Home > Uncategorized > Wild Card Saturday: Who Needs Ambien When You’ve Got Football?

Wild Card Saturday: Who Needs Ambien When You’ve Got Football?

Saturday was one of those days when being a massive sports fan made you feel really depressed. Even with a pair of NFL playoff games on, you would have felt better about yourself by doing something other than watching two coma-inducing sludgefests.  The matchups looked good on paper, but one team was clearly better than the other. But at least the outcomes should mean some good news for us viewers in the very near future. I’ll get to that at the end. Here are just some thoughts on Saturday’s playoff “action.”

Jets vs. Bengals

  • The less-surprising result today was the Jets handling the Bengals. The Bengals just have too many flaws. Most glaring is that Carson Palmer is no longer an elite quarterback (By the way, he needs surgery). It doesn’t help that his options are also less than elite. With Darrelle Revis locking down Chad Johnson — he doesn’t deserve the other name, even if it is his actual name — Palmer had to depend on Andre Caldwell and 56-year-old Laveranues Coles. Cedric Benson isn’t a good receiving back and the team doesn’t have a dependable pass-catching tight end. Most people would agree the Jets’ defense is better. But it’s hard to ignore the fact that the Bengals didn’t have the personnel to keep up  the Jets offensively.
  • The Bengals allowed more than 160 yards on the ground. That’s what happens when you lose two of your top linebackers within a 14-day period. Rey Maualuga broke an ankle on December 27. His backup, Rashad Jeanty (UCF in the hizzy, what?!) broke his leg on the opening kickoff.
  • The Jets also dominated the kicking game. While Jay Feely did an exceptional job in his first game as a punter, Shayne Graham did a wretched job in his last game as the Bengals’ kicker.

    A Braylon Edwards drop??? You don't say!

  • The Jets are better against the run than they showed, are extremely solid against the pass and know their strengths on offense. But … they are still going to lose next week against either the Colts or Chargers. The Bengals were clearly the worst team in these playoffs and the Jets don’t have the weapons to keep up with a Peyton Manning- or Philip Rivers-led offense. They would have a much better shot against the Colts’ damaged secondary, but there run to the Super Bowl will end next week.
  • And why can’t the Jets keep up with better offenses? Well, one reason is Braylon Edwards keeps holding them back. He let another touchdown go literally right through his hands on Saturday. He just keeps dropping passes and it’s gotten to the point where he looks rather apathetic to his failures.
  • Why does Rex Ryan wear a sweater? The extra fabric just makes him look fatter and that’s not something he should be striving for.
  • Awful announcing No. 1: Tom Hammond has a way of sucking all of the life out of an exciting play and seems to routinely get lost in the middle of the action. It’s as if he falls in to a trance while something important is taking place.

Eagles vs. Cowboys

  • Awful announcing No. 2: I do like Cris Collinsworth. I think he bring some good analysis, but he was off his game on Saturday. He kept crediting head ref Ed Hochuli for making calls he didn’t make. When the Cowboys had the ball and were ahead, 24-7, before the end of the first half, he uttered something along the lines of “Now would not be a good time for Romo to throw an interception.” I would like to know when there is a good time for an interception.
  • Near the end of the game, Collinsworth was thanking John Madden for all of his help in Cris’ first year as his replacement. Then, as he was thanking Al Michaels, Michaels tested the home viewers’ gag reflex. He said that Collinsworth made his job easy because “Mantle replaced DiMaggio.” REALLY??? Because I thought Collinsworth gave more of a Brett Gardner-like performance.
  • I am just expecting Hochuli (or his staff) to screw up every game he officiates. He’s gone past the game-stealing incomplete pass between the Broncos and Chargers in 2008. He (and his staff) just seem to be making really questionable calls. There were 23 penalties assessed in the game. I would say that no more than 15 of them were actually penalties.
  • Felix Jones — give him the ball! He has been the team’s best running back for the past six weeks, but Marion Barber kept getting majority of the carries. On Saturday, the Cowboys finally kept Barber on the sideline while Jones burned up the Dallas Palace. Thinking in fantasy terms, he’s the runner I like the most out of that situation, but if Jones, Barber and Tashard Choice are around at the start of next season, it will still be tough to trust any of them to be more than a mediocre No. 2 RB on a weekly basis.

    He better be back

  • Flexing after a big play is popular in sports. But you really shouldn’t do that if you don’t have any muscles to display, Michael Vick. That touchdown throw was nice, but Jeremy Maclin did most of the work, you were late on the read, you were lucky that Mike Jenkins slipped on the play and you have arms the size of celery sticks. Stop it.
  • Hopefully you caught some of the college basketball before and during today’s games. There were some absolutely dandies. I’ve got to get in shape for March.
  • It’ll be talked about for the next few months, and especially this upcoming week, but I’ll just say it once: Donovan McNabb is not to blame and the Eagles would be 100 percent retarded to get rid of him.
  • That being said, damn, McNabb looked horrible. He looked old. He looked unprepared. Or maybe Dallas’ defense is just THAT good. It’s a solid defense, but McNabb looked like a scrambling Drew Stanton against the Cowboys.
  • As a New Y0rk Giants fan, it was tough to pull for either the Eagles or the Cowboys, but I decided to root for Philly because I would have loved to see Romo and the ‘Boys lose again, and view Jerry Jones’ reaction — even though his taut face makes him incapable of frowning. But as for next week, I think I am actually going to slightly pull for the Cowboys. That’s how much I’m annoyed by Brett Favre and how the Vikings run their offense. How they ignore Adrian Peterson at times is so infuriating. I said it earlier this week, but if the Vikings intend to play at a 3:1 pass-to-run ratio, they will not win a playoff game. With the way Dallas is playing, Minnesota may not win, regardless.
  • Unrelated to the playoffs, but you know who should be in the postseason? Marshawn Lynch. He doesn’t know how to stay out of trouble in the offseason. I will say the only thing that can be said about that story: TWENTY BUCKS?? HA! Are you kidding me??? This sounds like something The Onion would write. Football player with $19 million contract steals $20. Too good.

Since 2002, the NFL has had at least one of its four wild card weekend games finish with a winning margin of seven points or less. So, stay positive. After two Saturday clunkers, it can only get better on Sunday. But if it doesn’t

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