When he was a player, former Buccaneers linebacker Derrick Brooks was known for his preparation and instincts.
Now, that means scouting airports and venues, as the co-chairman for the host committee for Super Bowl LV in Tampa next year.
Via Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times, Brooks talked about the work he did last week in Miami, taking notes on what was happening there that could be implemented for his game.
“When I got there, I was kind of in the same realm as a doing a scouting report as if I were getting ready for an opponent,’’ Brooks said. “I started taking notes on how the airport looked and how it felt. Is it welcoming? I looked at the positioning of volunteers, how they were dressed and the directional signs.
“Did they tell you where to go? They were speaking Spanish and that made me make a note about the need for bilingual volunteers. I took a lot of notes.’’
The Tampa team has a different challenge than most host committees, which generally have five to seven years to prepare. They’re turning a game around in three, as they were the last-minute substitute when the league pushed the Los Angeles Super Bowl back a year because of construction delays there.
Tampa hasn’t hosted a Super Bowl since 2009, and a wave of new construction there will help accommodate an event which has grown since then as well. Figuring out all those details is the key for Brooks and their host committee now.
“The game is still played on a 100-yard field on white lines,’’ Brooks said. “I can’t affect that outcome one way or another anymore. But we can make sure all the details are buttoned up for the two teams playing in it so that we are not being a distraction in terms of our lack of preparation.’’
They can only hope he performs as well in this role as he did in his Super Bowl, as he had an interception return for a touchdown in Super Bowl XXXVII, as the Bucs beat the Raiders.