Finally! The saga that has plagued the entire season has some closure. Unfortunately, we are in for the same thing next season. Terrell Owens was suspended for conduct detrimental to the team, and the Eagles will apply the Keyshawn Johnson clause (do you see a connection here at all?) to keep him off the field. I can’t say the team will be better without him on the field, but I can say they will be better without him in the locker room. One player managed to alienate the entire coaching staff and 52 other players in only 3 months, which is quite an accomplishment. The 100th TD marks the last with the Eagles. It makes you wonder if there will be another opportunity with some other team in the NFL. Baltimore is thanking the football gods everyday that they didn’t get him, and they are 2-6. Never before has a team been so happy to be losing. I can assure you that this is not the last stop for T.O., because he will be in Atlanta next season. I am going out on the proverbial limb by saying Arthur Blank will make the move to get T.O. and Vick as teammates. The Falcons will think that he will be enough to get them over the hump and win the championship. They’ll think that, and they’ll be wrong.
No Mora of this
Since Vick came into the conversation, I want to make sure I choose my words about him very carefully. He made a statement to the press this week saying he doesn’t want any more criticism about him and his play; he only wants to hear praise. So, he plays one good game this season and he doesn’t want to hear anything anymore. Well, here’s my statement: I am so sorry if the media offended your fragile sensibilities, Mike. You haven’t passed for more than 200 yards in almost a year, and you’ve only done it 10 times in 41 games. You haven’t done it consistently since 2002, and you’ve only passed for 300+ yards once. Simple fact is you are an athlete, not a quarterback… or at the least you haven’t played like one. Your accuracy is inconsistent and your leadership is present only when you put your body in harm’s way. Steve Young can attest that a mobile quarterback must learn to lead the offense and make plays from the pocket to win a championship. Since Steve has a Super Bowl ring, I’d say he can speak from experience.
Peyton vs. Goliath
Now, on to the game of the season. You would think the Colts and the Patriots were playing the AFC championship game last night, and in fact it was for the Colts. If they didn’t show up, the same old questions would be raised about their entire season. The Colts put on a complete clinic the entire night and that’s what they had to do. Come into their house and dominate them in every phase of the game. I also saw something I haven’t seen in years from the Patriots. Desperation. An onside kick down by fourteen and fourth down tries with three and four yards to go. Bellichick seemed to have no answers and no trust in his defense to stop Manning and the Colts. The Pats only had 24 offensive plays in the entire first half. Tony Dungy has cemented his claim of being the best team in the league, and poised for the run for the rings.
Just Plain Lousy Game of the Week: PIT vs. GB – This was the most sickening display of offense I can remember from either team. At least the Steelers had a reasonable excuse: their starting quarterback was out and their starting running back left with an ankle injury. How exactly do the Packers have two consecutive false start penalties from first and goal, and turn it into seven points the other way? Seventeen out of twenty points off turnovers, and once again Brett Favre personally lost the game.
I had both Randy Moss and Larry Johnson starting this week, and you just can’t beat scoring fifteen points in the final 1:30 of a game. That gave me the edge against the number one team in the league. Way to go, Vermeil. Balls of steel on that call with :05 to go.
Joey Harrington is no closer to becoming a quarterback. Minnesota’s defense is softer than Sally Struthers’ midsection and Harrington still can’t orchestrate more than fourteen points.
Ricky Williams sighting: 52 yards on ten carries and a 23-yard touchdown. If the University of Miami is on their schedule, he just might have a 100-yard day.
Shawn Alexander is flirting with a 2000-yard season, and has a chance to beat Priest Holmes’ single season touchdown record of twenty-seven. Is there any doubt that he is worth the 6 million a year he will probably ask for next year?
Jack Del Rio has to right the ship in Jacksonville. That was an ugly win against the Texans. They struggled the entire afternoon against a very bad team. Sheesh.
I think the Chargers just need to start spotting teams 14 points at the outset. At least then they would have an excuse for losing (or almost losing on Sunday). Marty-ball is in full swing.
In case you hadn’t noticed, the Panthers have won five straight. The final game of the season against Atlanta could be very interesting if they continue to play as well as they have the past few weeks.
Thanks for reading, on to week ten…