I suppose before I start I should bid farewell to Leslie Neilson. I was an appreciator more than a die-hard fan. He always struck me as someone who would have been far more funny in person, but he’s probably going to continue to be quoted for the rest of time, and how many people can say that?
So, did everyone watch football, or did they go with the alternate programming over the weekend? I saw two very masculine movies in the theater over the weekend. Morning Glory (Rachel McAdams is still cute) and Love and Other Drugs (So is Jake Gyllenhaal), but I put in plenty of time with the pigskin as well. With playoff pictures crystallizing, here’s a handful of things that stuck out over the long holiday weekend…
1. What did everyone make of the Andre Johnson v. Courtland Finnegan fight? Considering the intensity of the NFL it is surprising a bit, at least to me, that these scuffles don’t happen more often. I’m sure we’ll see some hefty fines and a suspension for this one (Could Johnson miss the Eagles game on Thursday?), but aside from that I couldn’t help but think how much the scene reminded me of a hockey game. You had Finnegan playing to the crowd for taking out the opposition’s best receiver (too bad the Titans got shut out), the helmets came off like hockey gloves, and they even got a few swings in before it was broken up. Of course if this happened in hockey, it may have made Sportscenter for a second or two, but then again it might not have. Maybe they should keep a little ice rink at all sporting events and let the guys go at it on skates.
2. Can anyone explain Dwayne Bowe to me? I’m not talking about why he’s good. I don’t really care if he’s good or not, but what I don’t understand is why teams can’t stop him. I don’t watch Chiefs games, but I just find it amazing what Bowe is doing in the receiving game there. Bowe had 13 catches Sunday. No other Chief had more than 3. He has 13 TDs in his last 7 games. Is this the Chiefs running game? Can you not game plan for Bowe? It’s not like if you double Bowe Tony Moeaki is going to kill you…
3. I said it was going to be a big week in the NFC. Well, the Falcons were the big winners, anyone else, I’m not so sure. I wish I knew a Bears fan. I’d walk right up to them and tell them that the Bears stink. Now, if that means that the Eagles stink and the NFC stinks, that is a consequence I will take, but don’t tell me Chicago is a good team, because they aren’t. The Eagles’ defense was dreadful on Sunday. Whether it was the hurt corners, Stewart Bradley being terrible, or just the fact they aren’t that good…I’m not sure. But, I won’t be giving any credit to the Bears any time soon. Chicago is still going 9-7. I’m sticking with it. After a couple of weeks of rising NFC momentum, the feeling has peaked. I’m off the NFC again.
4. It appears that when the Giants and Eagles meet again it may be the game that decides not only the NFC East title, but also the final playoff spot in the conference, meaning the loser could go home. The Saints have 8 wins. Green Bay and Tampa have seven. Is anyone confident two playoff teams are coming out of the East at this point? The Redskins probably dropped out of it Sunday losing to the Vikings, the ‘Boys are long since dead. That leaves NY and Philly. The Giants were lucky to escape Jacksonville on Sunday, and the Eagles played their worst game in a month. One of these teams will get to eight wins when they play again, but how much more than that is it going to take to win the division? Surely 11 wins is out of the question for both these teams. Is 10?
5. College taste? Auburn somehow escaped and Boise State ends up taking the loss. Too good a weekend for the BCS? Too good from my perspective. I don’t mind Boise State losing. I heard someone say this week if these teams like Boise are tired of complaining, they should figure out a way to get themselves into a major conference. And, while it isn’t that simple, it’s an interesting point. Don’t you think a part of Boise State relishes this role and really is in no hurry to become just another team in the Pac-10, or whatever the super-conference will be called? I think to a certain extent ignorance is bliss for Boise fans. In the Iron Bowl, I thought Alabama was going to beat Auburn, and if I did a college picks post, I would have picked them, but the Tigers pulled it out and passed Oregon in the rankings. Cam Newton update? Who cares, let’s just see the game. Oregon v. Auburn. Shoot. Out.