is something you want to drill into players’ heads too aggressively.
Or is it? Honestly, I’m not quite sure if that’s a good thing or a bad thing.
UPDATE: In other sort of interesting practice news, Belichick also had his guys take a 31-minute break midway through Wednesday’s session in an attempt to simulate the length of Super Bowl halftime. The guy accounts for everything.