“Me and [Chris] Cooley was just playing Pack Wars,” Portis said, “and I won these two cards off of him. So I figured I fall somewhere in between these two guys. And if I don’t, these are the two guys I’m shooting to fall between, so … I think it’s pretty nice company.”
(I’m told that more on this epic pack wars contest will show up on Cooley’s blog in the not-too-distant future.)
First-time Pro Bowler Mike Sellers came down the steps behind Portis and said, “They all had good fullbacks, too.”
Portis initially tried to ignore Sellers and finish the joke he had set up, but had to interrupt himself. “And the reason I fall in betw—Barry Sanders didn’t even have a fullback!”
“Well, he was his own fullback,” Sellers said, walking away.
“The reason I fall between these two guys?” Portis said, resuming his joke. “Because he’s number 20, he’s number 29, and I’m number 26.”
Someone asked what he thought about Sellers’ Pro Bowl nod, and Portis laughed. “They needed an extra lineman, so they chose him.”
Sellers, not quite out of earshot, shouted back, “Hey, where’s the love, man? Goll-lee!”
Portis resumed, more seriously, “You know he deserves it…. You know, you’re talking about a guy who comes to work every day, banged up, anything, he never misses practice, gonna give it all he got…. He deserves it.”
Then he stopped being serious for a bit (I hope). “I can see Mike on the beach. You know, he’s always up on these little underwear in the locker room, and, as big as he is, he and Jason Campbell got the smallest underwear you can find…. So I can see Mike, 280 [pounds], just streaking down the beach with a little bikini on, playing Frisbee or something with the locals. I’m sure he’ll have a blast.”
Later on, the questioning turned to Coach Zorn’s much-repeated assertion that he feels like the “worst coach in America,” and Portis was bluntly supportive of his head coach.
“I mean, basically we’re a team,” he said. “It’s not Coach Zorn. It’s not one single person you can point out to take the blame for what happened. I think we win as a team, we lose as a team.”
Portis even had an optimistic answer on the approach to this week’s game. “It’s really building the foundation. Let this be our foundation. Make sure we’ve got a solid foundation, don’t let things crack, don’t let things slip away, and come back, get our mind right, we’ve got a game to play this weekend.”
And on that memorable quote from Zorn? “I mean, you know, I think that’s just how he felt at the time. He know he’s not the worst coach in America, so… he had a fresh opportunity and I think he felt like he let something slip away. I think in Coach Zorn’s mind, he knows he is far from the worst coach in America, and … it’s this time. Right now we’re losing, so everybody feels that way.”