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Belichick, Carroll offer some laughs before showdown

Rather than the traditional press conferences with the coaches, Friday of Super Bowl week offers a slightly different perspective in a joint setting.

Check out photos from Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick and Seahawks Head Coach Pete Carroll's joint press conference at the Phoenix Convention Center on Friday, January 30, 2015.

PHOENIX - One of the more entertaining developments of Super Bowl week regarding press availability has been the practice of holding the Friday session with the coaches in joint fashion.Bill Belichick and Pete Carroll sat on a stage at Phoenix Convention Center, and engaged in an entertaining press conference where each expressed admiration for each other and excitement for the game.

"We've had a great week down here," Belichick said. "Our hotel, the Cardinals facility, everything's been great. We've gotten a lot done. Certainly it's a huge challenge to prepare for the Seattle Seahawks. They're a great football organization, they have a great team, they're strong in every area. I think everyone knows the respect I have for Seattle and Pete and the job they do.

"I don't know if 'fun' is a word I would use; it's been a huge challenge and it's a tough team to prepare for, but I certainly have all the respect in the world for them. I can see why they were the champions last year, why they're here this year. They do so many things well, on so many levels, and we're going to have to try to match that performance on Sunday. That said, our team's excited, they've worked very hard to get to this point, and we're excited for the opportunity and I think it will be a great matchup."

Carroll expressed similar enthusiasm in his trademark style.

"We've had a great two weeks, and it's been nothing but fun," Carroll said. "The opportunity that presents itself of playing in this game is so special and so unique, and everybody's tuned in. We're grateful for being here, thrilled to have the matchup that we have, with a great organization, in Bill and the way they do things and they've done so well for so long. It presents just as high-class a matchup as we could expect. 

"Everybody's in good shape for us. We're ready to go. We're fortunate we made it through without anybody getting nicked, and we're about as healthy as we could be this time of year. It's really getting close, we can feel it, and we're ready for game time."

With the introductions out of the way the format allowed both coaches to showcase some personality rather than the normal staid reactions from typical press conference settings. Carroll appeared more comfortable and offered a few quips along the way, most notably when he finished a question regarding the potential availability ofRichard Sherman, whose girlfriend is awaiting the birth of their first child, by saying he "can't wait to see little Petey."

But Belichick offered smiles throughout and injected some humor of his own. At one point Carroll repeated a phrase from Belichick when the Patriots coach discussed the price his owner, Robert Kraft, paid to acquire his services in 2000. After Carroll rhetorically asked Belichick about the first-round pick from the Jets, he added that he'd always been "a free agent," drawing some laughs.

Belichick jumped right in by noting that he, too, "was a free agent after Cleveland."

Belichick was asked about his philosophy of "do your job" and he explained how important the principle is to the team's success.

"I think in terms of our players and our team, each of us has a job to do, and the only thing we can do is do the best that we can, that's improve on a daily basis, work hard, pay attention to the little details and put the team first," Belichick said. "Whether it's myself, a player, an assistant coach, doesn't really matter who it is, we all can only do what we can do, we try to do that in a team context, and we try to work as hard at it as we can and improve on a daily basis.

"We all make mistakes, we all have weaknesses, but I think we can try to address those and improve them and possibly make them strengths. I'd say that's the backbone of our program. Each one of us does that on a regular basis, and cumulatively we can improve as a football team and an organization. That's really what it's about."

Both coaches talked about the presence of their families in Arizona, and Belichick added that his 94-year-old mother Jeannette would be back home in Annapolis "yelling at the TV."

It was an enjoyable 30 minutes with the coaches that offered a slightly different perspective than the one we've seen throughout the week.

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