Divisional Playoff Trash Talk

Well, it is here. The most exciting weekend of the pro football calendar, divisional playoff weekend. And I am posting Trash a little early, because otherwise Marcy was threatening to post this music video (Danger Will Robinson Danger!!) which clearly would have been traumatic for the entire universe. So having prevented said disaster, let us proceed to the nitty gritty.

By the way, before we get to the games, I want to make sure that everybody is familiar with the newest star on the Patriots, Danny Woodcock.

First game on Saturday is Baltimore at Pittsburgh. Black versus Blue (okay, purple). You know the drill here by now, and there is nothing new. Big Ben and Hines Ward against Ray Lewis, Terrell Suggs and Ed Reed on the one hand and Joe Flacco, Ray Rice and Anquan Boldin against James Harrison and Troy Polamalu on the other. They are all ready to rumble. The Steelers have won the last six games with the Ravens when Big Ben has been on the field, but the cheeky pick seems to be the Ravens. Not here; Steelers win at home.

The late game on Saturday is Green Bay at Atlanta. This is flat out tough to call. Both Aaron Rodgers and Matt Ryan are playing lights out. There are two prime considerations though. The Pack defense has jelled into an awfully solid and imposing unit, but the Dirty Birds rarely lose in their home dome. The Pack has a new star running back, James Starks, who set a franchise rookie playoff record with 123 yards last weekend. Hey, how about a shout out to Donald Driver, one of the good guys and long time underappreciated great receivers in the league for a long, long time. The guy just keeps getting it done. The Falcons have Burner Turner who has been rumblin through foes as usual. I have no idea who will win this, but since I have to choose, I am going with my childhood favorite team, the Packers.

First up Sunday is the SeaSquawks at………Da Bears. Seattle is a huge underdog here. Brian Urlacher and the Bears defense are back to Monsters of the Midway mentality and swagger. Jay Cutler has quietly become much more efficient and less error prone under Mike Martz. The difference I see here is the weapons other than quarterbacks (Matt Hasselbeck played lights out last weekend in the upset over the Saints). In that department, I actually like the Squawks skill people on offense better than the Bears counterparts on offense. But I like the Bears defense better. I know I am going to regret this, but I am taking Seattle in an upset.

The last game of the weekend is the one everybody is waiting for. Yep, it is Wes Welker’s FOOTball game, where all the FEET play FOOTball. Bieber Brady has just got it all over young Mark Sanchez. The Pats defense has really come into its own over the course of the season, which you knew it would under Bill Bel. Where has the Jets running game gone?? LT has disappeared and Shon Greene is out. Here is the deal, since Rex Pyan has been the Jets’ coach, the home team has won every game in this series. The Pats are at home. And there is that Brady thing (not to mention tom is undoubtedly a little geeked up by all the chattering the Jets have been doing. The Jets just cannot keep up with the Pats; Pats win.

That’s it folks, lets rock and roll. By the way, the music is something I think a lot of you have probably never heard, Arthur Lee and Love with a song called Between Clark and Hilldale which is the location of the old Whiskey a Go Go in West LA. Love was a regular act there back in the day. It is very different and I think you will really like it.

  1. Peterr says:

    You should trust your gut, bmaz. Da Bears defense is going to feast upon the Seahawks.

    (And “danger will robinson” doesn’t begin to cover it.)

  2. emptywheel says:


    I’ll have to remember that threat cause it worked like a charm (and to be honest, I was worrying about posting it and jinxing the Pats–I’m frankly a lot more worried about the J-E-T-S than I think bmaz is).


    (Based on what I picked in our household pool–though if I had it to do over I’d pick the Ravens.)

  3. croghan27 says:

    As for Ravens/Steelers …. methinks that were the game in a neutral venue, go Flacco, Suggs and Lewis. Were it in Baltimore the same …. but the kicker (no pun)is that it is in the land of the Three Rivers and Big Benjamin doth not take to losing there at all, at all,

    If yer a betting person … fer-get-it! last possession and probably a field goal wins it.

    emptywheel called it spot on ….

