Who wouldn’t want three Super Bowl rings?
Who wouldn’t want to be the top seed?
Who wouldn’t want home field advantage?
As it turned out in the NFL, if you wore green, there was no need for envy.
- They walked the walk. The Jets talked a big game all week in the media. Then they went out and played a big game. Mark Sanchez played brilliantly, while Tom Brady looked awful. The Patriots took stupid penalties while the Jets remained composed. And down the stretch, the Jets made the plays while the Patriots squandered their chances. It was what we expected, except the complete opposite.
- Making it personal is working. Rex Ryan outcoached Bill Belichick in every way possible on Sunday. His defense completely confused the Patriots offense. His offense moved the ball effectively against the Patriots defense. And in the biggest moment of the game, Ryan somehow convinced Belichick to call for a fake punt at the end of the first half. Not only did the terrible gamble backfire, it directly led to a Jets touchdown that game them a 14-3 lead and a real belief they were going to win. I’m not sure who Rex Ryan will make it personal with this week, but I won’t doubt it can work again.
- Green means “Go Pack Go.” A familiar serenade filled the stands on Saturday night as the crowd cheered, “Go Pack Go.” It wasn’t a home game for Green Bay, but the Packers felt right at home as they whipped the Falcons, 48-21. Aaron Rodgers was stellar again, throwing for 366 yards and 3 TDs and running for a 4th. Is it fate he’ll lead the Packers to the Super Bowl the same year Brett Favre disintegrates and retires for good?
- A major meldown for Matty Ice. With just over two minutes remaining in the first half, the game was tied at 14 and the Falcons were in field goal range. By the time the gun sounded, the Packers led 28-14 and the game was over. First, Matt Ryan underthrew a wide open receiver, not only missing out on a TD, but getting picked off. Then, after the Packers scored, Ryan again had the Falcons in field goal range, only to force a throw that was intercepted and returned for another touchdown. As quick as it happened, I’m guessing it will take a long time for Ryan to forget about it.
- Ben comes up big again. Once again, the Steelers and Ravens came down to the final minutes. Once again, Ben Roethlisberger made the big plays, including a 58-yard strike to Antonio Brown on 3rd and 19 to lead Pittsburgh to the game-winning score. He may not have Brady’s hair or the Mannings’ commercials, but he might just be the best QB in the clutch.
- You play to win the game. Here’s all you need to know about the Bears beatdown of the Seahawks…down 28-0 with two minutes left in the 3rd quarter, Pete Carroll had his team kick a field goal from the Bears 12-yard line. It’s the playoffs, win or go home, and Uncle Pete plays to avoid a shutout. What’s your deal?
THERE IT IS!