Biggs: Film work helps Porter become hero
Tracy Porter is going to have to come up with something creative to top the Lombardi Trophy, Superdome and “SB44” that he had shaved into his head for Sunday when next season starts.
Or maybe he won’t feel the need to make a statement with his hair now that the New Orleans Saints are world champions, a victory cemented when he picked off Peyton Manning and returned an interception 74 yards for a touchdown in the closing minutes of the 31-17 victory at Sun Life Stadium in Miami.
It was the second huge interception in as many games for Porter, who picked off Minnesota’s Brett Favre in the NFC Championship Game to force overtime. It looked like the Vikings were in position for a game-winning field goal.
It looked like the Colts were on their way for a game-tying score before Porter struck. Indianapolis was facing third-and-five from the Saints’ 31-yard line. When wide receiver Austin Collie came in motion, Porter deducted that Peyton Manning was going to throw to Reggie Wayne on a quick slant, a play the Colts had used earlier in the game.
“We knew that Collie was a guy that they usually put at No. 1," Porter said. "Once he motioned down, we knew (Wayne) was going to run to the sticks. I saw him do that. I jumped the route, and the ball came to me.
"I'd seen it over and over -- third down," Porter said. "That was a big route for them to convert on. Through the numerous amounts of film study that we've done all week in preparing for the Super Bowl, and it all happened just like I was watching it on film. I made the break on it, and here comes the end zone."
The Saints, who were not successful getting the “remember me” shots on Manning they had talked about, did get good pressure on the play, which unquestionably was a key to the interception as Porter jumped the route.
"We ran it earlier in the game," Wayne said. "Tracy did a good job of recognizing it and made a good play."
Porter revealed afterward that he almost missed the team bus to the stadium for the game because of his last-minute haircut.
"The Superdome is the road to the Lombardi Trophy" Porter said, explaining the do. "And now you can look at the Lombardi Trophy and the same road back to the Superdome."
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