Dear NFL, What the Hell Happened?

Week 17 was supposed to be filled with epic showdowns between teams fighting for their playoff lives. Instead, we were forced to watch high seeds get smashed, fringe contenders lay down, and teams with nothing to play for act as spoilers. This was an absolutely impossible week to predict, even with the help of Vegas oddsmakers and psychics like Miss Cleo.

Even Miss Cleo would have lost money if she bet on the NFL in week 17.

Let’s go:

Tennessee Titans @ Seattle Seahawks, 17-13

I want to start off with the positives. Chris Johnson became just the 6th player in league history to eclipse the 2,000 yard mark on the ground. He rushed for 134 hard-earned yards and 2 touchdowns against a woeful Seattle team. Come to think of it, this is the same Seattle franchise that watched Emmitt Smith become the league’s all-time leading rusher against them back in 2002. At least in that game they came out victorious. In this game, they lost on both fronts. This is Johnson’s second year in the league, and there is a growing consensus among the league that he has also surpassed Adrian Peterson as the NFL’s premier back. Congratulations, CJ; you turned in an incredible season.

New England Patriots @ Houston Texans, 27-34

The Patriots were in control of this game in the first half, only to lose their grip in the second half. Tom Brady and co. watched as their defense got shredded by Matt Schaub and Arian Foster. Schaub threw for 303 yards and 2 touchdowns, while Foster rushed for 119 yards and turned in a pair of touchdowns himself. New England’s offense sputtered, and it didn’t help to lose Wes Welker for the playoffs due to a torn ACL. Seriously, that’s killer for these guys. He’s Brady’s go-to-guy, and not having him in the line-up is going to make Randy Moss’s life absolutely miserable. Welker was the guy who took the pressure off Brady. New England’s offense is extremely pass-heavy due to an atrocious running game, and this puts a gargantuan dent in their efforts to make me a prophet and win the Superbowl, let alone the AFC. They’re going to have trouble beating a feisty Baltimore club when they come to town for Wildcard Weekend. I think the city of Boston is tired of knee injuries(Tom Brady last year, Kevin Garnett last year and this year, Paul Pierce this year, and Wes Welker this year).

Cincinnati Bengals @ New York Jets, 0-37

Since it has become commonplace to question, I will again answer with increasingly annoyed regularity: no, that is not a typo. The Jets placed a shallacking on the Bengals, with their USC quarterback looking sharper than Cincinnati’s. Mark Sanchez wasn’t asked to do much(probably because he’s thrown some 20 interceptions on the year) as the Jets bombarded the Bengals with an abrasive ground attack. They scored a total of 4 rushing touchdowns, accounting for 28 of their 37 points, and kicker Jay Feely did the rest. I am extremely disappointed in Cincinnati. I seriously just picked them as my surprise team of the year less than a week ago, and this is how they repay me. They take a beatdown in the final week of an NFL season. This loss all but assured them a rematch with the Jets next Saturday in the Wildcard round of the playoffs. Whenever you have a chance to put a team out of its misery you do it. You don’t sit starters or show up with an ambivalent mentality. You come out like Tupac singing F*** the World and lay one on them. In the NFL, it’s imperative to respect one’s opponent. Shame on you, Marvin Lewis, for passing up both an opportunity to avoid the Jets the rest of the season and clinch the 3rd seed in the AFC.

Kansas City Chiefs @ Denver Broncos, 44-24

Let me just point out that I predicted that the Broncos would be exactly 8-8. I posted that in a blog that I wrote back in September, but have yet to post on here. This loss has to go on the shoulders of Josh McDaniels. He did a poor job of handling his team the final month of the season, and did a worse job handling the mercurial Brandon Marshall the final week of the season. His ego got the best of him as he called out his star receiver, who is already a well-known basketcase, and benched his pass-catching tight end Tony Scheffler for personal reasons. This is the same Denver team that waltzed into Kansas City and whooped ’em 44-13 on December 6th. Almost one month later, that awful Chiefs team came into Denver and dropped a season-high 44 points before the city knew what hit them. To lose to a good team is understandable; but this was a bad team that beat them. Not only that, but second-year running back Jamaal Charles destroyed their defense, totaling 259 rushing yards and 2 touchdowns. Anyone who attended the game should get a refund courtesy of McDaniels for having to watch such an awful display of effort. The Broncos quit on their head coach.

Green Bay Packers @ Arizona Cardinals, 33-7

I don’t know how much we can take away from this contest because Arizona sat starting quarterback Kurt Warner for most of the game. It become clear to them that it wouldn’t matter given Minnesota simultaneous thrashing of the Giants. So, they gave the majority of reps to backup Matt Leinart. Obviously, this game meant nothing to the Cards. They seemed resigned to playing the Packers two weeks in a row, and did not want to reveal too much of themselves until it’s time to play the game that counts. Credit head coach Ken Wisenhunt for having enough confidence in his players to think they can flip the switch and turn up the intensity in what is sure to be a shootout next Sunday in Arizona. In this game, though, the Packers showed everyone that they are what I thought they were: a very scary football team. They have recently learned how to run the ball with the two-man attack of Ryan Grant and Brandon Jackson, and they have the best quarterback on third-downs in the business. Not only that, but he’s a Republican, too. I knew I liked you, Aaron Rodgers. As far as their defense goes, cornerback Charles Woodson is a virtual lock to win the Defensive Player of the Year award, and it is much deserved.

And on a lighter note, allow me to send my goodbyes to the following:

Pittsburgh Steelers-I am glad to see that you couldn’t even make the playoffs after lucking your way into a 6th Superbowl last year.

Jim Zorn of the Washington Redskins- My sources tell me you’re going to be fired shortly so they can make way for Mike Shanahan(Edit: according to Adam Schefter, Zorn was fired shortly after the team plane landed in D.C.)

Jack Del Rio of the Jacksonville Jaguars- You had a good run, but hit the road, Jack, and don’t ya’…

Matt Hasselback of the Seattle Seahawks- Seattle has to blame someone for three terrible seasons in a row, and who better than a bald guy?

December/January woes for the Dallas Cowboys– You finally nipped that nagging blemish in the bud.

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5 Responses to “Dear NFL, What the Hell Happened?”

  1. Daniel Cool Beans Lee Says:

    I love upsets. They make the world go around.

  2. Shani Says:

    You almost make sports sound interesting 🙂 I liked the Miss Cleo part hehehe

  3. Todd Says:

    Jamaal Charles is actually a 2nd year guy. He was drafted in 2008.

  4. Minnie Says:

    Damn RepubLicans…

  5. Anthony Burrola Says:

    Thanks, I’ll fix that right now.

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