“I felt like I was in a movie. It’s what you dream about as a kid.” – James White on scoring game-winning touchdown in Super Bowl LI
Special Edition of Football Night Begins Tonight at 7:30 p.m. ET on NBC; Patriots Host Chiefs in NFL Kickoff 2017 Season Opener on NBC
Coverage Includes Mike Tirico Interview with Chiefs TE Travis Kelce, Halftime Interview with Tony Dungy and Cowboys QB Dak Prescott
STAMFORD, Conn. – September 7, 2017 – For tonight’s special edition of Football Night In America, which airs at 7:30 p.m. ET on NBC prior to NFL Kickoff 2017, Rodney Harrison interviews New England Patriots RB James White, who scored the game-winning touchdown in overtime of Super Bowl LI. Football Night will preview tonight’s 2017 NFL season-opener on NBC, featuring the defending Super Bowl champion Patriots and the Kansas City Chiefs in Foxborough, Mass.
The program will also include an interview with Mike Tirico and Chiefs TE Travis Kelce, as well as a feature on Patriots head coach Bill Belicheck returning to his high school, Annapolis High, for a surprise visit. Halftime coverage will feature an interview between Tony Dungy and Cowboys QB Dak Prescott ahead of Giants-Cowboys on Sunday Night Football.
Tirico and Dan Patrick will host FNIA on-site, alongside Hall of Fame head coach Tony Dungy, two-time Super Bowl champion Rodney Harrison, and Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk.com and PFT Live on NBCSN/NBC Sports Radio.
Al Michaels (play-by-play), Cris Collinsworth (analyst), and Michele Tafoya (sideline reporter) will call tonight’s NFL Kickoff 2017 season opener featuring the Chiefs and Patriots.
INTERVIEW: Below are excerpts from Harrison’s interview with White. If used, please note the mandatory credit: “In an exclusive interview airing tonight on Football Night in America.”
JAMES WHITE WITH RODNEY HARRISON
White on Patriots’ mindset in Super Bowl LI when trailing 28-3: “We weren’t discouraged. Tom (Brady), Julian (Edelman), all of our leaders kept us motivated, no matter what the score was. When you have ‘12’ back there, you always have a chance. (Dont’a) Hightower made that strip sack, and I think that’s really what gave everybody that extra boost of confidence.”
Harrison: “The one play that you made that I thought was the key to your victory was in the fourth quarter, 3rd & 10 – the nickel back blitzed, and you were standing here. Take me through that.”
White: “I kind of saw the blitz a little late. I was just trying to finish the block off and allow Tom enough time to get the ball off. It was a great play by him and (Chris) Hogan (resulting in a reception for a first down).”
Harrison: “You pushed him at the last minute, because Tom was winding up. To me, that was the key play of the game.”
White: “Definitely, because if we don’t convert that, I don’t know if we win that game.”
White on scoring the game-winning touchdown in overtime of Super Bowl LI: “It was a toss play. When they called it, I felt like everything went in slow motion. I had to run through one guy, keep my feet moving, and just found a way in there. I felt like I was in a movie. It’s what you dream about as a kid, having the ball in your hands to win a championship.”
Harrison: “Fourteen catches, three touchdowns, a two-point conversion – don’t you think you should have been Super Bowl MVP?”
White: “It’s not really my choice. It’s definitely a really special moment in my life, something I’ll never forget, a special moment with my teammates. You can’t really put that into words.”
White on filling the void left by the injury to WR Julian Edelman: “It’s not just going to be one guy (filling the void), but I’m definitely willing to step up a little bit more. Whatever the coach asks me to do, I want to go out there and do that. Whatever Coach McDaniels dials up, I’m going to be ready to do it. I just have to go out there and execute in practice for him to call it in the game.”
–FOOTBALL NIGHT IN AMERICA–