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Super Bowl XLIX: Revisited (Update)

Well, it has only been a week. It seems longer. Super Bowl!!! The New England Patriots versus the Seattle Seahawks. Russell Wilson versus Tom Brady. Legion of Boom. Revis. Edelman. Matthews!! In the end, it was a perfect game to end a perfectly wacky play-off season.

As a whole, I think most people would say the game unfolded kind of like we thought it would. Most people thought it was going to be a close game. Most people thought that the New England Patriots offense would find a way to move the ball through short passing and by using their nearly uncoverable tight end Gronkowski. On one side of the ball, most experts thought that the Seattle Seahawks would have a hard time running the ball but should have been able to make some plays down the field.

For the most part, this game was a chess match between two master coaches. The Seattle Seahawks were able to stop the run without difficulty. Unfortunately, they were extremely vulnerable to short passes. At key points of the game, Ron Gronkowski and Edelman were able to get open and really burn the Legion of Boom (over 320 yrds on the ground). At the same time, Tom Brady made two critical mistakes which killed drives. Interceptions. Tom Brady never throws critical intercerptions; well, almost never. It was surprising. On the other side of the ball, for nearly the first 25 minutes of the game, the Seattle Seahawks continued to try to ram the ball through the Patriots without success. Their third-down efficiency was abysmal.

Before I spend a lot of time talking about “the play” it should be mentioned that Pete Carroll did decide not to kick a field goal with six seconds on the clock and the ball at the New England 11-yard line at the end of the 1st half. Instead, he instructed Russell Wilson to throw a high back shoulder bullet to Chris Matthews, a previously unheard of wide receiver for the Seattle Seahawks. It was a brilliant play. Touchdown. The game was tied at half-time.

Now, the play. The Seattle Seahawks have miraculously moved the ball from their own 35-yard line down inside the New England one-yard line. With 26 seconds on the clock, the Seattle Seahawks have one timeout.

New England versus Seattle

If you’re sitting around wondering what really makes NFL football great, it is plays like this. The complexity of football is sometimes mind-boggling. On the other hand, it is really a simple game. It is about putting that stupid football into the end zone.

Continue reading Super Bowl XLIX: Revisited (Update)

NFL: Super Bowl Sunday

Well, it’s Super Bowl Sunday. I’m not gonna bore you with a long, drawn out analysis. There are literally hundreds of places that you can go in order to get long, drawn out analyses. ESPN, NFL network and a host of other websites and television stations have been broadcasting nonstop nonsense for over a week. Let’s cut to the chase – the Seattle Seahawks will figure out a way to beat the New England Patriots and win their second Super Bowl title in two years.

Dallas Cowboys – Week 6

cowboys win

Well, well, well. The Dallas Cowboys are 5-1. Who would’ve thought? I famously predicted (famous in my own mind) that the Dallas Cowboys were going to go 2-14 this year. With a historically bad defense last year and the losses of DeMarcus Ware and Sean Lee, I couldn’t see the Dallas defense being better. Last year, their offense was good, but not great. You can never count on anything positive from the offense. Oh, and add to that an absolutely abysmal preseason.

Fast forward to now. The Dallas Cowboys have to go to Seattle to play the Super Bowl champs. Let’s understand that the Super Bowl champs aren’t the team that they were last year. They’re having some issues. They need wide receivers who can separate and catch the ball. They need another playmaker besides Percy Harvin. Yet, they still have a stout defense. They still have Russell Wilson. I remember just two years ago when the Dallas Cowboys went to Seattle and got shredded early in the season. It was the first time I had an opportunity to see Russell Wilson. I wasn’t dazzled by anything that he did but at the same time, he really didn’t make any mistakes. That is probably the hallmark of Russell Wilson’s game. He may not dazzle you with outstanding throws and arm strength, but at the same time he doesn’t really make any mental mistakes. During that game, the Dallas Cowboys took control early only to have a punt blocked and a couple of key turnovers to seal the game for Seattle.

On Sunday, the Dallas Cowboys had plenty of opportunities to roll over and play dead. They did not. They spotted the Seattle Seahawks 10 points. Through sheer grit and determination the Dallas Cowboys scored the next 17 points. They were in control of the game. Dwayne Harris fumbled a punt, giving Seattle not only momentum, but seven points. The very next drive, the Seattle fans were going crazy. The Dallas Cowboys were deep in their own end of the field, Tony Romo frantically trying to signal his receivers. The center snapped the ball. The ball bounced off of Tony Romo’s leg into the hands of a waiting Seattle defender. Another three points for the Seahawks. Normally, this would lead to Tony Romo trying to fit the ball into an impossibly small window, which would lead to an interception. For some reason, that didn’t happen.

Instead, we saw a remarkable sequence of plays. On a third and long, deep in our own end of the field, Tony Romo throws a back shoulder fade to Dez Bryant who leaps up and grabs the ball over Richard Sherman. First down. A couple of plays later, the Dallas Cowboys have it third and long, again. We’re in the fourth quarter. The Seattle fans are going nuts. Tony Romo goes back to throw and gets immediate pressure off of his left side. He spends out of pressure only to have to avoid another defender in his face. He scrambles to his right. He throws about a 30-yard pass and appears to have overthrown Jason Witten, but the ball lands in Terrence Williams’ hands. Williams makes one of the best catches I’ve seen by a Dallas Cowboy in years. He drags both of his feet as he is falling out of bounds. Magnificent play. Then, the Dallas Cowboys don’t forget how to run the football. In the past, when we were down in the fourth quarter, we would always throw the ball, throw the ball, and then throw the ball some more. Instead we handed the ball to DeMarco Murray. He breaks it for 25 yards. Next play, DeMarco Murray off the right tackle for 6 yards. Now, in my opinion, one of the most remarkable things was when the Dallas Cowboys run the ball again. DeMarco Murray runs right, cuts it back left in his head at the 2-yard line by Richard Sherman. He carries Richard Sherman into the end zone for a 15-yard run and a touchdown. That was the game.

What is remarkable to me is the toughness the Dallas Cowboys have shown on both offense and defense. The Dallas Cowboys have shown not just physical toughness but also mental toughness.

No, I have not jumped on the Dallas Cowboys bandwagon. The Dallas Cowboys have torn my heart out on a number of occasions over the last 15 years. Right now, I’m just gonna sit back and smile. (Let’s see how we do at the end of the season. Let’s beat Philadelphia.)