  4. nomolos says:

    Not being a foot fetishist I cannot pick Mrs Ryan as a winner nor can I pick her husband’s team. The Ravens will beat down the sexual assaulter. The other side…they are just fodder for the future.

      • nomolos says:

        No doubt that would be a good matchup but my picks in the pool are Pats/Falcons. Frankly I am a little surprised by the Pack this year but that is because I am American league parochial and have been since I arrived on these shores. This is the first year in 46 years that I have not been to a Pats game.

  5. radiofreewill says:

    “Tom, sit up with me, I need to talk to you.”

    “Oh honey, wait, the maid hasn’t even brought my coffee, yet.”

    “Things haven’t been the same, you know…”

    “Today, sweetie, I’m going to concentrate on beating the Jets!”

    “…since the baby.”

    “And, I just woke-up from a nightmare…Ryan and Cromartie were in my huddle, talking trash to me while Coach was calling the play in my ear – I’m still confused!”

    “You don’t look at me the same way you used to, and now der towel-snapping isn’t funny anymore, either.”

    “I know Coach is going to get me through this! He’ll find a way for us to beat the Jets! And then I’m going to throw it all right back at them, and give Inez Sainz an interview!”


    • scribe says:

      Tom Brady, after living a full life (and putting up with the stuff you recite in your post, RFW), died. When he got to heaven, God was showing him around.

      They came to a modest little house with a faded Patriots flag in the window. “This house is yours for eternity, Tom,” said God. “This is very special; not everyone gets a house up here. You’ll like the media room and the gym, I’m sure.”

      Tom felt special indeed, and he walked up to his house.

      On his way up the porch, he noticed another house just around the corner. It was a 3-story mansion with black & gold sidewalk, a 50-foot tall flagpole with an enormous Steelers logo flag and, in every window,

      a terrible towel. Even the stucco was trowelled with great skill and taste into hypocycloids.

      Tom looked at God and said “God, I’m not trying to be ungrateful, but I have a question. I was an all-pro QB, I hold many NFL records,

      and I even won a few Super Bowls. I even did a lot of Pennance in advance; I had a supermodel wife.”

      God said “So what’s your point, Tom?”

      “Well, why does Roethlisberger get a better house than I do?”

      God chuckled, and said:

      “Tom, that’s not Roethlisberger’s house. It’s Mine.”

      Note, too, this: Kaiserwetter, Fuehrerwetter, Steelerweather.

      Stillers 7, Ravens 0.

  6. jididly says:

    jets patriots the game everybody is waiting for? Sorry Bmaz but it’s easily the Ravens Steelers game. just check out
    the right hand side of the screen of http://espn.go.com/sportsnation/polls

    sure, I hope the jets beat the patriots but i don’t think its gonna be close.
    The spread for the ravens steelers game is ravens 3 points which means these teams are as even as possible and steelers are predicted to be up 3 for homefield advantage. But the ravens beat the steelers at heinz field earlier in the year and they’ll do it again. Go Ravens!!!

  7. JohnLopresti says:

    Is Norm Van Brocklin playin (used to be on Rams at qb)? Bobby Lane (Lions qb)? MacIlhenny(9ers RB)?

    Time machine clicks to the Strip. Albert Lee, of the Little Red Book.

    Ok, Harbaugh, its your season. Soon as 2 elders clear out their lockers. (9ers)

    For next year. *kay?

    I think the video clip I clicked was some jumbled newsreel, so I will sit this weekend out, so to speak. Gotta car in the driveway that I probably should wash, and keep the television Off. I think I got the Dr. Who version of the trash talk out of some time warp. Woof.


    NB. this is the annotated version of this comment.

  8. bmaz says:

    Adam Schefter:

    Potential hope for Packers and Jets: No. 6 seed has prevailed in four of last five No. 1 vs No. 6 matchups in the NFL postseason.

  9. fiver says:

    Baltimore – Ray Lewis may be the best football player since Walter Payton, and he knows that his remaining shots at another ring are limited.

    Packers – defense (hope I’m wrong).

    Da Bears – tough defense, much better offense than given credit for, single digit wind chill. Special Teams battle could be really fun to watch.

