FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- With all the talk about deflated footballs, an exchange on the CBS broadcast of the New England Patriots' road game against the Green Bay Packers on Nov. 30 seems timely to pass along.
Early in the third quarter, Jim Nantz and Phil Simms had the following discussion on the broadcast:
Nantz: We talked to [Aaron] Rodgers about 'How do you like your footballs?' Because, you know, you can rub them up before the game. [Phil], you really kind of created that for everybody else in the league.
Simms: I don’t know if I did, because the quarterbacks got tired of them complaining. But he said something [that] was unique: 'I like to push the limit to how much air we can put in the football, even go over what they allow you to do and see if the officials take air out of it.' Because he thinks it’s easier for him to grip. He likes them tight. Of course, he’s got very big hands and you can tell that by watching him play.
Nantz: You’ve never heard of a guy really desiring a football to be fat and overinflated before, have you?
Simms: Everybody wants it smaller and soft, so they can dig their fingers into. He’s such a feel thrower. You can tell. The one touchdown he threw down the field to the tight end is such feel; then he flicks it. That shows you he just has great control of it, with his fingers and hand.
Nantz: He said, 'God gave me big hands and a strong grip.'
Simms: You know, the officials do check those footballs and sometimes maybe even get lucky and put an extra half pound of air in there to help Aaron Rodgers out.