Necessary Roughness, Week 13: Thanksgiving Hangover
It was a rousing weekend of celebration and football… actually more celebration than football, as by Sunday I was reduced to a hungover wreck, capable of little more than dully gaping at the TV, not really sure what game was on or if indeed I was even watching football. I had gone out to a friend’s house for daytime T-Day and watched the Detroit Lions crush the Green Bay Packers, 40-10 on a 35-year old square-screen Motorola color TV which still-worked perfectly. In its time it was top of the line, and it brought back memories of Dad and me watching games together on a similar set. Then dude broke out the moonshine and it was on. By the time I got back to my house (and a second feast prepared by my awesome roommates) the games became a dull roar in the background as I continued to slip into alcohol delirium. Suffice to say Dallas edged the Raiders, 31-24. By the time that was over I was coherent enough to watch the Ravens pull out a close one over the Steelers, 22-20, which I’ll talk more about later. Festivities started again and by the end of the game I was running around the back yard in my underwear, shaking a mop at the sky and projectile vomiting at squirrels.
Ahhh… memories. Hang on, I think I have to barf again.
Sunday was full of good games but probably the most-anticipated contest of the weekend was on Monday night, with the Saints taking on the Seahawks in Seattle in the loudest stadium in the world. I was surprised as anyone at the outcome as the Seahawks and their punishing fans actually registered on the Richter Scale in their 34-7 trouncing of my NFC Super Bowl pick, the New Orleans Saints. I will stick with my pick, because it was picked, but with Seattle looking to have the home field advantage in the playoffs keeping the ‘Hawks out of the Super Bowl is gonna be tough.
The Houston Texans’ miseries continued (in the form of a franchise history-long ten game losing streak) as they fell at home to the New England Patriots, 31-34, in a wild game that saw the lead change five times in the second half alone. About the only thing the Texans had to be happy about was the return to the sidelines of head coach Gary Kubiak, coming back after suffering a mini-stroke. The Texans also continued to have the most idiotic name in sports. I mean, isn’t anyone from Houston a “Texan”? and no, I am not talking about all the illegal aliens. Then there is that logo… a bull… then why isn’t their name the Houston Bulls? Right, the Chicago Bulls already have that. Then how about the Houston Steers? O.K., thats stupid too, but not as stupid as the Houston Texans with a bull on their helmet. No insult intended, as I actually like the team, just hate the name. Oh, who cares…
At any rate the Pats continued their run to the playoffs but simply cannot be considered the frontrunner after the Denver Broncos 35-28 victory over divisional rivals the Kansas City Chiefs. The Paytonator continued his amazing season (he and that cadaver neck of his have thrown 41 TD’s already) after overcoming a shaky, two INT first half to end up throwing five TD’s. Alex Smith and the Chiefs staged a furious comeback (don’t you just love that term “furious comeback”?) and it all came down to a 4th and four from deep in Bronco territory with 1:44 left. But the “furious comeback” ended when a Jones pass fell incomplete in the end zone. Then “furious” turned into “bummed”.
Wow, you’d think I actually watched all these games. But now that tour is over my access to the Red Zone channel has been revoked. So thanks, NFL.com!
The Baltimore Ravens stayed in the thick of the playoff race with a big win at home over the Pittsburgh Steelers. Big Ben kept it close (as did the obstructionist antics of Steelers head coach Mike Tomlins) driving the Steelers to the goal line where the Ravens dug in for one of the most brutal stands I have ever seen. Anyone who says rugby is more violent because they don’t wear pads needs to check the replay of Le’Veon Bell getting hammered by two Ravens in a zit-popping hit that was so hard that not only did his helmet fly off but he was knocked unconscious by the blow. That brought up a weird rule I had never heard of before… that when your helmet gets knocked off your forward progress stops right there. But the Steelers finally got their TD and in the end it came down to whether they could tie the game with a two-point conversion. And they couldn’t, so they lost, which was probably karma after Tomlins getting away with a no-flag after standing in the way of Baltimore kick-returner Jacoby Jones and obviously knowing he was doing so, despite his protests otherwise. Tough loss for the Steelers, big win for the Ravens!
I was gonna write about the Cards but they lost. I was gonna write about the Giants vs. the Redskins and that bullshit call the refs made, awarding the Redskins a first down and then taking it back after the Skins had run another play, but I’m too disgusted. And I was gonna write about the Panthers continued success, another victory for the Bengals, and more in general about the sport that we all adore but quite frankly I am still hungover from Thanksgiving. So I will leave that to you, my legion of football lovers. Let’s hear from you!