De­fen­sive duo try to repeat

Phillips coached Talib to Su­per Bowl win

Antelope Valley Press (Sunday) - - Sports - By BRIAN GOLDEN Val­ley Press Staff Writer

THOU­SAND OAKS — Wade Phillips was asked how the Su­per Bowl has changed in the 29 years since the Rams de­fen­sive co­or­di­na­tor’s first ap­pear­ance in the ul­ti­mate game.

“Well, we didn’t wear leather hel­mets, if that’s what you mean,” the 71-year-old coach said. “But we did have to play Joe Mon­tana and Jerry Rice.”

Mon­tana’s San Fran­cisco 49ers beat Phillips’ Den­ver Bron­cos, 55-10 in New Or­leans.

Mon­tana tied Terry Brad­shaw with his fourth Su­per Bowl quarterbac­k vic­tory.

The Rams de­part Sun­day for At­lanta and Su­per Bowl LIII a week from to­day, when New Eng­land Pa­tri­ots quarterbac­k Tom Brady will seek his record sixth Su­per Bowl vic­tory.

There’s an­other echo of his­tory Phillips feels even bet­ter about.

He’s go­ing into the Su­per Bowl for a se­cond straight time with Aqib Talib as one of his start­ing cor­ner­backs.

Talib starred for Phillips on a Den­ver Bron­cos that shut down Brady in the AFC Cham­pi­onship Game, and then throt­tled NFL most valu­able player Cam New­ton in Su­per Bowl 50.

“Aqib got me my (Su­per Bowl) ring, which I’ll al­ways be grate­ful to him for,” Phillips was say­ing the other day af­ter the Rams re­turned to the prac­tice field for Su­per Bowl LIII. “As a coach, you al­ways have play­ers you’re very fond of.

“But in Aqib’s case, I trea­sure him as a friend, not just a foot­ball player.”

The Rams’ shut­down cor­ner­back also knows head coach Sean Mcvay from his past.

Mcvay be­gan his coach­ing

New Or­leans Saints’ Michael Thomas tries to get away from Rams’ Aqib Talib dur­ing the first half the NFL foot­ball NFC cham­pi­onship game Jan. 20.

As­so­ci­ated Press

se­cond ring? —

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