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Edwin Rodriguez On Matching Football Wits With Fredi Gonzalez

    JUPITER -- Edwin Rodriguez will be the first to admit he doesn't know a thing about NFL football. He didn't watc h a game all season, and that includes the Super Bowl. But when he was asked by a  Spanish-language radio station in Miami to go on the air and make weekly playoff selections, he couldn't resist.

     And the fellow manager he tested his football acumen against: former Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez. Rodriguez and Gonzalez were on 670-AM each Saturday during the NFL playoffs, choosing one team or the other. (They'll be matching baseball wits on the field later this afternoon at Roger Dean Stadium when the Braves arrive to face the Marlins.)

     "It was fun," Rodriguez said. "I think it was pretty tight. I think we had the same record. I never watched a game this season of football. But when they called me, I said, 'All right. Let's do it.' It was pretty close."

      Rodriguez said he started studying up on the NFL and also called Marlins media relations director Matt Roebuck for tips and advice.

      "I never watched a game this year, but I didn't want to say no," Rodriguez said. "I didn't want to look like I was running away or something."

      On a baseball note, Rodriguez said that Gonzalez, after being fired by the Marlins in June, called him daily for about four or five days to offer suggestions and any help that he might need.