    Jets – hey, it could happen.

    very cool jams, thanks.

    • bmaz says:

      Isn’t that a great track? I had not even thought about Arthur Lee and Love for years until about a week ago when Lisa Derrick at our sister blog La Figa wrote about some good old fashioned police brutality outside a club just a few doors down from the old Whiskey a Go Go, where Love was the house band off and on, and I got out my old Love album this song is off of, Forever Changes. It is really awesome stuff, throughout the whole record.

  10. Linnaeus says:

    I’ll be cheering for the Seachickens over da Bearsss, but I don’t see them pulling this one off on the road.

  11. billthechowchow says:

    Packers-Falcons game tonight – from a former Falcons fan: Go Packers! Why? Nothing to do with actual football, but I do have my reasons. 1. Falcons fans really suck. My husband is a Saint, and we have a blast in the Super Dome, but the Georgia Dome is a bad night in the trailer park. 2. Michael Vick. Yeah, I still hold a grudge no matter what Arthur Blank says or does. The Falcons let him lanquish here flipping off fans and torturing/killing dogs in his spare time. 3. Clay Matthews (Packers defensive linebacker) sacks Michael Vick on a regular basis and enjoys it.

      • radiofreewill says:

        Yep, the Ravens ripped-off 21 unanswered after I posted that, but the Stillers look to have made the better halftime adjustments. I’m thinking it’ll be a horserace in the fourth…

  12. rosalind says:

    nooo! nothing good will come of this: San Francisco Giants to play ball with Showtime in new show

    Showtime is teaming up with Major League Baseball Productions to develop a new, unscripted series about the Giants. The series, which will air during the baseball season, will “chronicle the competitive and complex world of professional baseball,” a Showtime executive said. The makers of the series will follow the team during the off-season, spring training and during the regular season.

    MLB, not too late to pull this bone-headed idea. keep the entertainment on the field, and don’t be singling out one particular team during the freakin’ season.


    (emphasis & disbelief: mine)

    • emptywheel says:

      C’mon. Think of the poor MLB. Next year BOTH the NFL and NBA may have lockouts. Which leaves hockey and baseball to pick up the love of all those disgruntled basketball and football fans (though admittedly, some of us just stop watching sports in the off-season).

      So they gotta do something to be dickish.

      • phred says:

        LOL, I was thinking of placing an emergency call to CBS to ask them to just start showing Heidi now and put us out of our misery ; )

    • bmaz says:

      I would like to take this opportunity to note that Terrell Suggs and Todd Heap are both ASU Sun Devils.

      Also, and not since Grandpa Pricky keeled over and died has there been such a tragic loss here at Casa de bmaz. My 70 inch big screen teevee has fritzed. My eyes suck too bad to watch these games on this what suddenly looks puny 27 inch job I about broke my back carrying in here from the bedroom. I need a drink…..

        • bmaz says:

          Dude, I be needing all the beer to help me squint at this damn 27″ teevee. It is like watching on an iPhone in comparison. Had to put it on an old steamer trunk and park it in the middle of the floor closer to the couch so I could see it.

        • Petrocelli says:

          I have a 60″ Pioneer with HD Broadcast of all games, cuz we don’t suffer blackouts in Canuckistan and it is darn close to being there …

          Bmaz, Panasonic has a great 65″ they just previewed at CES in Vegas … worth getting if you’re used to a
          great TeeVee !

      • phred says:

        Ouch. That was arch.

        As for your TV, I’d turn it on its side, put four legs on it and use it to hold your chips, beer, and feet for the rest of the playoffs ; )

    • scribe says:

      Talk about getting off on the wrong foot with the officials. To be a fair, though, I think this latest anti-fun directive comes too close on the heels of the J-E-T-S JET JETS JETS making noises that sound like Buddy Ryan has returned to lace on his bounty boots, saddle up and swing his riding crop all the better to strappado the Patsies’ tootsies with, to be anything other than causally related. (Heh. Two pedestrial references beyond anyone else.)

      Oh, yeah.

      Stillers 24, Ravens 21.

