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Sweet, Sweet Sunday!

Talk about flying high.

I mean, what a day. Aside from a Superbowl victory, the only thing that could possibly be sweeter than the Cowboys' humiliating loss in the morning game is the impossible win by the Jets in the late game... and getting both... well, there are no words.

A great day for Brett Favre and all the hornheads up in Minnesota. Jerry Jones and the Cowboys were not merely beaten, they were really most sincerely beaten. Spanked. The Purple Gang outplayed them on offense, defense, special teams, coaching, every way one team can outplay another. Given the fact the the Vikes crushed my beloved Giants in their last regular season team, it was loverly to see them do the same to the Cowboys when it really, really counted. Maybe Minnesota really is that good.

And the Jets game... Keyshawn Johnson was the only one of the talking heads on ESPN who picked them, and so far as I know it was the same on the other networks. No one gave them a chance. Everyone already had the Chargers penciled in to face to Colts for the AFC crown.

Well, here's what I say to that



The Jets/ Chargers game was supposed to be the weekend's biggest blowout, and instead turned out to be the only close contest of the divisional game. Gang Green played some incredible defense, and had just as much offense as they needed. Yes, San Diego contributed mightily to their own demise. The battle-seasoned veteran QB threw twice as many picks as our rookie Mark Sanchez. The running back who stole LT's nickname was a non-factor.

San Diego's bone-headed penalties undermined them repeatedly on offense. The worst was that after-the-play head butt, though all those false starts didn't help (it was their stadium, by rights the Jets should have been the ones false starting). The much-discussed kicking-the-challenge-flag penalty was boneheaded as well, but actually did not hurt much, since San Diego went on to get the touchdown anyway. The three missed field goals were huge.

And the coaching needs to get some of the blame. Norv Turner is already getting roundly criticized for the onsides kick, and justifiably. It was a bad call. But I also think his decision to try and kick a field goal at the end of the first half was a mistake. Kickers are known to be fragile, and Kaeding had already missed one field goal (much shorter)... which had to have awakened ghosts of the one he missed the last time the Jets played the Chargers in the playoffs, a miss that cost San Diego that game. So with time about to expire in the first half, Norv summons him back onto the field to attempt a 57--yarder... when 57 yards was his career long. Too much risk there, for too little reward. When Kaeding missed that one too, it had to have seriously messed with his head. Having missed the first two FGs, he was in no shape to kick the crucial third one near the end of the game... and, indeed, he missed it.

(Parris and I helped as well. Every time Kaeding lined up to attempt a FG, we made hex signs at the screen and yelled BOOGA-BOOGA-BOOGA as he made his approach. We also booga'd the Cowboys kicker in the morning game. Hey, we had a great day with our hexes).

Of course, none of this would have mattered if the Jets had not played so hard. The Chargers stuffed their run for the whole first half, but they never abandoned it. They just kept pounding, pounding, pounding, and finally San Diego cracked and Shonn Green burst through for the crucial touchdown run. Oh, that was sweet.

This is the kind of football I love. Hard-hitting defense, a running game, low score. I'll take that any day over the glorified Madden Game contests like Green Bay/ Arizona.

And now the Jets return to Indianapolis to face the Colts again. Heehah. Talk about irony. Talk about poetic justice. Beware, Dr. Frankenstein. The monster you created is coming back. I hope all your guys are really well rested.

Everyone will pick against the Jets this week too. I wouldn't have it any other way.

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sonsofspartacus
Jan. 18th, 2010 07:47 am (UTC)
I hate the crappy Giants, but I am pulling for your Jets!
arthursimone
Jan. 18th, 2010 07:57 am (UTC)
please do not booga the Saints next week
for it is clear
your mojo rises
jaywood04
Jan. 18th, 2010 08:00 am (UTC)
Great game
Being a Giants fan I thought I was going to be able to watch this game with considerable comfort. Those last five minutes tugged my gut quite a bit and it didn't help that the room was full of nervous jet fans. None of us could believe Norv's decision to onside kick and agreed that his time in San Diego is over. Anyway, congratulations to the Jets and thank goodness we finally got a good game this weekend.

Good luck next week, Jet fans.
liedra
Jan. 18th, 2010 08:17 am (UTC)
I don't know anything about American football but I would hate to be on the receiving end of your hexes, it sounds like they're particularly potent!


