Michael Casey part 2
I decided to make my way to The Grosvenor House Hotel where the team were staying, and then head onto Trafalgar Square for the fan rally. The players had a walk-thru at Wembley that morning and I was hoping to catch them on their return. Unfortunately I arrived later than planned due to having a 'big breakfast' at the famous Ace Cafe on the North Circular Road.
Outside the Hotel the security guy (anyone attending the practice on Friday will know him as the one telling us to keep off the green matting!) told me the players now had free time until the 11:00pm curfew. Adrian Clayborn, Mason Foster and Da'Quan Bowers came out and signed a photo for me, Mason asking me how long I had supported the Bucs and being amazed that it had been since 1986, three years before Mason was born!).
Some Buc personnel went jogging, some players went for a walk, and some even wanted me to let them know the best place to eat!. Mike Tice a former Vikings Head Coach and now a Bears coach walked past me, and he was massive. Was he really out for a walk?, or was he after me for details of the "Donald" play?
I decided to take no chances and head for Trafalgar Square and to merge into the crowd where he could not spot me. There were plenty of people at the fan rally, I spotted Dave Cambridge in the VIP bar, and I ran into Gary Bottley, who kindly let me know where the Texas Embassy Cantina was for the evening Bucs UK meal.
We all met up around 6pm for a great event arranged by Wayne Hough, (kudos Wayne)lots of stories were told, and there were guest appearances by TJ Rives, and the two guys who do an NFL round-up on Sky Sports news. At £4.20 for a bottle of Bud no one could afford to have too much to drink, however this didn't dampen the evening as everyone seemed to enjoy themselves.
I was especially impressed by John Zinkus who demolished at least four puddings. Whether this had anything to do with him asking Frank Okam on Friday his calorie intake, I'm not sure? For the record Okam told John it was 6,000 calories a day dropping down to 4,000 on match days. Is John trying to bulk up to be the next Frank Okam?