INDIANAPOLIS | It would be one hour before the first Patriot stepped onto Lucas Oil Stadium turf, yet rows of cameras already had lined the podium where Tom Brady was scheduled to speak at Super Bowl Media Day.
When Brady did take his seat, he spent as much time answering questions about his days playing the field as his skill quarterbacking on it.
Wes Welker answered questions about his interest in the TV show "Dancing with the Stars," and Rob Gronkowski named the members of the Kardashian family, all at the requests of an estimated 2,000 reporters covering Super Bowl Media Day on Tuesday. The annual event, often likened to a three-ring circus, featured broadcast and print reporters from across the globe, including some — chef Aaron Sanchez and singer Ciara — who aren't exactly journalists by trade.
Giants punter Steve Weatherford, who was born in Crown Point and went to high school in Terre Haute, snapped photos of the scene as he stepped out of the locker room.
"It looks beautiful," he said of the city's preparation for Sunday's Super Bowl XLVI. "Indianapolis has done a great job. Every guy on the team I've spoken to says this is the nicest big city they've ever been to."
At one point Weatherford grabbed a microphone to interview a teammate, and later jumped into the stands to pose for photos and sign autographs. A man dressed in a super hero costume asked athletes to name their super powers, and another wearing a Hawaiian shirt passed out boxes of macadamia nuts from the island state.
Britt Davis, a wide receiver on the Patriots' practice squad, turned the tables on a radio shock jock and asked the broadcaster a few personal questions.
He said it was all part of the Super Bowl experience, one that came after working for three teams in three seasons.
"It's been a crazy ride," Davis said, "but I look at this situation, and now I'm at the Super Bowl with a great team and a great organization."
It wasn't all pop culture trivia.
Weatherford spoke candidly about his efforts to donate football cleats to kids in his hometown. Patriot Deion Branch emphasized his religious faith and how it is steadying him this week. Patriots owner Robert Kraft teared up when speaking about the death of his wife, Myra, and how the team has supported him through it.
On the football front, Eli Manning answered question after question about his brother, Colts quarterback Peyton Manning.
And, eventually, the conversation turned back to Sunday's game.
"At the end of the day, it's just all about coming out here and getting the win," said Giants defensive end Justin Tuck, a Notre Dame graduate. "That's what we're focused on."