    • john in sacramento says:

      From your link, this makes sense

      The only explanation, according to Thomas Posch, of the Institute for Astronomy of the University of Vienna, is a local change of the horizon: Since the ice levels are sinking, so does the horizon. The Sun’s rays—coming at a very low angle because of Earth’s inclination—don’t get blocked by a mass of ice to the East and they can reach areas that were covered in shadow, illuminating them directly.

      My first uneducated thought was, the North Pole is racing toward Russia, and it’s pushing Greenland South!


      • phred says:

        What… the North Pole, shoved its little feet against Greenland and like a raft, it shot south, while the pole swam north?

        As disturbing as this is, I like the way you think ; )

  13. Mary says:

    I was in the Heidi demographic and remember thinking my father was having some kind of medical seizure.

    The best part was when they ran the sports bulletin update as the poor girl had fallen from her wheelchair and was trying to get up and he and my oldest brother burst out laughing and my mother kept shushing them.

    Dang that was a loooooong time ago.

    • phred says:

      and remember thinking my father was having some kind of medical seizure.

      LOL! I was lying on the floor right in front of the TV with my folks and three teenage brothers behind me and I can still hear the cries of disbelief that turned to alarm. At that age, I didn’t care strongly one way or another about football, but I’ll never forget the reaction of everyone else in the room ; )

  14. emptywheel says:

    So, um, phred, is the rest of the household preparing to root as loudly for your home team as you rooted for his?

    A stressful day in the phred household.

    • phred says:

      That remains to be seen ; )

      Our posts crossed by the way. I don’t even want to think about the potential gloating now that Pittsburgh has advanced if my Packers don’t do the same ; )

      • scribe says:

        FWIW, there are few people more surprised than I that Pittsburgh has managed to survive this game.

        As partisan as I am when things Stillers are concerned, I went into the game strongly doubting they would win and the first half left me deeply depressed. But, I was not surprised they were losing. What did surprise me is that they came back to win, scoring – what – 24 unanswered points behind a craptacular o-line. Funny, though, how Ben got better once he lost that faceshield.

        As to my other picks, I’m going with Packers, Patsies, and Bears.

        Packers seem to be on a roll and Atlanta has been a cipher all year to me.

        Bears will outclass the Seahawks, Pete Carrol can’t pull any recruiting magic out of his hat, and Chicago is a cold place in January. Much colder than the Rain City.

        I’m picking the Patsies over the J-E-T-S JETS JETS JETS for the simple reason that for the last couple months I’ve been working and living out of a suitcase in a burg infested with J-E-T-S JETS JETS JETS fans – make that saturated in green-and-white – and I am fed up with them and want it to stop. Now. I want to hear their pain come Monday morning. The obnoxiousness of Jets fans and their media machine is intolerable. As far as I’m concerned, the only thing that would top the JETS losing tomorrow would be the Jets winning then going in to Pittsburgh and losing to my Stillers. The latter would have the benefit of eliminating both the Patsies and a road trip for my Stillers. But, comparedto the JETS I think the Patsies are marginally better in most departments other than the QB and, there, they are amazingly superior. I think Sanchez will pull a Flacco tomorrow, but he won’t wait for the second half to start before going into a fetal position fold.

        • emptywheel says:

          Hold on, you waited until AFTER THE STILLERS GAME to write your picks down?

          Wow. For a guy who has jawed about the Stillers in these parts 3 years straight, that’s nutty.

        • scribe says:

          I was too wrapped up in (a) sleeping when the game went south (working 70 hour weeks will make one tired, I’m discovering) only to awake with a minute or two left in the third saying “WTF? They tied the f’g game? How could that happen?” and then (b) being too engrossed in watching – and expecting something bad to happen – to even think through the idea of “what teams do I pick?” I know of a number of deeply devoted Stillers fans who will ritualistically watch their games locked in their basement dens, alone with the TV, easy chair, a beer, and their pain. Not that different from me, sitting on a motel bed (no easy chair) with a snowy TV picture on a frickin’ 21 inch screen, far from my home, my kitchen (and all its goodies) and my dog. In any event, I got my other picks in before the games in question started. You’ll just have to get over my sloth when it comes to predicting the Stillers game.