(also I would love to be a fly on the wall to see the hexing process, sounds hilarious! :D )
tsgeisel
Jan. 18th, 2010 08:26 am (UTC)
I think it's time for the *other* rematch - Jets/Vikings, as Favre faces his not so old team.
nycfalcon
Jan. 18th, 2010 06:34 pm (UTC)
How's Jay Edwards? If he's not dominant again they won't win.
cleverkid
Jan. 18th, 2010 08:54 am (UTC)
new to the blogscene
as i was rooting for the jets today, i thought of one of my favorite authors doing the same. great running game by the jets, and an excellent secondary also. However i'm afraid it won't last next week, the colts have shown they can stop the run against baltimore, and manning is too smart to throw anything near revis.

maybe if the rookie can actually score in the first half of the game, they'll have a chance : )
axechucker
Jan. 18th, 2010 09:42 am (UTC)
Gang... Greene?
Who knew Shonn Greene had those kinds of afterburners? Stocky little dude was pulling away. I thought I was looking at a shorter version of Michael Turner for a second.

Happily, I was horrible at prognosticating this weekend's games (I was 1-3). My nightmare of a hated Dallas / San Diego Super Bowl is over.

It always amazes me that Rivers doesn't get picked off more. He almost never has any zip on the ball; it always seems as though he throws these long, looping blimp-like passes that take generations to come down.

This does set up well for the Jets. Let me try to think of the last really important game the Jets played against the Colts. Hmm, let me think...

The Super Bowl story is going to be interesting too. You could have any of the following:

Peyton vs. His Dad's Team
QB DUEL - Peyton vs. Favre, i.e. Elway / Marino vs. Montana II
Favre vs. His Team From Last Season

No idea what the storyline will be with Saints / Jets.

I'd watch it though.
olde_scratch
Jan. 19th, 2010 06:10 pm (UTC)
Re: Gang... Greene?
Saints/Jets would be a rematch of the first Jets loss of the season....that's about the only storyline. We just don't have history with the Jets. I like the Jets because they were some of the nicest fans I have met yet in the Dome.
ryans311
Jan. 18th, 2010 10:16 am (UTC)
enjoyed the Jets game
GRRM! You will be happy to know that Michael Strahan picked the Jets! (He also picked the Cowboys, but hey, I'm glad he was wrong on that one)

I'm so sad to see Arizona out of it though... Warner made me the football fan I am, I would hate to see him go.

I was looking forward to this post, and I thought of you when the game ended. I hope you enjoy the rest of the playoffs!
sermelt
Jan. 18th, 2010 12:03 pm (UTC)
yay for hexing - throw some more of that chi around - it's obviously working - much love.
transcendant
Jan. 18th, 2010 01:32 pm (UTC)
As a fan of the Patriots, there's not much worse than a Jets/Colts AFC Championship game...and I think I'm picking the Jets for that one. But this was a great game, and I have enough Jets fans in my (wife's) family that I felt the need to root for them...so congratulations on the win.
camimax
Jan. 18th, 2010 01:39 pm (UTC)
I thought the Jackson kick-the-challenge-flag penalty carried some significance. Though we can't be sure, it possibly ate up more time on the way to the end zone than if the penalty hadn't occurred, and time proved to be significant in preventing SD from getting the ball back at the end. To my mind, Revis' incredible interception was the turning point. You could see that it riled Rivers, and I think that carried through to his next interception. Rivers might have all the physical skills, but his hotheadedness hurts his mental game. I've seen it in games against Pittsburgh (my team)over the years. Since my son's team is Gang Green, I'll be pulling for them the rest of the way. J-E-T-S!
hotclaws
Jan. 18th, 2010 02:02 pm (UTC)
The Jets never gave up and great poise from Sanchez.They might just throw a spanner in the works.
dizzy34
Jan. 18th, 2010 02:04 pm (UTC)
What a crap weekend.
Damn the football gods.
mmc12
Jan. 18th, 2010 02:08 pm (UTC)
Your booga-booga on Nate Kaeding: extremely effective!
eureka00
Jan. 18th, 2010 02:49 pm (UTC)
Saints-Vikings is gonna be an awesome game! I can't wait to watch it. I also was happy to see that most of the ESPN guys were wrong when they picked Dallas and San Diego.
metfansc
Jan. 18th, 2010 03:09 pm (UTC)
On-side Kick
I didn't really disagree with the onside kick myself, it was excellently executed and either way they have to stop the Jets to get the ball back. I would give myself one more shot to get the ball back rather than giving my only shot to stop them on preventing an first down. Turns out that was key as they went for it on 4th down to win the game, but I give my team a shot with the onside kick.

A decision in the game that drove me nuts was the squib kick by Feely after we were up by 10, that was a horrid call by Ryan that could have cost the Jets the game. I hope he learns from that next week.
davidbagby
Jan. 18th, 2010 03:18 pm (UTC)
OOoooooooowwiieeee
Life is miserable and full of pain.

