Sunday, January 16, 2011

1/16 Quickie: Rodgers, Ben, Jets-Pats

Here's some "realtalk": Aaron Rodgers' performance yesterday was better than any single game Brett Favre had for the Packers.

It wasn't just the finest performance by a QB in the history of the Packers franchise (oh, Starr fans, fine: In the ESPN Era), but it was one of the greatest performances by a QB in NFL Playoff history.

It was sublime to watch (and to follow on Quickish, if you did -- and you still can!) -- a QB playing about as well as you can witness one play, under any conditions, let alone a road game against the top conference seed coming off a restful bye week.

Rodgers was already a great QB -- top tier in the NFL, along with Brady, Manning and, this season, Vick. But a game like that on a stage like this elevates him to superstar status.


After watching that insanely intense Steelers-Ravens game, it seems crazy to think that it would end up the second-biggest storyline of the day, but that's how good Rodgers was.

...And how bad the Ravens' offense was in the 2nd half, even as its defense faltered just enough -- let's call it one insane 70-yard play on 3rd-and-19 late in the 4th quarter -- to let a win slip away. The offense, with its free-agent WR drops and its Flacco-ness, made it worse.

The Ravens should have won. They didn't. Even allowing that beating Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh in the playoffs is no easy task, that makes Baltimore an unlikeable loser. No moral victories here.


Pats vs. Jets: The cover of the NY Post today is outrageous -- they fully embrace the crazy, and I love it. I am no fan of the Pats -- although I love Belichick -- and I find myself enjoying the Ryan-led bluster of the Jets, who should be considered massive underdogs. I would like nothing more than the Jets to win -- not quite as much as I wanted the Giants to beat the then-unbeaten Pats in the Super Bowl, but certainly enough to be on the "rooting for Jets" side. Too bad they're going to get drilled.


It is a complete mis-read by NFL "experts" to think that Seattle making -- and hosting -- the NFC championship game would be bad for the NFL, some sort of mockery or sham. On the contrary, casual and ("non-") fans would absolutely love it, and it would only increase attention on the league from more of the country, as everyone embraces the "Cinderella."

Most of the country couldn't care less that the Seahawks are under .500 -- in fact, that's part of the charm. It's like calling Cinderella "mediocre" and insisting she isn't worthy of going to the ball unless she puts on superficially fancy clothes.

I grew up a huge -- HUGE -- Bears fan. And it was in DC, so I took a fair amount of grief from my friends, who were ALL Redskins fans. But I find myself rooting for this unique Seahawks story to continue, all the way to a home game back in Seattle with a Super Bowl bid on the line.


*Carmelo jerseys are 50% off at the Nuggets team store: Make of that what you will.

*Albert Pujols wants a new deal by the time spring training starts: And? Why won't the Cards pay the guy the rate he has earned -- and deserves? He's an all-time Top 10 player.

*Enjoy the games today. Even (or especially) if you're watching the games on TV, please drop by Quickish during the games for the best "live" accompaniment of big sports events you'll find.

-- D.S.

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