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Not What We Thought...

That's what I think the reoccuring theme of this weekend was something along the lines of..."maybe it wasn't what we thought" or something to that extent. Since Jade's got a lock on the review of all things boxing aka 'that non-relevant contact sport which has faded into irrelevancy', I'll review all four games since ironically enough, I sat through most of them or enough to capsulize them. Let's start with what led off our weekend and ironically enough, will be where we close out next Sunday's action...Lambeau Field.

GB/SEA- You had Darth Holmgren versus Luke Favrewalker and simply put, the force is strong in the old 4. Seattle simply put, would've been better off mailing in that game, because Green Bay wasn't losing at home. All of you who said that Green Bay didn't have a running game, Ryan Grant would like to have a word with you all. Maybe two. Those of you who said Brett should hang it up, he's curious as to how that crow you're having to eat is tasting. As for Seattle, well, what can I say? They won their division by default and needed Washington virtually having its engine quit on them midway through the 4th to win a week ago. I thought they were grossly overrated and simply put, you saw why on Saturday.

As for Green Bay, if it weren't for New England having a "Boston Year", McCarthy would've been your Coach of the Year and Favre would've been MVP. I think I said this once before on here, but if I haven't, here's the first time you're hearing it. He's having a better year now than he did when he had the likes of Brooks, Sharpe and company while winning a Super Bowl. Oh and ironically enough, he's a game away from going back to the big game nobody thought he'd play in as a Packer.

NE/JAX- Jade keeps thinking the more I continue to praise the Pats, they're going to fall eventually. Let me tell ya something sweetie, you could have a pack of black cats do windsprints throughout the stadium by all 52 Pats and these guys will keep winning. I was going to praise the Jags for playing a pretty good game, but leave it to a rookie to totally knock me out of that mindset. Reggie, here's what I have to say to you.

A) You're a Gator. That speaks volumes unto itself for this Seminoles/Scarlet Knights fan.
B) You're going home for a long Winter break while Tom's playing in 6 days. You won't be playing again unless it's a pick-up game.
C) Your defense beyond your front seven, really isn't that good. Now while you may have eliminated the "big play" from New England's's what you're missing.

Brady only missed TWICE in 28 attempts. And while he may have "checked down", he didn't miss often and when he did it, his guys made plays your offense didn't. Hence why he's about to try for his fourth AFC crown in 7 years and you' to eat popcorn with another certain someone I'll get to in a moment.

Now for yesterday's festivities... SD/IND- Maybe Norv's not the dope we thought he was. I knew Indy wasn't the mega-lo-power they were made into. Maybe the Bolts aren't the Dolts after all and here's two of the biggest ones of them all right here...

Maybe A.J. Smith is validated in firing Marty after all. I mean, they've got next to no chance against the Pats in Foxboro this Sunday, but Norv managed to succeed where Marty failed on numerous tries and what's more...Norv did it without their three top offensive pieces in the game at a critical point in the 4th. Honestly, I apologize to Norv for anything derogatory I have ever written or said about him. Perhaps he's proof positive that when given some legitimate talent (which let's be real, he had none of in Croak-land or Washington), he can actually coach these guys up.

As for Indy, let's be real.

A) The Peyton/Brady thing is over. Brady's better, stop picking a debate that's not really one to begin with. Brady's shattered Peyton's record this year with the best playmaker in all of football, Peyton merely got shattered without Marvin. Brady won Super Bowls with receivers you couldn't pick out of a lineup, Peyton couldn't get by the Bolts under a similar set of circumstances. Tom's been your superior all these years, it's simply a thing where the commercials and crap you've done have suckered the media into making you more of a darling than Tom who doesn't really seek out the spotlight. (The Greats don't have to seek it out, it finds them.)
B) Indy's defense is what everyone didn't think it was. Average. Len Jersey's Defense Handbook Page 3 states, when the first name that gets mentioned on a defense other than a star d-lineman is a safety before a corner, you have no secondary. When said star defensive lineman is out of the lineup and that safety isn't given the opportunity to make plays, your defense is cooked.

Let me be clear here people...I'm sick of teams being given more credit than they deserve. Same for people. Indy's nothing more than a clone of the Burgh, who have a slightly better pass rush due to that zone blitz of theirs. But have those corners actually cover someone and you're begging to be burned. Indy's defense couldn't keep Billy Volek and Michael Turner from scoring on them. This is supposed to be the Super Bowl Champions at home, defense better than a year ago and they can't keep Volek from scoring to ice the game?! Maybe that was the problem, behind all the numbers that had them so "good", they were no better than a year ago. They simply didn't have an inept Chiefs team to make them look better than they really were, ditto for the Ravens. Guess we won't see the Pats/Colts after all. Guess we won't get a Manning playing next week...well, maybe not THAT one...