I'm glad your Jets won George, I wince whenever I see a New York team go down because I know that means another Stark is going to bite it somewhere down the line. And if I have to go down to anyone I'm glad it's Favre. I'm tired of all the people ragging on him for his little retirement wafflefest...s. He's a great player and they're a great team. They beat us, and beat us bad, and it was on a sunday so I couldn't really even go drown my sorrows in a barrel of Maredsous.

Ahh well, at least we knocked the Eagles out of it. One nice thing is that I actually like all the teams still in the race. No matter who wins, I'd feel they deserved it. As much as I like Peyton, I do hope the colts go down to the Jets as sweet justice for the way they rolled over at the end of the regular season. It would just be too poetic.
trebla1972
Jan. 18th, 2010 03:20 pm (UTC)
booga booga Jets!
BAH! That was a humiliating loss for my beloved Cowboys. I told myself all season I would just be happy for a playoff win and I got that but getting their butts kicked dampers that now.

I did root for the Jets against the Chargers. Now I'm rooting for Peyton. Go Colts! You brought the Jets into this (playoff) world and now you can take them out!

lowapproach
Jan. 18th, 2010 03:30 pm (UTC)
The Ravens had the best defense in the postseason, and they crumpled beneath the Colts.

Sure, the Ravens had their opportunities: either of Ed Reed's picks, or Ray Rice's great breakout late in the game where he fumbled. But there never came a time where the game was much in doubt.

The small fraction of Colts fans who showed up to the Jets game and didn't get to see the starters? Sorry about that. But it was in every way a sensible decision for one of the toughest AFC playoffs lineups in years, and I think you'll see that when the Jets come to Lucas Oil Stadium with less fire than they brought to the Divisional against San Diego.
dreamsofdawn
Jan. 18th, 2010 03:39 pm (UTC)
I have to agree with you here about the Colts. Defenses win playoff games, and by letting the Jets in, the Colts have to face their worst post-season matchup in perhaps the entire AFC. Peyton is an extremely talented playmaker, but against a defensive line as aggressive as the Jets and Revis always near the ball when it's going deep...I'm picking the Jets for this one.

Then my Saints playing the Vikings...after seeing my team play like that Saturday I have more confidence than ever. As long as our secondary is healthy no one can match Brees scoring. It's been months since we've had Greer and Porter in a game together, with Sharper riding centerfield for INTs. But the Vikings played some tough football too; I lost count of all the forced turnovers they got on the Cowboys. I'm expecting a roller coaster ride in this game, unless the Saints jump to a 14 point lead early. Then we might see Brett "King of Interceptions" Favre.
typotx
Jan. 18th, 2010 03:41 pm (UTC)
Huzzah!
I finally broke down and got an LJ account so I could comment on the games this past weekend. All went as I wished. Four wins for me, as far as I'm concerned.

I have a distinct intense dislike for the Cowboys. I'll pretty much always root for them to lose, and being in Austin, I get a fun week of listening to Pokes fans whine, whine, whine. Heh. I love it. Thanks, Vikes!

I really like Drew Brees. He's a local boy, and local boy does good (very good) is always a nice story. He's a good guy and Nawlins has earned something to cheer about, if anyone has. That's a damn good team.

While my wife adores Peyton Manning, and I merely respect him, dumping the game with the Jets at the end of the season was unforgivable (not his fault, I know--I blame Caldwell). I've been crossing my fingers for the Irony Bowl where the J-E-T-S come in and beat them for realz. And now it's happening. Love it.

So I'm calling it now: Saints (over Vikings 35-23) and Jets (over Colts 21-20) in the Superbowl.
steveoh77
Jan. 18th, 2010 04:16 pm (UTC)
Congrats maybe there is something to your hex
How the Jets got two Pro-Bowl caliber kickers to miss easy field goals is beyond me.

Mayber there is something to your hex? Booga, booga to the Colts!!
dolorousviking
Jan. 18th, 2010 04:41 pm (UTC)
Winter is Coming to New Orleans
Thanks for pulling for the Vikings, which we will count on you to do next Sunday, too. Sure, New Orleans is a great city that has been hit hard, but remember that Minnesota is the North, and we only have two season, "winter" and "winter is coming." Has a sort of Starkian ring to it. The Vikings had player named Tim Starks once.

We'll be cheering for a Jets v Vikings Super Bowl.
evilnioj
Jan. 18th, 2010 04:47 pm (UTC)
nfl
It always gladdens my heart to see you so happy over sport, I think you missed your calling to be a commentator, so I say GO TEAM to whoever it is you support even if I am a brit and don't know the first thing about what you Americans' so laughingly refer to as football.

P.S. Glad you became an author instead!
firerosearien
Jan. 18th, 2010 04:51 pm (UTC)
I still can't believe it.

Of course, when my mother, who's normally as cynical as they come, starts telling me that you never know, the Jets might win...maybe I should start to believe her.
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