Brett Favre is apparently retiring. This surprises me immensely, especially considering that his last pass was an interception, but the man’s gotta do what he’s gotta do. And the fact that he’s reasonably healthy and is ready to get back to his family life is probably a huge thing for him, too. Hate to see him go, but better on his terms than others’. He’s one of the greats, and he won’t be forgotten.
After winning a playoff game for the first time since I was 9 (a game they didn’t have to play in last year), the San Diego (Super) Chargers head to the Room Temperature FieldTurf Tundra of the RCA Dome for a rematch with Peyton Manning and the Colts. Something tells me Manning won’t throw six interceptions this time, as he did in the Colts’ loss to the Chargers at
Jack Murphy Qualcomm Stadium earlier this year. The Chargers always seem to give the Colts a game, so we’ll see how they respond. However, these Colts are much healthier — Dallas Clark and Marvin Harrison are back — than the Colts the Chargers faced earlier this year. Tough odds…my brain tells me the Colts will come out on top, but my heart says the Chargers can do this. (As it should.)
Yesterday’s games marked some of the best playoff football I had ever seen. The Lambeau Snow Globe (as it’s come to be called) will go down in the highlight reels for a long time. Ryan Grant did a marvelous job shaking off a very inauspicious start to the game (two fumbles lost) to become one of the top three single game rushers with 201 yards. And Brett Favre was just Brett Favre. What a revival for his career. I haven’t seen that guy so happy to play football in a long time.
And the Patriots…wow. Tom Brady played arguably the best game for a quarterback in NFL playoff history last night. He West-Coasted the Jaguars to death, absolutely shredding their D with a steady dose of short passes and Laurence Maroney runs. In the end, I don’t see how the Patriots DON’T run the table — but that’s why we play the games…
The San Diego Chargers won’t leave San Diego for the duration of the playoffs except, God willing, to go to Miami for the Super Bowl. ;) It came at a price, though — both Philip Rivers and LaDainian Tomlinson — winner of this year’s NFL rushing title — got injured in the game. Good thing they’ve got that first-round bye to rest up. Hopefully they’ll be alright.
Kudos to Jake Delhomme, for coming back for his first game in a month and ending on a high note as the Panthers beat the Saints in a pretty meaningless game. It’s something to build on, at least. Rumors are swirling that Keyshawn Johnson is seriously pondering retirement — check out Jay Glazer’s report. I’ll talk more about the Panthers as the offseason moves begin.
This 49ers/Denver game is like watching a football game in 1997 — primitive graphics, standard definition cameras, no yellow line…eep! Good game though — in fact, Joe Nedney just hit a 36-yarder to win the game, and just like that, the Broncos are out of the playoffs. The Chiefs are in as a result. Crazy. I kind of wanted the Broncos to get in, because the Chargers beat ’em convincingly both times. The 49ers’ Frank Gore is an impressive runner — I haven’t seen much of him this season. Alex Smith has clearly come a long way (quietly, too!), and Jay Cutler clearly feeds off high pressure, but it just wasn’t enough for Cutler today. Good things will happen for him, though.
The Lions and Dallas…well, that’s why Week 17 is always interesting. Wonder what (Really) Drew Bledsoe will have to say on the subject. ;)
Tonight will be a Brett Favre orgy on Sunday Night Football as the Packers travel to Soldier Field to meet up with the Bears. This game is pretty meaningless, too, as the NFC playoff field is settled and the Packers are out, and the Bears have had the number one seed wrapped up for a while now.
So that’s it for Week 17…going to record tonight’s game. I’m off to get ready to do…something. I think.
So the Chargers just capped a comeback from 17 down to beat the Broncos 35-24 in Denver, claiming sole possession of first place in the AFC West. LT had four touchdowns, and it was the first time an NFL team had come back from 17 down to win in two straight games. Very impressive. I would feel a lot better about this game had Igor Olshansky not lost his damn mind and thrown a left and right hook on Tom Nalen on the Broncos’ last drive of the game. This helped move the Broncos up to the 50 yard line and put them in serious striking distance. Then, Drayton Florence incurred a defensive delay of game penalty by not letting Rod Smith get up. So, here we are: 1st and 5 for the Broncos with 20 something seconds left. I’m sitting in my chair IMming profanities to Ale and Chris, clearly dismayed over the situation. Then, like a flash of light from $deity, Shaun Phillips chases down Jake Plummer, gets the sack, and Plummer coughs it up. The Broncos, in yet another epic moment of scatterbrained lunacy, recover the fumble in-bounds. Had the ball gone out of bounds, they would’ve been back far, sure, but had another shot. Instead, the clock runs out, and the Chargers win. Whew. Congrats once again to LaDainian Tomlinson. He’ll obliterate the touchdown record and a lot more this year, I think. What a great player and — most importantly — a great guy. Rest assured the Tomlinson jersey is making an appearance on the CofC campus tomorrow.
This was a great win for San Diego, especially considering the Colts lost for the first time this year to Tony Romo and the Cowboys, bringing the Chargers within a game of the #1 seed in the AFC…not baaaad. :) (Speaking of Romo, have you seen Drew Bledsoe’s Blog? TOO hilarious!)
The Panthers defense pulled out a perfecto today, blanking the St. Louis Rams’ vaunted offense 15-0. Carolina’s offense was wildly inconsistent as per usual. DeShaun Foster left the game with an injury (it was only a matter of time). DeAngelo Williams ran for 114 yards and is making a serious case to be the featured back in Carolina. Steve Smith had a touchdown. Ho, hum. Haha. I can’t say enough about this defense, though, giving Marc Bulger one hell of a day. The Rams are done, especially without Orlando Pace. With New Orleans being torched by the Bengals today and the Falcons losing their fourth straight, the Panthers suddenly find themselves with a slight advantage in the NFC South (they have the head-to-head advantage over New Orleans having beaten the Saints earlier this year).
This was a terrible weekend for injuries (and Ale’s fantasy teams) as Donovan McNabb tore his right ACL, ending his season, and Brett Favre has a nerve problem in his elbow, which could threaten his consecutive starts streak. LaMont Jordan’s also done for the Raiders as he tore his MCL as well.
More great blogs tomorrow, including a fantastic Word 2007 feature and praise for more oldschool Ryan Farish.