(USA Today Sports Images)The Buccaneers beat the heck out of the Raiders in Super Bowl XXXVII. It's not surprising that the Tampa Bay players reacted strongly when former Oakland receiver Tim Brown oddly suggested the game was rigged by his scheming head coach.
Warren Sapp, a defensive tackle and one of the stars of that Buccaneers team, brought some common sense to Brown's insane notion that coach Bill Callahan might have sabotaged the Super Bowl.
"You're telling me (Callahan) threw it, Super Bowl, everything on the line?" Sapp told the Tampa Tribune. "That's like being at 25,000 on Mount Everest, and you only got 4,000 feet left, crisp, clear, top of the mountain in sight, and you just go, 'Nah, I think I'll just lay here a while.'"
And with that out of the way, the Buccaneers decided it was a good time to remind the world how badly they did beat the Raiders that day, in interviews with the Tampa Tribune.
Linebacker Derrick Brooks texted some of his teammates after Brown's comments (and after Jerry Rice supported them, a strange subplot to this tale), and shared Keyshawn Johnson's response with the Tribune.
"We killed them," Johnson said to Brooks, according to the paper. "We kicked their (butts). You did your job, I did my job, we all did, and we beat them all day and night and let's just leave it at that."
Brooks had his own thoughts too.
"Obviously, Tim and Jerry, they had problems with Bill," Brooks said, according to the Tribune. "And our game kind of got tied in with that. I don't know what their problems were, but the tape of that game speaks for itself — loudly.
"To think you would automatically beat us with a few more rushing attempts, that I'm not buying. A few more rushing attempts with Charlie (Garner) and Tyrone (Wheatley) — really?"
Sapp, one of the best defensive tackles that has ever played the game, didn't take kindly to the thought that the way to beat the Buccaneers was to run at the line - which is what Brown said the original game plan was before Callahan changed it at the last minute.
"Who was going to move me?" Sapp said. "Who in the hell was going to move me?"
The Buccaneers have a right to be upset. Brown comes off as a sore loser, not to mention someone who is carrying a grudge for a long time against his former coach and seems to be shirking responsibility for catching just one pass for 9 yards in the game. The Buccaneers had one of the most dominating performances in Super Bowl history on that Sunday 10 years ago. Suggesting there was anything else at play is disrespectful to them.