NYG/DAL- Don't get me wrong, I'm writing this as something of a partial individual. The Cowboys did enough to lose this game. If it wasn't for Crayton not running routes or Romo not making the throws that needed to be made, they just didn't want to win even though the Giants with their uh, questionable playcalling in their final possession all but giftwrapped this. Oh yeah, the Jessica factor. Let me tell you something. If I'm Romo and my coach tells me to get away for a few days, please believe I'm going with Jessica to Cabo damnit. Not sure what to make of her folks going along for the ride other than it being creepy to the nth degree (maybe ya should've stuck with Carrie, Tony), but Jessica wasn't within 50 yards of Texas Stadium yesterday. Fact is, Tony wilted when the lights came on bright. Like he did a year ago against the Seahawks.

Then, there's Eli. Eli didn't have a spectacular, jaw dropping performance as far as the "bottom line" goes, but then again...he didn't have to. He made sure he didn't lose the game for his team and simply put, that's all you can ask of your quarterback at this time of the year. Don't lose the game, don't make mistakes that can be avoided. Romo made them and Eli, who came into this postseason off of two rather craptastic losses in consecutive years, did not. T.O., who continues to defy modern medicine and imagination with his healing abilities, came out and gave it all he had. I won't go all Skip Bayless here, but honestly, he struck a serious chord with me during his press conference. I've never seen him as emotional as he was last night and for the first time ever, I heard the man defend the guy who gets him the ball and actually MEAN IT.

For the 'Boys, perhaps they're now the poster boy for how craptastic the NFC really is. The "top seed" in the conference didn't even hold serve on its homefield and as a result, won't be playing next week. Jerry Jones got tickets for a game that won't even Texas Stadium that is. As for Coughlin, here's something that's escaped my attention about him as Giants top dog. He's the second man in franchise history to get the team to the playoffs in three consecutive years. The last man to do so? Parcells from 1984-1986 and oh yeah, the third time proved to be the charm as he won the Super Bowl. However, with Coughlin, I'm still not feeling him. I think Eli's capable of putting up better numbers and eh, maybe I'm nitpicking. Maybe I'm asking too much or thinking a bit much about someone who's only doing what he can. But in the end, it comes down to this.

Next week, we're going to get the two key components of a trade that was made four years ago, will be playing on the same day. At this point, one could call the trade a push since both teams are now reaping the benefits from it. While I'd say it's highly unlikely both will meet in the Super Bowl, both enjoyed great days (even if Rivers didn't stick around for the end of it) and have their teams one game away from a Super Bowl (even if one of them isn't able to make it, that again, being Rivers).

Oh yeah, forgot to talk about the Giants. Honestly, I sat through the end expecting the Giants to give this game away. Romo would come through, the Giants would self-destruct and do what they do best. Blame each other or Tiki for it. Instead, they clamped down on the run and forced Romo to beat them, which I was all but petrified of happening. They got pressure on Romo and forced him to make mistakes, which he did with a couple of intentional grounding penalties and under or overthrowing a ton of receivers. The secondary did their part in limiting what the receivers could do when it counted and in the end, that's what counts. Hard to believe in all these years, this was the first time they met in the playoffs. Twas a classic, albeit a forgettable one if you're a Cowboys fan (or Jessica Simpson).

All told, this is the best football I've seen in a while. With all of the whitewashes we got with the BCS's showcase (save for the KU/VT game I didn't care to watch), I forgot what fun football looked like. Should be fun this Sunday and for the record, I'm sticking with my GB/NE Super Bowl pick. Fire Coughlin. :-) (Even though I realize realistically, there's next to no chance of that now.)
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Oh, please--TO was crying crocodile tears. if there's anyone to blame for the media hype about Romo and Jessica, it's HIM. He's the one who started the whole thing with his comments about her after the first game she attended. If he hadn't decided to open his mouth, the whole thing would have died out by the next day. I laughed my ass off when he actually had the nerve to say, "I have no problems with any of my quarterbacks." I think Jeff Garcia and Donovan McNabb would have to say something about that.

If there's anyone to blame for the Cowboys' loss, it's the entire offensive line for more or less calling it a day in the second half. Hell, one of them actually stopped a Marion Barber run in the 4th quarter. When you're blocking your own teammate, you've got problems. (Of course, since I was rooting for the Giants, I have no problem with that. :D )

The Chargers were a pleasant surprise. They could have rolled over and played dead when Philip Rivers joined LT on the sidelines, but instead they sucked it up and soldiered on. I think that alone took the Colts by surprise. Peyton & Co. seemed to be sleepwalking their way through the game at times. I don't know if they had expected Marvin Harrison to be able to play or not, but it almost appeared as if they had planned for him playing and didn't exactly have a backup plan, which makes no sense considering they managed without him well enough up until now. That this loss came on their home turf should be a serious embarrassment for them.

And I'm still gonna hurt you if you jinx the Pats, Len. :p

Posted by Jade at 01/14/08 15:58:37

I think this one summed it up best about the Giants win and echoes my sentiment for the Can Coughlin Coalition.

"Great, this means we have to deal with him for one more year."- A Giants fan after the Giants sealed the deal in some

I say if they won't can Coughlin, fire the o-coordinator and bring in Billick damnit. NOW. :P

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