          And, if anyone thinks my predictions being “late” would have any effect on the outcome of anything seriously overestimates my importance. What I say or predict will have no effect, when compared to the screaming hordes in the Ketchup Bottle. That, and any person carping about my tardiness misapprehends where I’d be devoting my efforts if, indeed, I had some special insights or my picks had some special power or whatever. If that were so, I’d be collecting that big Mega lottery ticket from last week, thank you very much.

        • emptywheel says:

          Actually, Mr. EW took a nap until the Stillers decided to show up, too. (Though as a Mick, it’s not like he has a constitutional obligation to show his loyalty.)

          Mostly, I’m just curious about your lack of entry for the Stillers.

          In any case, it doesn’t matter. Given that bmaz budged me and my Brady video out of the way, there’s no hubcap up top to win.

        • scribe says:

          I couldn’t see the point of picking the Stillers to win, after they’d already won. That said, I think my exposition makes it pretty clear that going in I wanted the Stillers to win, but had little confidence they would.

          As I noted previously, today I got my first day of the New Year off from work. YTD, I put in something like 130 hours as of yesterday. And that’s not counting commuting time. I have a perfect right to fall out….

          Nice return by Falcon Weems, there. Joe Buck should avoid making references to various of the Packers being faked out of their jockstrap, lest someone send Artie Lange over as a special guest in the booth.

        • emptywheel says:

          I’m not contesting your well-earned right for a nap. Just sayin, it’s rather odd for a committed Stillers trash talker like you for avoiding admitting your own lack of confidence until after they won.

          I mean, once my brackets were fucked up ny Peyton’s welcome loss last week, I had no confidence either that the Stillers would win. But I said that, as an uncommitted trasher.

        • scribe says:

          You make the funny:

          Just sayin, it’s rather odd for a committed Stillers trash talker like you for avoiding admitting your own lack of confidence until after they won.

          If that’s the only nail you have from which to hang a bag of grief for me, I’m not worried about the quality of yer trash. I mean, as a partisan of the Stillers I’m supposed to come into this Lions Kitties den and admit my lack of overwhelming confidence in them? Puhleeze. Just be sure to come to all my poker games – I need your money to come to its true home: my wallet.

        • Peterr says:

          Taking a nap works out well for bmaz, so you can’t exactly hate on poor scribe for following in bmaz’ footsteps.

          For that matter, it may have been the nap that put the Stillers over the top.

        • bobschacht says:

          For that matter, it may have been the nap that put the Stillers over the top.

          Nah, the recipe for a Stillers win is
          (a) Playoff Game on the line
          (b) Lots of fan noise
          (c) Gobs of adrenaline
          (d) Oodles of testosterone
          This is known in some circles as “pressure”.
          The Stillers are like old warriors and war horses: When they hear the bugle call, they stagger to their feet in the direction of the bugle. They are not bothered by adversity, or noise, or clamor. This is familiar territory for them. They know what to do.

          Young upstarts like Joe Flacco have not yet been battle hardened. The clamor and adversity seem to make him weak in the knees.

          But now behold young Rodgers. Clamor and adversity seem like an idle trifle to him. And besides that, he seems to be smart. When you see him play like this, one wonders how he can lose.

          Bob in AZ

        • bmaz says:

          Flacco did seem to get rattled, not that he was particularly having a great game to start with. Add in that, as Adam Shefter said, the new high dollar receivers TJ Where’stheballah and Anquan Boldin did not help him out at all.

        • BayStateLibrul says:

          Athens v Sparta.

          The playoffs are, in my opinion, an event, with an end zone at one end, and a graveyard at the other.

          I’m worried about my Patsies…

          I have no faith until a few beers.

          Please no turnovers for New England, and no grave digging, unless it’s to bury Rex.

        • CTuttle says:

          No Hubcap…? I still periodically polish mine…

          Btw, that Stiller game was one awesome, old school, smash-mouth game…! I’m surprised Reed didn’t break Big Ben’s nose again…!

