New England Patriots linebacker Junior Seau addresses the media during his postgame press conference at Gillette Stadium on January 20, 2008.
JS: To start, to fill in the question that was mentioned earlier, about [Kevin] Faulk not being a headliner; he is a headliner. He is a headliner. And the third downs in which he played were one of the reasons why we're here today. So I heard that question and I just wanted to make sure that we understand that everybody has a role, and if there's a role for a player to play one down, and it's third, that's a "money" down. Trust me. He's special.
Q:Why was this win so emotional for you, Junior?
JS: Every game's emotional, every game's emotional. You know, to talk about the history of myself and San Diego Chargers, I am always a Charger. That's my home. You know, I took the scenic route to get here. I took the scenic route. But we played and experienced it together. That's how I look at it. Emotional? I'm always emotional. I can't get up higher for one game over the other. It's not going to work that way. It never will.
Q:How special was it in the very first play of the game, you're making the tackle, you have a sack later on and now 13 years back in the Super Bowl?
JS: We're going out there and performing. We have a lot of great guys, a lot of great players in front of me. If you look at the depth chart, [the defensive line], they are like policy, an insurance policy. I feel like a running back back there, I'm able to do the things we are able to do because of them. I credit a lot of that to them. To go to the Super Bowl, obviously the first Super Bowl we went to, it didn't pan out the way we wanted it to. We'll work on the Super Bowl, but for right now, right now, we're going to embrace this time, this moment.
Q:Could you describe your stop on the third and short, did you go off when the guy pulled?
JS: It was a combination of a lot of things. Obviously the D linemen did a great job of taking up the two guys. The call that was made was basically a call that could shoot the gap. I don't know if he called it because he knew I was going to shoot it anyway or he called it because he felt something, but it was a great call. I just ran it through the hole and Mike [Vrabel] was there and I wrapped him up. It was a combination of a lot of things that happened.
Q:What does it mean for you to share this moment with Rodney Harrison?
JS: It's special, it really-- Rodney Harrison is one of the better safeties that has ever played this game. We have shared a lot of years in San Diego and to have the latter part of our careers meet across the country, and to be able to be part of this special moment with a great coach here in New England is special, it really is.
Q:Tedy Bruschi had said earlier in the year during all the blowouts that sooner or later it is not going to be that easy; did you expect that at some point?
JS: It's hard to play in the playoffs. Everyone, the game is up in the air. We don't take anything for granted. You know, we never will. And that stems from the head coach, the Kraft family and the coaches that they have here. It's one day at a time; we grind. We try to position ourselves every day to position ourselves for game day to give ourselves a chance, and it's been working.
Q:What did you think when you did not see Ladanian Tomlinson come back?
JS: We obviously knew going in he was a little dinged up. Mike [Turner] and [Darren] Sproles, those guys are dangerous running backs, as well. So we prepared for all three of them. You know, obviously LT is the best running back in the league, and not to have him in there was definitely a positive thing for us.
Q:How is this day different from that day in Pittsburgh in 1994?
JS: Well, we don't have yellow flags flying all over the place. We don't have the Super Bowl Shuffle being taped prior to the game. Going in there and really not finishing what we set out to do, which is to win the AFC Championship is definitely special but in terms of difference, it was basically we are now looking forward to the next opponent. As you can see, we are not having a parade. We don't have the confetti in the locker room. We are not jumping around. Everyone's gone. Everyone went home. Special. Special.
Q:Did you think it would take this long to get back?
JS: I didn't have a time frame. No one ever does. You know, coming here to New England with the Kraft family and the Belichick family, all anyone wants, I don't care if you're a rookie to an 18 year vet, I don't care if you're a third grader; all we ever want in life is a chance, just a chance. Does that mean a chance to win the Super Bowl? No; a chance to win. And when you win often, it leads into greater things. And you learn that during the course of life. It's just give an old man a chance. (Laughter).
Q:When you came here last year, did you think that was it for you?
JS: I was surfing. I was surfing.
Q:Was it having a chance?
JS: Belichick called me and he said to me it wasn't an assistant coach, it wasn't anyone in the PR department. Belichick called and he said, "I've got a position for you." He didn't say, "Would you like to come and play?" He said, "I have a position for you." That's the world champion coach calling a guy that had just gotten in surfing. I'm going to answer that call. I'm going to answer that call.
Q:That's the proverbial offer you couldn't refuse?
JS: I knew that there was a chance for me to do something for him. For him to even do that, for the Kraft family, for them to even embrace me, I'm going to give you all of me.
Q:Where were you surfing?
JS: Right in front of the house. You want that, too? No, I can't give you that.
Q:Being involved in the game for so long, as a student of the game, put it into perspective, the first Super Bowl in more than a generation to go to the Super Bowl undefeated.
JS: The only thing you can say is it's special. Number one, a lot of hard work. To stay humble, to be able to be hungry, to be able to persevere during those close games that we've had along the journey, we now have one more game, one more game to be part of that forever. That's special. That's special. You cannot refute, if we happen to go in there and do what we need to do, separating is key in history, we have a chance. And that's all we ever need. All we know is that, you know, we work every day, position ourselves to have a chance on game day, a chance, and we do. We have that chance now.
Q:Can you talk about who you want to play?
JS: We have a chance. (Laughter) We have a chance.
Q:Does that mean it doesn't matter?
JS: We have a chance.
Q:This is one of the older defenses in the NFL; do you see that as a strength?
JS: You know, we can say that it's a strength. But at the same time, what you have to do is you've got to work hard. You've got to persevere and you've got to pray a lot. Because it could easily have turned against us. You know, it's too easy to just kind of sit here and say, you know what, it's a strength. But I can't answer that. But we're here now and we have an older crew, a wise crew, but a crew that cares.
There is a difference between caring, and just wanting to play the game. There is. There's a difference between want and need. A want person let me tell you about the want person. Now I've been around the league a lot, a long time. The want person will justify why he didn't get it done. The need person, there is no choice. And it takes years to understand the two. It takes years to understand the two. Just on top of everything, I'd like to congratulate the City of San Diego and the San Diego Chargers for what they have been able to do. The last game against Indianapolis was just a blessing to see them grind it out and get to where they are.