Head coach? Who cares? Nobody is spared the PA

INDIANAPOLIS — In the crazy world of the NFL Scouting Combine media center, head coaches must share the spotlight with anonymous prospects whom few fans could even identify. The juxtaposition makes for some entertaining situations.

Broncos coach Josh McDaniels was in the middle of dishing some classic coach speak to the assembled media members Saturday afternoon, when it was loudly announced that two unheralded prospects were about to enter the room.

McDaniels, who much like his former boss, Bill Belichick, is a master at being evasive, was completely thrown off his game. He looked up, stopped what he was saying and gave an uncomfortable smile, clearly shaken by the interruption.

A few moments later, McDaniels was once again interrupted by the announcement of another prospect coming out. The coach let loose another wry smile, paused a few seconds to gather his thoughts, then went right into more of his unrevealing answers.

The same thing happened to the Jets’ Rex Ryan earlier in the day, but the bombastic coach responded just a tad differently.

While Ryan answered a question about the Jets’ tough 2010 schedule, Mississippi WR Shay Hodge‘s media availability was announced over the loud speaker.

“… And Shay is at table five, if anybody is interested in that,” Ryan said in mid-sentence, eliciting laughs from reporters, who didn’t budge from the news conference.

The PA announcer butted in again two minutes later, announcing that Louisiana-Lafayette DE Hall Davis also would be at table five. That caused Ryan to once again stop in mid-sentence and jokingly ask, “What table?” More laughs followed.

Jason Feller

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