          Rodgers is totally in the zone, the Dirty Birds don’t have a chance…

        • bmaz says:

          I would have, but she had me so flustered with the threat to post that……that…..Bieber smut; well, I do declare, I was in a hurry to get something up to save the universe.

        • CTuttle says:

          …to save the universe.

          Well, since ya put it that way…

          I do hope the Squawks put the Traitor on the ground more than 6 times tomorrow…!

          Btw, I’m rooting for the Jets just to spite the better half…! ;-)

  15. phred says:

    Congrats scribe!

    Now lets see if the Packers can follow suit so the tension remains high at my house ; )

  16. Peterr says:

    70″ TVs, 65″ TVs, 60″ TVs . . .

    Two thoughts:

    (1) Limousine liberals!

    (2) You all wouldn’t be trying to compensate for anything, would you?

    edit: replying to Petro @83

    • Petrocelli says:

      1. I compensated for my 60″ Plasma by reducing our energy consumption a further 30%

      2. It was either that or splurge on new Glasses every year …

      *Ducks and Runs*

    • phred says:

      Lets just say I hope the Falcons succumb to the same mysterious affliction that took down the Flacco Ravens ; )

      • emptywheel says:

        C’mon, girlfriend. They won’t have the opportunity!!!

        This is about the Packers D, remember. They could do with slowing down Turner (as they did once), they got some mean ass D in the last several weeks.

        • emptywheel says:


          I love Woodson and Matthews a bit myself.

          I’m mostly amazed that Green Bay looks just like the pundits have been pitching them as all year. They’ve been oversold all year. But–except for special teams–they look like That Team right now.

        • phred says:

          Guilty as charged ; ) I’m a Packer floozy ; )

          So, to give my team their due, they had a whole host of injuries this year, plus they had some kind of curse with close games, as in losing them. As the announcers said we lost 6 games this year by a combined total of 20 points. I’m really hoping that that curse has been lifted…

        • emptywheel says:

          I’m not discounting their season. I’m noting that pundits have these idealized notions of teams (trust me, it’s FAR worse for the “one of the worst Ds in the league Pats”) that rarely match how they play on the field. But this is the Packers team as billed.

          Let’s hope they keep it up.

        • emptywheel says:

          if Green Bay’s D didn’t get respect after their Pats games, then the pundits in question weren’t watching.

          The secret of the Packers is that this is a D-driven end of season drive.

        • emptywheel says:

          Dunno. I’ve been watching the Packers–as I expected–steadlily moving the ball. And then I look at the score and–oh boy!!–I realize the Pack are in better shape than I realized.

          Is this what it feels like for Colts fans?

        • phred says:

          Oh sure, first it’s “Go CONS”! And now it’s a “kiss of death”. You don’t really expect me to believe that do you?!?!?
          ; )

        • emptywheel says:

          Falcons are very good. I don’t want them to suck. I wanted a much closer game to this. But still it’s fascinating to see the Packers as they were billed all year.

        • phred says:

          I wanted a much closer game to this.

          I didn’t. My nerves couldn’t take it ; )

          Edited: The Mr. keeps threatening to cheer for the Falcons because he wants a closer game, too. The discord continues ; )

        • Petrocelli says:

          I’ll nevvuh support any team from Atlanta or Calgary … Flame ’em all !

          I am supporting Rodgers & Co. since so many in my family are Vikes’ Fans and were Elated when Favray jumped ship … that an’ keepin’ in your good books for when I make my next trip to Conn.*g*

        • croghan27 says:

          That could be the meme for the weekend …. Flacco is a good, serviceable journeyman QB but Rogers is on his way to Brady/Manning/Roethlisburger city.

  17. bmaz says:

    I have sad news to report. Many of you, especially those going back to the Next Hurrah days before Emptywheel came to FDL, remember the wonderful stories and living history essays contributed by Sara. They were unique, deep with context and facts. Sara has passed on.

    RIP Sister Sara

    • phred says:

      That’s a lovely idea, although from EW’s post it sounds like she passed away at least several weeks ago. Perhaps rather than flowers, we could take up a collection and donate it to her favorite charity/blog? Just a thought…

    • bmaz says:

      Agreed!! But not looking good for the birds from the northwest. These are hard times for birds all over. They are literally falling from the sky dead all over the globe. Two more, Ravens and Falcons, did just that yesterday. I fear another species is in its frefall now.

