Giants safety Antrel Rolle enjoys Indy nightlife in advance of Super Bowl

Martin Rogers
Yahoo! Sports

INDIANAPOLIS – New York Giants safety Antrel Rolle defended his decision to attend a Super Bowl party on Thursday night, just three days ahead of Sunday's showdown against the New England Patriots.

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Rolle surprised many revelers by showing up at the EA Sports Madden Bowl at the Bud Light Hotel, but claimed that an evening of entertainment would actually help his performance in the biggest game of the season.

"I like to party and boogie down," Rolle told Yahoo! Sports. "I just want to get the feel of it a little bit."

Giants head coach Tom Coughlin imposed a 9 p.m. curfew on his players ahead of their victory at the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC championship game. However, he has relaxed the rules in Indianapolis, permitting his squad to stay out until midnight.

Rolle joined several other NFL stars and a handful of celebrities on the red carpet, but left the event well before the clock struck 12. He played video games alongside fellow NFLers Drew Brees, Tim Tebow and Arian Foster, yet drank only soft drink or water and refrained from any serious dancing.

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Rolle, who will try to combat Tom Brady's passing attack Sunday, insisted the chance to get out of the oppressive environment of the team hotel would benefit his game.

"You can't overwhelm yourself," he said. "This is a game, one that I have been playing since I was 6 years old so I know the ins and outs and how to handle myself and how to prepare at this level. I am keeping it low-key, I have to save all my energy for Sunday. But I will be observing."

Through the years, Super Bowl coaches have adopted different approaches in monitoring their players' nocturnal habits and there is no widely accepted policy.

However, former defensive tackle Warren Sapp claimed that the occasional night on the town ahead of a big game could be beneficial – and was used to good effect when his Tampa Bay Buccaneers lifted the Lombardi Trophy in the 2002 season.

"Listen man, it is very simple," Sapp said. "Thursday night was my night out. If I was in the Super Bowl or not it would be D-line night out. So I don't care nothing about that. Keep it as regular as what you can. If you go out on Friday night, go out on Friday night.

"I would take my D-line out and we would go out and eat and party – we did all the work. We would never tell you what happened, you would have to be around when the dirt go down. Sorry."

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