NEW ORLEANS — Carlos Rogers sat at podium No. 12 on the Superdome turf Tuesday morning for the Super Bowl’s annual Media Day session, a day in which anybody (reporters, people dressed as superheroes, clowns) can swing by and ask a question. He got good questions, he got bad questions, he got stupid questions.
But the former Butler High School star wasn’t fazed by any of it. This is the first time in Rogers’ eight-year career that he’s sat on this spot, only five days before he’ll play in the Super Bowl. And while he had a big smile on his face for much of the hour-long session, his eyes weren’t filled with wonder or surprise.
Even though he was only one of 14 49ers given his own riser, usually reserved for the team’s most important players, Rogers didn’t think Tuesday was anything unusual. Maybe there’s just not much that can surprise the 31-year-old cornerback at this point in his career.
“This isn’t the first time I’ve been in front of TV cameras,” Rogers said. “I’m happy to be here, but to be on a riser …”
And with that, he shrugged as if it didn’t matter.
What does matter – to him and to his team – is that he’s rejuvenated his career since signing with San Francisco before the 2011 season.
While playing for the Washington Redskins, Rogers had a reputation for dropping potential interceptions.
But last season, he recorded six of them to make his mark in San Francisco’s secondary – and to earn himself a four-year, $29.3 million year deal he signed before this season.
His interception numbers haven’t been as impressive this year, but his job Sunday will be an important one.
Assuming he covers Baltimore’s slot receiver, Rogers will see plenty of Anquan Boldin, a three-time Pro Bowler who has caught three touchdowns this postseason.
Plus, the strength of this San Francisco defense is the front seven, meaning Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco could be forced into throwing the ball down the field.
“We’re up to the challenge,” Rogers said. “It’s something we’re used to. It’s because of our front seven. When we have a safety down in the block, they shut the run off and say, ‘Hey, we’re going to throw the ball at least 50 times.’ ”
But based on the way he’s played the past two seasons, the team has faith that Rogers, despite only nabbing one interception this season, will keep the receiver he’s covering in check.
Since Rogers signed with San Francisco, he’s been asked to be more versatile in the secondary.
He’s been asked to blitz on occasion. He’s been asked to play as a safety every once in a while. Sometimes, he covers the slot.
“He’s definitely been one of our forces back there,” safety Dashon Goldson said. “He’s got the respect from us.”
Which is probably why he was selected to sit at the podium that didn’t interest him in the first place. In truth, Rogers is more amped about this Sunday anyway.
“This being my eighth year, all that I’ve been through, going to the Super Bowl is unbelievable,” Rogers said. “This is the top of the game right now.”