Patriots assistant coach, Seahawks kicker, represent Boston area in Super Bowl
In case you hadn’t heard amidst clamor of inflation of footballs, there’s a football being played on Sunday.
Super Bowl XLIX kicks off Sunday night in Arizona at 6:30, with the New England Patriots and Seattle Seahawks playing for NFL supremacy. Seattle looks to defend their Super Bowl title, while the Patriots look to remain the last NFL team to successfully defend a championship, when they went back-to-back in 2003-04.
With the two teams comes local representation, aside from the Patriots being based in Foxboro, of course. Seahawks kicker Steven Hauschka and Patriots offensive line coach Dave DeGuglielmo hail from the Greater Boston area, the latter of the two being a graduate of Boston University.
Hauschka, who has been Seattle’s kicker since 2011, was born and raised in Needham. The 29-year-old has been embraced by the town, which also boasts Aly Raisman, who competed for the US Gymnastics team in the 2012 Summer Olympics. Inside the lobby of Needham town hall is a mini-shrine for the kicker. The display includes a large poster of Hauschka in addition to signed memorabilia.
Jason Botelho, who lives in Needham, is happy to see another Needham kid on the big stage.
“It’s really cool,” said Botelho, who grew up in Dartmouth but moved to the town six years ago. “They had him on the news, they did a story about him with his family and some friends. So it’s nice to see some local kids doing well.”
But like many in Needham, which is about a half-hour drive from the Patriots headquarters in Foxboro, Botelho is a Patriots fan. So while he’s happy for the hometown hero, he’s not necessarily rooting for him to win.
“I’d like to see him do very well and be successful in kicking but he doesn’t need to win another Super Bowl,” said Botelho. “He just won one last year.”
Folks in Lexington, the hometown of DeGuglielmo, don’t have to worry about the conflict of interests. DeGuglielmo is in his first season as the Patriots offensive line coach, his job to prepare they guys who protect quarterback Tom Brady.
DeGuglielmo grew up in Lexington, playing football for legendary head coach Bill Tighe before playing football the BU program that was discontinued in 1997, from 1986-90. However, he didn’t seem as widely known in Lexington as Hauschka is in Needham. But like they say, the best offensive linemen are the ones nobody knows about. So it could just be that the 46-year-old coach is good at his job.
“By all means I’m in full support of [DeGuglielmo],” said David Kim of Lexington, who wasn’t aware DeGuglielmo was from the town. “I don’t follow football that much, but to hear that someone from this town is participating in such a grand event is really amazing.”
Jana Jlojowske was in Lexington from Montreal to watch the big game with friends. She wasn’t aware of DeGuglielmo being from the town, either, but has more of a rooting interest in the Patriots upon hearing about it.
“I didn’t even know about [DeGuglielmo being from Lexington],” said Jlojowske. “But, yeah certainly.”
The game is expected to be one of the best Super Bowls in recent memory, with the two teams considered for much of the year to be the best two teams in the NFL. Regardless of the outcome, one of the two men will be coming home to the Boston area a champion.