Monday, December 08, 2008

NFL

Man, watching that Cowboys game last night was a thing of beauty, wasn't it? It's not often you get to watch an implosion like that on national tv here in New York, I'll tell you that. I mean, a couple of years ago Eli Manning was doing that sort of thing regularly, throwing incredibly foolish picks very late in tight games in the worst possible spots, but it's been a while now. In fact, come to think of it, many of the biggest step-down-in-the-clutch efforts I've seen lately have come from Tony Romo himself.

Now don't get me wrong -- Tony Romo is obviously a great game-day quarterback. Think about it -- while he was in there for the first half of this season, the Cowboys were talked about as a superbowl team. They were winning almost all of their games, and scoring a ton of points and a whole mess of touchdowns in doing so. Then Romo went down, and with Brad Johnson and some other clown in there as the backups, the team was bad. Far beyond merely bad in fact. They were completely ineffective on offense, and it even made the defense look pretty crappy to tell the truth. Then what, four weeks ago, Romo comes back and the team immediately goes on another winning streak. The guy can move the ball and see the field far better than the average NFL quarterback, and he knows how to make the best of his considerable options on offense down in Dallas.

But that said, Tony Romo is amassing quite a history of stepping down in the clutch. Of course we all remember the flubbed hold of the field goal that ended Dallas's season a couple of years ago, I believe against the Eagles, and of course there was the horrible game replete with a bunch of interceptions that he came up with to end last year for the 'Boys with his girlfriend Jessica Simpson in the stands. And now you can add this past Sunday afternoon to the list. The Cowboys were up 10 with 7 mintues to go against the Pittsburgh Steelers, and the Steelers managed to tie it up with two minutes left after a great punt return and a big drive combined with some stellar defensive stops. With the game tied at 13, Romo comes out to lead his team to victory, only something happened on the way to that game-winning field goal -- he threw a pick to a wide-open Steeler defensive back who ran it in for the game-winning touchdown instead. So sweet.

My Eagles also put a hurtin to the NFC-best New York Giants, but I'm not getting too excited about that one. After the tie with the hapless Bengals, I gave up hopes of the Eagles going anywhere serious this season, but what was interesting to me about the Eagles-Giants game this weekend was how listless the Giants looked on offense. I don't mean to make too big of a deal about it, but I really believe the loss of that idiot Plaxico Burress is a big blow to the Giants' chances of going back-to-back this year. It's not so much that Plax's four touchdowns and 30-some receptions are themselves that huge of a loss to the team's overall production numbers, but rather that his mere presence on the outside or coming across the middle every play is enough to draw double-teams, or at least the noticeable attention, of the opposing defense on mostly every snap of the ball. Now, all that is lost, and the result was an Eagles team that has looked very beatable on defense for most of this season but who on Sunday made the Giants look pretty dam ordinary on their side of the ball.

So I think the loss of Plaxico definitely brings the Giants back to the rest of the field a little bit, but right now I still see them as the favorite to repeat in the NFC. I don't think the Cardinals or anyone in that joke of a division known as the NFC North has the chops to take them on, but I suppose either of the balanced offense/defense attacks in Tampa Bay or Carolina might be able to make some troubles for them in the playoffs, although as I said I still see the Giants as the front-runners in the NFC right now. And on the AFC side, I had been leaning towards the New York Jets until a couple of weeks ago, but now they have been exposed as just what I thought they were at the beginning of the season -- just not a very good team. Right now I don't see how anyone can pick against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Their defense is so stifling, so incredibly awesome, that it's one of those rare situations like the Ravens of some years ago where you almost feel as good about the defense's ability to score points and spark the offense as you do about the offense's. Mike Tomlin has proven to be a very good coach, especially for such a young guy, and right now if I had to pick, I would say we are heading for a Pittsburgh - Giants superbowl matchup early in 2009.

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6 Comments:

Blogger Bayne_S said...

The Cowboys are 4-7 with Tony Romo at QB in December over last 3 seasons.

And he is good for one turnover every game where you are left scratching your head

1:19 AM  
Blogger DuggleBogey said...

I think you're revising history. The Cowboys started losing and looked incredibly inept on offense BEFORE Romo got injured.

Look it up.

3:19 AM  
Blogger DuggleBogey said...

Plus he fumbles the ball if you look at him funny.

3:19 AM  
Blogger Memphis MOJO said...

The fumbled snap was against Seattle.

4:03 AM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

I do love watching that guy fumble the ball, that is certainly true.

But that INT last night in the final 2 minutes still has me confused. Witten tried to take the blame for running the wrong route right after the pick, but there is no way that ball was being caught by anyone but the Steeler defender he threw it directly to, no matter what route Witten was running. It was like Romo looked up, saw Witten, and then promptly threw the ball a full ten yards further downfield.

4:09 AM  
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8:43 AM  

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