Tim Brown questions if 2003 Super Bowl was sabotaged
Posted by: Chris Vannini on January 22, 2013
Tim Brown is retired and never won a Super Bowl, but he's back in the news leading up to this year's Super Bowl.
Over the weekend, the former Oakland Raiders wide receiver insinuated that head coach Bill Callahan may have "sabotaged" the Super Bowl against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers a decade ago in an interview on SiriusXM NFL Radio.
Brown said the Raiders coach changed the offensive game plan the Friday before the Super Bowl, moving from a run-heavy attack to a pass-heavy attack. Brown said this upset center Barrett Robbins, who disappeared the day before the game and was later diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Brown spoke with ESPN Radio in Dallas on Tuesday and reiterated his opinion, questioning why the game plan was changed.
"I'm saying the facts are the facts. And that facts are that the Friday before the Super Bowl, the game plan was changed," Brown said. "Can you call that sabotage? Some people can, but that's not something I'm going to say, because you don't know what the intentions of the man were. I know that happened, and I know Barrett had a very difficult time with that because he's the one who has to make all the calls.
"For him to try and get ready to play the No. 1 defense in the league at that time, probably the quickest defense in the history of the game at that time was impossible. I think, from that standpoint, what happened happened.
"I'm not saying one thing had to do with the other (with Robbins' disappearance). I'm just stating the facts of what happened the Friday before the Super Bowl."
Brown said he's been saying this for years, but doesn't want to attack Callahan. He brought this up because people had said some bad things about Robbins. Brown called Callahan the smartest offensive mind he'd ever been around, but believed Callahan didn't like the Raiders and that his friendship with Bucs head coach Jon Gruden might have been a factor.
Brown said he has no proof, saying it's his opinion based on what happened.
Brown tweeted Tuesday morning that teammates would back him up and he didn't want to hurt Callahan.
One player isn't backing Brown up: linebacker Bill Romanowski, who spoke to FM 97.5 in Philadelphia.
"I heard that news. I'm absolutely flabbergasted," Romanowski said. "Is he trying to be relevant for the Super Bowl? What is he trying to do? He absolutely couldn't be further from the truth. So you're saying that a man has a chance to cement himself in history with winning a Super Bowl and he wants to hand it over to his buddy? Give me a break, OK? It couldn't be further from the truth. He doesn't know what he's talking about. And I'll tell you what, I'm blown away that something like that would come out of an intelligent man's mouth."
Chris Vannini is the lead writer for CoachingSearch.com and has covered Michigan State sports for The State News, The Oakland Press and MLive.com. He writes a weekly column for the Detroit Free Press on behalf of SB Nation. Vannini lives in Big Ten country, so his foot speed is far from SEC caliber, but his pulse on coaches is hard to match. Be sure to follow @CoachingBuzz on twitter and send your feedback to email@example.com