First off, I apologize for taking time off. I know there are literally ones of you out there waiting for my next rant. Things should be more attentive now that the Feds are off my tail.
Now... anyone taking joy in the Colts loss tonight who isn't a crotchety, incontinent '75 Dolphin is an idiot. Must I remind y'all? -The last time a team went 13-0 and lost their 14th game, they promptly went on to win the SuperBowl (the Broncos). In fact, as a Pats fan, I'm extremely upset that Indianapolis lost today. The Colts are so good, they don't need the further focus that comes along with late-season loss. Hell, I would have been so happy if the Colts went 16-0 and then lost in the playoffs, but now (as absurd as it might sound) they have to be even more favored to win it all.
Let's face it, in the AFC, there's a wonderful Tom Brady/Peyton Manning rivalry developing that's of Bird/Magic-Sox/Yanks proportions. Even if all the experts think the worm has turned and the Patriots would be clear underdogs, who wouldn't want to see a Pats/Colts AFC championship? -Not the television networks. -And I can only imagine Colts fans wanting to definitively get over that hump, not unlike the Red Sox finally beating the Yankees. In fact, many Sox fans can't remember who they beat in the World Series because the win over the Yankees meant so much to them.
Right before last year's Superbowl, a guy in a Patriots jersey walked over to my friend J.T., who was wearing an Eagles hat, extended a pleasant handshake and said "Good Luck." Now, immediately I realized that such good graces are only a product of having won two of the last three SuperBowls. If that was 2001, there clearly would have been some serious shit-talking pre-kickoff from obnoxious Pats fans.
Therefore, maybe my praise of the Colts and promotion of the Brady/Manning rivalry is due mostly to the sportsmanship that three Superbowl wins afford you, but I can't help but look forward to that showdown with respect and admiration.
Yeah, that's right, I am assuming that the Pats win their first two playoff games! Anyone who considers the playoff New England team the same caliber of the regular season, injury-laden team is fooling themselves. Basically, they're going to have the same championship team as last year, minus Rodney Harrison, Romeo Crennel, and Charlie Weis. -The last subtraction being the highest hurdle to overcome.
So cheer as loud as you want today (player-haters in San Francisco's Elixir bar!), but this is not college football, where one loss can destroy your entire season. -This is the NFL playoffs, where one or two (or five) losses can immediately be forgiven with a Superbowl championship.
Also, for the record, I don't buy this "A Perfect Season is better than a Superbowl" bullshit. You mean to tell me going 16-0, but losing in the playoffs is better than winning a championship? -That's a pant-load! The Patriots won 22 games in a row, but is that better than their three Superbowls? -Than one Superbowl? -Not at all!
So to any lamenting Colts fans in need of a long hug (I'm looking at you, Liz), take this time and feel as bad as you want, but don't forget you still clearly have the best team in the league, and nobody wants to play you in the post-season (including me).
As for the NFC, it's the Seahawks and then no one. Jock all you want about the NFC East, but Lawrence Taylor, John Riggins, Tony Dorsett, Harold Carmichael, Art Monk, Phil Simms, and Madden & Summerall aren't going to beat Shaun Alexander and Matt Hasselbeck this year, but there will be some lovely parting gifts for you.