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Sunday, January 20, 2008

Top 5 ways you can tell it's cold in Green Bay

Some sure fire ways you can tell it is unreasonably cold

  • You can't see anyone's face because the fog of their breath is filling the screen
  • There are also fog clouds coming off of guys skulls
  • The fog count doubled when Frank Caliendo started spewing his hot air
  • No one can look at the camera because they are rocking back and forth to stay warm.
  • Jimmy Johnson has his hair out of place for the first time just so he can wear ear warmers.

AFC Championship Recap

So after the first drive I put up a little post about getting the breaks being as important as talent in the patriots undefeated season. As I was watching the second half begin and Donte Stallworth tipped that ball and San Diego’s defense got another turnover for Philip Rivers, I began to think about the chances that the Patriots had run out of breaks. What I didn’t account for was the talent part of the equation. On both of the Tom Brady interceptions the defense of the Patriots held and only gave up a field goal on either interception.

The biggest mistake that the Chargers made to start the second half was to start playing conservative D instead of going after Brady the way they did in the first half. All of a sudden they are giving up an underneath pass to Randy Moss that he strings into a first down and meanwhile no one is within 5 feet of Brady. Thankfully San Diego Defensive coordinator Ted Cotrell can’t keep Antonio Cromartie’s athletic ability down. That pick in the endzone was a game changer. It may not have put the Chargers ahead but you don’t want to get down two scores to New England.

Interesting to see what the Patriots fell back on when they seemed to be challenged. The drive they started after getting the ball back on a punt. was pretty much all Lawrence Maroney. Right up until Wes Welker made the touchdown reception underneath from about 10 yards out.

You do have to credit the Chargers for really outperforming ecpectations. I like Rivers more and more each game I see. I am even starting to tolerate the jaw jacking he does on the field. He responded to questions about that topic in the pre-game. He said that he was most pleased that you don't see him swearing or saying anything offensive on camera.(as I am writing this I am thinking he needs to take it down a notch or two seven) The thing I like on the field is that he looks the same on 3rd and 10 and he does on 1st and 10. There is no anxiety, or nervousness.

The real sign the game was over, was at the 7:00 minute mark in the 4th when you started to see the San Diego Chargers defensive players turning to the officilas to complain as each play was ending. Meanwhile the New England offense is taking small chunks, making the smart decisions; staying in bounds, going down early if necessary to do so.

The big key to this game is was the fact that you just can't field goal your way to the superbowl. Not usually, and especially not against the highest scoring offense in the NFL.

Phillip Rivers Starts AFC Championship

Phillip Rivers came jogging out to start the first drive for San Diego, nothing seemed wrong with the knee, but nothing called really tested him either. Chargers went 3-and-out, not really surprising considering the Patriots defense. Not really concerning since San Diego showed last week that they could withstand an early deficit. Now can they do it against the Patriots.

I do not want to take anything from the patriots accomplishments. They definitely have the talent required but you need the little things go your way, things like running into the kicker not roughing kicker on that first punt attempt. Giving the Chargers another opportunity punt but not giving them the first down.
The first drive was a 3-and out for New England as well. Tom Brady had 2 incomplete passes which matches the entire game last week.

Bill Cowhers AFC Championship Pick

Bill Cowher just went out on a limb, is tap dancing on a sapling, he picked the San Diego Chargers to upset the Patriots. I hope he is right just to see that man grinning ear to ear in the post game report.

NFC Champioship Preview

-13, -12, -11, -10, -9 degrees. That’s it, that’s the peak. Lambeau field just warmed up to minus 9 at game time. Unfortunately for both teams that is game time, in New England. By the time the game time rolls around in Green Bay weather will feel like –21 degrees.

I would love to run out a laundry list of how that feels but I have no idea, I moved from Minnesota a long time ago. I am sitting on my couch wrapped up in a blanket because the temp hit 65 degrees in Orange County.

As far as how that will affect the game. I am not as sold on the weather really helping the Packers. I mean you want to tell me it is kind of cold like say feels like 2 or 3 degrees. I buy that making the other team miserable. But with it down around a –21 degree wind chill; that is miserable for everyone.
Honestly I can’t wait for the games to get rolling it is 5 minutes ‘til game time.

A prayer to the great and powerful NFL

This Article by Chris Mortensen of ESPN prompted me to offer up this prayer.

Oh great and powerful NFL, I am a simple peasant of the nation known as fanhood, I seek the benefit of your wisdom and intelligence.

I am sure the good people of Canada love their football, eh. I imagine the people of London will show you chaps a right food turnout. I am certainly not knocking them. What I just can't get my mind around, is why you are mad at those of us who live in LA, Orange County even. You gave us AL Davis and Carroll Rosenbloom. We blame you completely for Al Davis. Is there no psych eval when you apply to own a team (give it some consideration). As for Rosenbloom, I'd thank you for him, but I really think that right after the Psych eval should come an evaluation of the personal life and possible heirs (look, I wouldn't have thought of it before either but you have to admit we have a pretty good model for crazed inheritance). Even after all that we want you back.

