Ah, fall in New England. Typically this time of year north easterners are preparing for the cold season, and thinking wistfully of next year. The Boston Red Sox changed all that, and for the first time since 1986, will be in the World Series. Please excuse me for a moment, because I want to recognize one of the clutch performances of all time.
Curt Schilling is the reason the Red Sox won, in my opinion. I remember watching the entire seven innings in game six, amazed that he was even on the mound when a week prior the news was he’d need surgery.
He did, and he had it. In the club house, shortly before game six of the ALCS. And the procedure had never been done before. All he did after that was throw seven solid innings when the Red Sox needed them most and re-energized a team that looked for all intents and purposes to be out of the playoffs.
How could any Boston player go out on the field and not go 200% with that kind of an example? Schilling deserves the MVP, apologies to David Ortiz, because he became the rally flag for an most improbable comeback.
Ok, back to football. Speaking of New England, they play a pretty fair game of football in them parts. The Patriots host division rival and undefeated NY Jets in a game that will whittle down the unbeatens to two, with a remote possibility that the winner of this game could be the last undefeated team still standing. The Jets are playing good enough to win, and are riding a resurgent Curtis Martin, but for them to have a chance of stopping THE STREAK Chad Pennington will have to air it out and his receivers will need to contribute after the catch.
No contest. This contest is the…
Great White Shark Game of the Week – New York Jets @ New England
Sunday October 24th @ 4:05 pm ET on CBS
Didn’t we just see this show? Didn’t a team from Boston beat the crap out of a team from New York. Ok, this is a different sport, but these teams like to go to the other guys house and break out the can of whoop-ass on each other.
At first glance it would be difficult to take the Jets in this game, but it isn’t as much a stretch as you might think. The commentary tends to focus on the the poor records of the Jets first five opponents, while New England beat Indianapolis in week one and a highly touted Seattle Seahawks last week. Along the way they stunk up the place in Arizona and were played tough by then winless Buffalo until they broke it open in the fourth quarter.
One thing you can count on is a versus Jets Patriots game will be emotional. Mid season AFC East supremacy and an inside track at home field advantage is up for grabs in this contest.
Shark Sighting – Curtis Martin has been the spark plug for the Jets offense, while the Jets defense have shown signs that Herman Edwards defensive schemes are starting to make sense. He’ll need to have a big day for the Jets to win this one.
Whale of a Game – Jacksonville @ Indianapolis
Sunday October 24th @ 1 pm on CBS
Three weeks ago the colts came to Alltel stadium and dealt the Jaguars a loss with some late fourth quarter drive that ran over seven minutes off the clock and closed out the first half of this AFC South battle of the Titans (with apologies to Tennessee, whose team may be the Titans but are playing like the teeny weenies) that will go a long way to deciding the division championship. Indy has already one on the road at Tennessee as well, and a loss by the Jaguars will dig a deep hole for a team looking for some respect and a playoff berth.
Fred Taylor has shown signs of life recently, but there’s no place like dome for a Jacksonville loss as the Jaguars haven’t won in a dome since beating Minnesota 31-3 in 2001. Byron Leftwich has been firing the ball well but goes into the game with a sore left shoulder he hurt in the second drive of a win over Kansas City last week.
Shark Sighting – While Leftwich has shown recently the stuff that can make him a top five quarterback in the NFL, it’s the Peyton Manning Show that holds the most interest. Toss in a big dose of Edgerrin James and you have a recipe for a pill that may be tough for the Jaguars to swallow.
Chumming the Waters – Arizona @ Seattle
Sunday October 24th @ 1 pm on FOX
Unless your team is playing baseball in St. Louis, this is not the week to be a Cardinals fan. Arizona goes into the teeth of an angry Seattle Seahawks team that was shocked by the St. Louis Rams two weeks ago and blown out by the Patriots last week.
Home cooking is usually a great remedy for a wounded team that has the talent but needs to get on track, and the food in the Pacific Northwest has taken on a distinctly southwestern flavor this week. The Cardinals come in as an improving team but lacking the talent at key positions. With Anquan Boldin and Marcel Shipp down for the count before the season started young quarterback Josh McCown hasn’t had the guns to shoot it out in the wild wild NFC West.
Shark Sighting – Look for the Seattle defense to reassert itself on a hapless Cardinals offense. Josh McCown may be doing his best impression of a deer in hunting season, always on the run scared as hell.