    • phred says:

      I hate to root against you ros, but I have to admit I would love an NFC Championship game in Soldiers Field with Da Bears ; )

      • Petrocelli says:

        Rodgers V. Cutler … very liked V. disliked QBs at the Wheelhouse would make for lots of great smack talking next week.

      • rosalind says:

        aw, as a born & bred west coaster, i am constitutionally required to support any remaining west coast team…but i share your affection for a snow bowl, if not the particular participants.

        • phred says:

          That is a dilemma, as you will be hard pressed to get a snow bowl on the west coast ; ) Too bad time is so short, the Squawks are trying hard to take a page out of the Steelers book, rather than the Falcons…

  18. Mary says:

    I’m not sure who I’m helping or hurting with this, but com’on – if your team is out of it, nothing else is as much fun to say as:

    Da Bears!

  19. bobschacht says:

    Conceding that the Bears are likely to win their game, does it strike anyone else that all the wins so far have been somewhat throwbacks to the old NFL style of play? I mean, think about it: Chicago, Green Bay, Pittsburgh.

    Its not that the old-style NFL was all run and no pass: I offer Bart Starr and Y.A. Tittle as evidence. But what were the differences? The “bomb”? Was that all? What about Wide Receivers? Didn’t they proliferate under the AFL? If you use more than 3 WR, is that an AFL thing?

    How would you rank the remaining teams on a scale with 10 = AFL playing style, and 1 = old NFL playing style?

    Bob in AZ

    • bmaz says:

      Hard to see how the Green Bay west coast offense or anything involving Mike Martz is old school.

      Hey, where were these SeaSquawks the whole game??

  20. bmaz says:

    RUH ROH Wes Welker is benched for not toeing the Pat company line and putting his foot in his mouth about the arch enemy Rex Ryan. Question: Is Bill Bel a heel for nailing Welker like this, or a shoe in for coach of the year?


  21. croghan27 says:

    It was obvious that the Pats fast offense was flummoxing the Jets ….. and, guess what – a rash of Jets injuries, the little dears were putting on displays seen only on soccer pitches ….. OH! oh! poor Jets.

    Is there not penalty for general mucking about with pretend ailments?

  22. scribe says:

    I think, for my parochial concerns (i.e., that the Stillers get to and win another Super Bowl), I think this is likely the “best” outcome I could have hoped for. The Stillers get a home game against a team that beat them and against whom they surely have a grudge. The NFC champ will be an “original NFL” team; if the Stillers get past the J-E-T-S JETS JETS JETS it will be an all-original Super Bowl.

    I think the Stillers match up well against their opponent. To be objective – and I think EW will surely agree – the Patsies’ D was always dubious. Coming into the season, more than a few people (IIRC, EW included) were questioning whether the Patsies would even make the playoffs. They seemed more hole and cipher than solid team. Few were more surprised by their 14-2 record than the serious Patsies fan….

    So, now I get to get ready for a week of inane sports-talk radio in JETS land, with an amazing breadth of opinions all concluding with “an the JETS are gonna win!”

    In the meantime, there’s an interesting show on TV about moose showing up in peoples’ backyards and the entertaining home videos that result. Imagine an edgy 700 lb moose that went into the parking garage of your condo building. This will be fun….

    • emptywheel says:

      Yup. That D tonight looked STILL better than they deserved to be. And that Sanchez only got two or three huge shots on the DBs, that’s not a bad outing for what is still really near the bottom in D.

      D wins championships. That rule never really changes (with just a few notable exceptions). This will be a much better D team next year, if there’s a season, and with BillBel’s zillion draft choices.

      I wanted the Pats to win, but really, they only looked like a team that could in the last several weeks, so this was definitely a possibility.

    • john in sacramento says:

      In the meantime, there’s an interesting show on TV about moose showing up in peoples’ backyards and the entertaining home videos that result. Imagine an edgy 700 lb moose that went into the parking garage of your condo building. This will be fun….

