It was a topsy turvey weekend in the NFL. So strange plays, calls and upsets. I guess that is why football is so exciting. Here are my thoughts in a nutshell:
First of all I have to say that I am underwhelmed by the piss poor referees in the playoff games. It's as if they decided to hire Pee Wee league referees. The first bad call of the weekend came when they called Asante Samuel on a bull shit pass interference call. Watching the replays if a flag was going to be thrown it should’ve been offensive pass interference but I wouldn’t have even called that.
Coach Bill Belichick said Sunday there were "very questionable calls" and that he was "surprised that was the playoff crew" of officials, but didn't blame the loss on those calls.
Belichick is right not to blame the officials for the loss the Patriots couldn’t keep hold of the ball the entire game. You’re not going to win a playoff game when you turn the ball over 500 times. I lost count after Troy Brown dropped the punt. However, it didn’t help moral when calls are being blown such as that.
The second bull shit call of the weekend was in the Pittsburg/Indy game. Troy Polamalu dove for an amazing pick that would have pretty much sealed the deal for the Steelers. But Dungy challenged and somehow the interception was overturned. That official must have left his glasses at home because there is no other explanation for that call to be overturned.
All-Pro safety Troy Polamalu's diving interception of Peyton Manning's throw at the Pittsburgh 48 with 5:26. But when he got up to run and fumbled the ball, then recovered, Colts coach Tony Dungy challenged. Somehow, despite a dozen replays showing Polamalu's catch, the call was overturned by referee Pete Morelli.
"I know they wanted Indy to win this game; the whole world loves Peyton Manning," linebacker Joey Porter said. "But come on, man, don't take the game away from us like that."
Porter, I couldn’t have said it better myself. The whole world does love Peyton Manning. The Steelers stopped any chance for a colts win with huge sack (the fifth of the game) with little over a minute to go - game over right. Well not exactly. The colts still had three time outs but Big Ben just kneel. Instead they hand the ball off to Bettis who fumbles and it’s run back to the Indy 42 – it looked like it may go all the way until Big Ben saved the day with a huge tackle.
It’s one more chance for the great Peyton Manning. He gets his team in field goal range – although a long field goal 46 yards – to send them into OT. Thank goodness for home field advantage and since the Colts play in a Dome a 46 yard field goal is a cake walk. Well not quite. Vaderjagt – Wide Right.
Then the cameras show Dungy mouth “he missed” and they showed Cower mouth “he missed” and so on. It was disbelief all over again for the Colts fans who along with the all the NFL pundits said the Colts were going all the way – this was their year. However, those of us who have watched Peyton Manning choke every year in the playoffs – knew it was inevitable.
It was a huge upset that I for one was happy to see. Not that I am a fan of the Steelers because I am not. In fact I find their fans annoying with their stupid “Terrible Towels” but I hate the hype that surrounds the Colts & Peyton every year more. I lost more respect for the beloved Peyton Manning after his press conference. Sure he must be extremely frustrated, but you don’t play the blame game like he did. Stating, “I don’t want to be a bad teammate but there were definitely some protection issues”. Come on Peyton – I saw some of your passes – they were off the mark. Maybe you’re somewhat to blame too…
In other recaps the Seahawks beat the Redskins w/o MVP running back Sean Alexander and Carolina won it second straight game on the road beating the Bears. Well off to the NFC and AFC Championship games – my Super Bowl predictions:
Denver vs. Carolina