We Ask Puppy Bowl XII Participants the Tough Questions on Media Day


Just five days before “Puppy Bowl XII” takes over your TV, players sat for the hard-hitting customary media session — but they didn’t lay down or rollover for the pawing press. We were there!

Here are some of the highlights from the 2016 rebranded “Puppy Bowl” Opening Night:

Dogster: Brooklyn, is crowd noise going to be a bigger factor for you because of your enormous ears?

Brooklyn. (Photo by DCL/Keith Barraclough)
Brooklyn. (Photo by DCL/Keith Barraclough)

Brooklyn: I’d pretend I didn’t hear that question, but we all know no one would believe me! It’s true, my ears are comically large, but that’s just part of being a 13-week-old German Shepherd.

Look, here’s the deal. We’re puppies, we don’t wear helmets — you’re gonna hear the crowd noise. But I’m a German Shepherd. I’m a working dog. I’m one of the smartest canines on the field, if not the planet. And when I retire from the Puppy Bowl, I’ll probably end up being a freakin’ cop.

So, will I hear the noise? Yes. Will it ruin my focus? Not a chance. My ancestors came to this country without so much as a collar around their neck. I’m bringing the trophy back to Germany, where the Puppy Bowl probably makes more sense than actual American football. By the way, I’d like to take this forum to thank my foster parents for undermining my heritage by naming me after the fourth most populous city in America. That was sarcasm, in case your normal-sized ears couldn’t pick up the frequency.

But seriously, no — no concerns over the crowd noise. The referee’s whistle? Well, that’s a whole ‘nother story.

Dogster: Down in the front for Andy Cohen: You’re tiny, and you’re named after a Bravo TV host — How do you plan on intimidating Team Fluff?

Andy Cohen.
Andy Cohen. (Photo by DCL/Keith Barraclough)

Andy Cohen: The question you should be asking is really, “How does Team Fluff plan on intimidating ME?” I may not be big, but I’m sturdy, and my size keeps me under the pad level of other dogs. This game is all about leverage. And chew toys, it’s definitely about chew toys.

Let’s get this out in the open: Yes, I’m pretty. Yes, my profuse coat needs to be thoroughly combed at least twice per week. You know who else requires a lot of grooming? Tom Brady — ever heard of him? That guy’s got four Super Bowl tags around his finger collars.

I hear the whispers. Team Fluff is calling me a “lap dog.” You know what? I AM a lap dog — I’m gonna run laps around them at Puppy Bowl XII.

Dogster: Coop: You’re one of the big boys in the big game — How do you plan to dominate the competition?

Cooper. (Photo by DCL/Keith Barraclough)
Cooper. (Photo by DCL/Keith Barraclough)

Cooper: Brute force. You can’t coach size, and I’ve got that in spades. Did you guys know that when I’m fully grown, I’ll be like 120 pounds?

My poop is bigger than the toy breeds on Team Ruff.

Great players play great in big games, and Great Pyrenees have ‘Great’ right in their name. Get your Milk-Bones ready.”

Dogster: Kevin, thanks for joining us at Puppy Bowl Opening Night, we weren’t sure if you’d show …

Kevin. (Photo by DCL/Keith Barraclough)
Kevin. (Photo by DCL/Keith Barraclough)

Kevin: I’m just here so I won’t get fined.

Dogster: Why are you wearing that oversized cone around your neck? Did you just get fixed, or do you not want us to see your eyes?

Kevin: I’m here so I won’t get fined.

Dogster: What’s the key to victory on Sunday?

Kevin: I’m here so I won’t get fined.

Dogster: Is this defiance all because no one ever called you a “Good Boy?”

Kevin: I’m here so I won’t get fined.

Dogster: Moving on. Bella, at 20 weeks, you’re one of the oldest dogs in the game — How are you feeling, and will this be your final game?

Bella. (Photo by DCL/Keith Barraclough)
Bella. (Photo by DCL/Keith Barraclough)

Bella: It’s true, I’m no spring chicken. I’m a dog, who also has the name “Rat” in my breed. It’s very confusing, especially for me, since I have such a tiny head. My brain can’t be that big, it just can’t.

You know, at 20 weeks, you don’t run like you’re 15 weeks anymore — that’s a veterinary fact. But it’s not all bad. I have more life experience than any of the other puppies in this game. Football is a fall sport, and I was pretty much the only dog here even alive in the fall. I was getting house trained when these guys were still gestating.

They say, “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” Well, I’m gonna teach these young ones a thing or two, I promise you that.

As for if this will be my last game or not — look, I don’t worry about the chatter. I don’t read the newspaper — I pee on it.

Puppy Bowl XII airs at 3 p.m. EST Sunday on Animal Planet. Visit the network’s website to see the full Puppy Bowl starting lineup.

Read more about dogs in sports:

About the author: Tony Maglio is a writer/reporter based in Howell, New Jersey. He inherited a cat, Rory, when his now-wife moved in. Together, they adopted a kitten, Griswold, to be a little brother and friend. That backfired terribly, so now they’re planning to add more chaos via a rescue dog. Tony is a TV journalist for Hollywood trade, TheWrap, and an alum of the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism. He was a freelance writer for five seasons of Saturday Night Live. Follow him on Twitter, @TonyMaglio.

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