      Kewl, please tell me it’s a Cylon Moose

  23. emptywheel says:

    Now that the Patriots loss has thoroughly ruined my bracket, I’m starting a new pool. How many times will Jets players fake an injury next week to stop play? Will they beat this week’s 3 times?

    • emptywheel says:

      So glad you made it!! I was gonna note that you called the Jets at the beginning of the season, but I didn’t want to jinx you.

      Hope you are okay? We’ve missed you.

      • freepatriot says:

        I’m as okay as I can be, but I don’t have the time I used to have

        I don’t think I’m supposed to talk about it, but I’m still fightin

        I get time to read on occasion, and I’m glad you’re doin what you do

        PS: I think the Jets have shot their wad (when Palamalu play the stillers don’t lose) but I’m still on the bandwagon

        • emptywheel says:

          Dunno. Polamalu looked pretty crappy yesterday, even with the win. Lots of missed tackles for a guy who doesn’t often miss them. I blame the heel cause I don’t want to think that Polamalu could be losing his edge.

        • bobschacht says:

          Didn’t Polamalu have a different set of assignments? Wikipedia calls him a safety.
          Whatever, in this last game it seems to me they often had him doing stuff he wasn’t used to doing.

          Bob in AZ

  24. radiofreewill says:

    “Home early? No interview, huh? No, not there…the back room.”


    So, the Bishop of Cork receives numerous complaints that Father Flannigan is mixing his politics into the Mass, always finding a way to blame the English for everything wrong with the country, week after week, and so he decides it’s time to speak with the good Father.

    “Faith and begorry, Father, but I’m going to be with you for this week’s Mass. I’ve had some complaints that you’re giving political interpretations of scripture, so I’ve come to show you my support. Father, I want to hear a fine sermon, straight out of the book, just like it was written!”

    “Why, faith and begorry, Holiness, you can count on me!”

    The next Sunday, the Bishop is looking-on as Father Flannigan says, “And then Jesus said unto them, “And one of you will betray me.” And Peter dids’t say, “Faith and begorry, Lord, not I!” And Timothy cried out, “Faith and begorry, Lord, not I!” And then Judas said, “Blimey, Lord!”

  25. 4jkb4ia says:

    Can’t gloat. Was a miracle. Missed whole second half in the name of R’ Weinberg memorial lecture. Besides, next week I anticipate coronary.

    Thought that Rex Ryan displayed genius to focus all the media attention on him and his colorful means of expression.

    • emptywheel says:

      Gotta say, as a Pats fan I have a lot more respect for Ryan than I did for MangyMangini. I don’t personally love his coaching style, but it’s effective.

      • BayStateLibrul says:

        Boy does it suck to lose.

        Deja vu, a la Cleveland, all over again…

        “You always hurt when the season is done,’’ said Brady. “It’s like you’re on the treadmill at 10 miles an hour, and somebody hits the stop button.’’

        That somebody was the Jets. Sorry. Ryan, Globe

  26. OhioGringo says:

    Well, well, well. This was a very entertaining weekend for this football fan. All of my teams were out of it before the playoffs started(well, I do have a soft spot for the Packers because they are owned by the City of Green Bay), so I could just sit back and enjoy the games.

    Great comeback by the Steelers, damn their black hearts. Of course, I detest the Ravens, too. I DO live in a Cleveland suburb. Thank you, Green Bay for tossing an overrated Falcons team out. As for Da Bears, while Chicago deserved the win, it sure does make it easier when the refs allow defensive holding all game, does it not? I don’t think that will work next week.

    And the Jets clearly watched films of one of the Browns’ few victories, the one over the Patriots earlier this year. They made it impossible for Brady to read the defense, and when he can’t do that, it’s hard for New England to win. Some nice big plays by the Jets, too. Nice job. Anytime the visitor wins in New England, they did a nice job and played very well.

    Personally, I’ll go for Green Bay, if nothing else just to piss Obama off. Besides, Cutler’s due to screw up. And, sorry, Pittsburgh, but I’ve been a Steeler hater from way back, so I hope the Jets pull it off, but if I had to bet, I’d bet on Big Ben.