So, this isn’t going to be useful in any way if you are trying to break down the NFL games this weekend, but let’s be honest, if you want a preview you can find a million of them. Let’s do something different. What if these games were being played out in Tecmo Super Bowl? Who would be the key players? Who would win? As far as I’m concerned, those are fascinating questions. Let’s take a comforting trip back to the Tecmo Era.
Bears vs. Seahawks.
If only this were Tecmo Bowl. Those Bears were loaded. Walter Payton, Willie Gault, Richard Dent in his prime. The Tecmo Super Bowl Bears are a sorry imitation. Your new San Francisco 49ers head coach, Jim Harbaugh, will be at the helm. It’s going to be stereotypical Bears football, ball control to Neal Anderson and Brad Muster. On defense, it’s Richard Dent as a shell of himself and Mark Carrier/Don Woolford trolling for picks.
The Tecmo Seahawks would be all the Bears could handle. Right off the bat you have to give them a little edge at the quarterback position with that wily veteran, Dave Krieg. Krieg has a myriad of weapons at his disposal, mostly coming out of the backfield. John L. Williams, Derrick Fenner, and Chris Warren comprise the 3-headed monster and on the outside you have Brian Blades of the infamous Blades bros. The real difference maker in this game, though, will hands down be Cortez Kennedy. This guy cannot be blocked.
In Tecmo, I’d like the Seahawks. Too much balance. In real life, I am expecting a hideous game. I’m going to say the key player will be the bald one, Matt Hasselbeck. Unless Cluster-Cutler totally implodes (a 1 in 3 shot), it’s going to take more hair club magic for the Seahawks to move on.
Falcons vs. Packers.
At first glance, the Tecmo Falcons don’t really look like an NFC #1 seed, but there is plenty of talent there. Their game plan will probably come down to the very erratic Chris Miller. He’s a little Nuke LaLoosh. Million dollar arm, and a 10 cent head. He’s got weapons. Michael Haynes. Bad Moon Rison, and Mike Rozier to name a few. On defense, the Falcons can bring a lot of pressure. Beware Jesse Tuggle, but the stars are in the secondary. Deion Sanders will shut down half the field, and your favorite St. Louis Cardinal, Brian Jordan, roams the middle.
The Tecmo Packers could use Aaron Rodgers, because I don’t see how they can win this game. Sterling Sharpe is out there, but who’s going to throw him the ball? The answer of course, is the Magic Man, Don Majikowski. The rest of the Packers roster is slim pickings in terms of star power. On defense, they have the murderous Chuck Cecil in the secondary, but I feel like Haynes and Bad Moon will just run right by him.
As you can see, the Tecmo Packers have no shot. Poof, they’re gone. In real life, this is essentially the NFC Championship game. I feel like everyone assumes the Packers are going to waltz into Atlanta and win. It doesn’t make a ton of sense, but count me among the believers. Green Bay (Rodgers/Matthews) has the difference makers. If Michael Turner can’t run effectively, it’ll be time for Atlanta sports fans to start not caring about the Braves.
Steelers vs. Ravens.
The Tecmo Steelers are a much less flashy team than their 2011 counterparts. It starts at the quarterback position with Bubby Brister. Brister is somewhere in that undefinable area of quarterbacks worse than Trent Dilfer. Meaning, you can’t win a Super Bowl with Bubby Brister. The running game, anchored by Merrill Hoge, also leaves a little bit to be desired. What can I say? Well, Hines Ward has nothing on Louis Lipps. The Tecmo Steelers can still bring it on defense, though. Great linebacking corps, Greg Lloyd, Hardy Nickerson and the last line of defense? Rod “Pick6” Woodson.
But, Grossy, the Ravens didn’t exist during Tecmo Bowl. Yeah, they did. They were called the Browns. We’re talking about the tail end of the Browns glory days here. On offense they have a King’s ransom of talent. Kevin Mack and Eric Metcalf are almost unstoppable. Outside, you have Webster Slaughter, and in an interesting twist current Ravens exec Ozzie Newsome is out there at tight end. The Browns defense has some holes, but they do have Clay Matthews Sr. Defensive player of the year? No, but a Matthews all the same.
I don’t think the Steelers have the firepower in Tecmo to keep up with the Tecmo Ravens nee Browns. In real life, this is a very tough game to pick. I do think, however, that the Ravens are getting a little too much credit for beating the Steelers without Big Ben, and for rolling a terrible Chiefs team. If you want Joe Flacco in this spot, you can have him, but I’m not interested.
Patriots vs. Jets
Oh, my. The Tecmo Patriots are one of the worst teams in video game history. The AFC East was the domain of the Bills and Dolphins in these years and the Pats were perennial doormats. The problem starts at QB. Steve Grogan, Marc Wilson, take your pick. Terrible arm strength. The only chance for any offense is dink and dunk to John Stephens and Marv Cook and maybe you catch Irving Fryar on a deep ball. If the Pats can put up any points at all the defense isn’t all bad. Andre Tippett can rush the passer and Maurice Hurst and Ronnie Lippett should be able to shut down Al Toon.
The Tecmo Jets are a team without much of an identity. No windbag coach, no Revis Island, just a middle of the road type of club. Ken O’Brien is probably an upgrade from the Sanchize, but I’m not sure he has the same post-season shamrock shoved up his hind end. We all know Blair Thomas is a bust, and Freeman McNeil can’t do it alone. The Jets best weapon could actually be, Pat “automatic” Leahy. When the Jets defense is on the field it’ll be a test of who’s worse, them or the Pats anemic offense.
This Tecmo game would certainly be the stink bomb of the week. Something would probably force me to take the Pats at old Foxboro, though. Even in 1991, I don’t want to pick the Jets. In real life, this game has become a war of words, and that’s great for New York, because they can’t win it on the field. I’m trying to talk myself into some scenario where the Jets give the Pats a better game than 45-3, but New England is pushing a double-digit favorite for a reason.