Your preference for warm weather stadiums is known. We are doing our part, we contribute all we can to global warming. and still nothing from you. Oh is that it. It's the Stadium. Look I can't do anything about that. It's not me, I mean I have a nice lot right by my house and you are welcome to play there. Oh, you want something a little larger. I understand that I guess. But I am not asking for a team, I just want one game. I mean the stadium issue is about money right. How much do you think you could get for the seats at the one LA game of the year. Enough to cover the shortage of luxury boxes and capacity.

I mean really, you are never gonna put a team in London quit fooling with it. Even if you want to keep this charade going, at least admit the LA is more likely. By that logic, we should get the occasional exhibition instead of oh, I don't know the country we walked out on.

As for Toronto they for sure aren't getting a team. The Bills aren't moving and the league isn't going to put another team in the same neighborhood as all the other northeast franchises. So again, why not go with the more likely prospect.

So again great and powerful NFL I plead to you, I beg of you, I can only close with. I am ready for some football

Under an Hour til the AFC Championship Game

So we are under an hour now til the AFC championship game. The talking heads have finally run out of things to say about the Patriots, the hype is growing like a a creature in a horror flick. I mean I just saw the ESPN piece where they covered his little known part in the Brady bunch television series. Now they are covering, what is the part of Tom Brady that is under the radar.
WHAT!?
Nothing, nothing goes under the radar, with him. You can't have anything go under the radar the guy gets more press than an OJ getting loaded with Lindsay Lohan stabbing and Paris Hilton, while he's babysitting Britney's kids. What is amazing to me is this need to sell it, I mean we are all watching, everyone who has the most marginal interest is tuned in. You've got the potential for an undefeated season on the line. Save those intersting pieces for midway through the game when the Patriots are hammering them.
Enjoy the game, if I think it is worthwhile I'll fire up some posts mid-game.

Baltimore Ravens Offseason

Baltimore Ravens - I covered the hiring of John Harbuagh in a previous post. So I'll try not to repeat myself. I do believe that hire sends a message of rebuilding in Baltimore. If they felt that they were close and were looking for continuity, they would have gone with Rex Ryan.
While I believe the new coaches primary concern should be if they believe Kyle Boller or Troy Smith can be the solution for them. I personally think Boller has seen all the chances he will get. Smith on the other hand I think has the potential and deserves another look. He probably would have gotten that look had Billick stayed. Harbuagh may not be to likely to gamble with the microscope he is likely to be under.
If Brian Brohm makes it to the Ravens pick they have to take him. Again Billick at the helm would leave some wiggle room where they could go defense, where they will likely lose Terell Suggs to free agency. They could possibly look to replace Jonathan Ogden who is likey to retire. Harbuagh will almost certainly go with the safe pick. Brohm is a good prospect, who could end up being a steal this late. He would only have dropped this far based on the poor play of his Louisville Cardinals.

Here are the players by position where the Ravens have signicant need

Quarterback

  1. Matt Ryan, Boston College
  2. Brian Brohm, Louisville
  3. Andre Woodson, Kentucky

Defensive End

  1. Chris Long, Virginia
  2. Vernon Gholston, Ohio State
  3. Derrick Harvey, Florida
  4. Calais Campbell, Miami (FL)
  5. Phillip Merling, Clemson

Offensive Tackle

  1. Jake Long, Michigan
  2. Ryan Clady, Boise State
  3. Michael Oher, Mississippi
  4. Sam Baker, USC
  5. Jeff Otah, Pittsburgh
  6. Chris Williams, Vanderbilt

Heat reach lucky number 13 AGAINST THE KNICKS

I covered the Heat spiraling out of control in this post. I wont go re-rant on all that I have covered there. However I must say this is just ridiculous. 13 in a row? Against the Knicks? I would have been less surprised if the Heat team that one the championship had lost to these Knicks. At least then we could have looked to the playing down to your competition, or underestimating your opponent angle. I just don't see what the justification is.
Part of their performance comes down to leadership. I appreciate the fact the Dwaaaaaaaayne Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaade (you don't get announcer voice 'til you start winning again)Dwayne Wade is not 100% recovered from his shoulder injury. But you know what I don't want to hear out of my leaders mouth "Just our luck, man," Wade said. "The ball bounced. That's been our season, been our luck." Wade said this referring to a ball that got away from him and Udonis Haslem to be rebounded by David Lee.
I am sorry, what!? Don't give me luck. Don't tell me about how the ball bounced. I wanna hear that from the guy in the third row. Fans get to pull the luck card. But I am thinking guys like Chris Quinn and Dorell Wright need a little stronger message from the Captain than that.