Home > Uncategorized > A Super Column about a Super Bowl…

A Super Column about a Super Bowl…

So, there’s this little game of football this weekend, which I think you might have heard of. Given the importance of this game, I’m sure you’re wondering why I’ve spent all week writing about hoops? Honestly? It’s mostly because all the Super Bowl hype makes me feel a little like Tiger after a quick drive with Elin (or is that from Elin…?).

I mean, for two weeks we have been inundated with articles by writers who are too busy glad handing former athletes, D-level celebrities and fame seeking women to actually write something coherent and intelligent about football. The whole thing is a deluge of drivel, with the limited pieces of intelligent analysis lost amongst the rubbish like tears in rain.

Now, an intro like that suggests that I’m about to expel some salient words of Super Bowl wisdom, but you, my four loyal readers, know better. If you want to read someone break apart the game, analyzing positional battles, debating whether New Orleans can run against the Colts D, or how Gregg Williams’ blitz schemes will affect Peyton Manning then read the excellent work of Football Outsiders. I don’t really have a lot to add to that, and I certainly don’t have any of those fancy graphs, so… instead I’ll talk about the game generally.

I’m torn about who I will cheer for. Like most neutral observers, I’m moved by the story of the Saints. Hardcore New Orleans’ lifers, like James “Just measure my penis and let me on the plane” Carville speak eloquently about what the Saints have meant to New Orleans as it rebuilds after Katrina. A victory for the team would bring real jubilation to a city that has had more than its share of pain and suffering. Given that the restoration of the city is far from a finished project and that the world’s attention has long passed on to other calamities, bringing the citizens a reason to celebrate and reminding outsiders of the devastation felt in New Orleans would be an important step in the city’s convalescence.

On the other hand, as you know, I am always a fan of witnessing greatness. For me, the best part of sports is watching a player or team so in command of the game that they control it the way Neo controlled fights in the Matrix films. Watching Jordan defy gravity as he flew towards the basket, using inhuman body control to contort in mid air, transfer the ball to the other hand, and gently lay it in on the opposite side of the hoop; Watching Gretzky from the back of the net, playing with some poor defender like a cat with yarn, until he finally sees something nobody else sees, and before you or the opposing goalie knows it, the pucks is in the back of the net. Watching Pujols wait on his pitch, watch him take, take, foul, foul, and then watching his eyes explode, his hands whip through the zone, the little stick he wields connect with the ball, and his extension driving it 500 feet away; Watching Tiger deftly approach a waitress in a restaurant 2,000 miles away from his wife… Masters of their craft at the top of their game.

Which brings me to the reason I may be cheering for the Colts… Peyton Manning is playing this little old game of football better than anyone I’ve ever seen. Now, obviously I never saw Otto Graham, Johnny Unitas, or Bart Starr, but I have seen Dan Marino, John Elway, Steve Young, Troy Aikman, Brett Farve, Tom Brady, and, most importantly, Joe Montana. Before this year I would have said that of the guys I’ve watched play quarterback, Peyton was probably fourth (Joe, Elway, Brady, him), but the command of the game that he has shown this year is otherworldly. He is turning first year receivers into stars, he is calling all of the plays, he is figuring out ways to break down defenses in the first quarter and then destroying them the rest of the game, and he’s still convincing opposing teams that the Colts might run, when they haven’t had a 100 yard back since Moses was parting the Red Sea. We are watching greatness and with a victory in this game I believe Peyton would firmly entrench his name into the discussion of the NFLs all time best quarterback.

Don’t worry however, I’m not planning on being a sports bigamist, when the gloves drop I’ll know which force is pulling on me more. I’ve long maintained that if you’re unclear of where your loyalties lie, the fastest way to know is to watch the game. If one team scores and you instinctively cheer, well, then, you know your answer. If both teams score and you don’t cheer for either, well then you’re a neutral observer. Now, if both teams score and you cheer each time, well, then you’re just a bandwagon jumping knob.

I know what you’re saying, enough about cheering, columns like this are for picking games… which brings me to the other reason I couldn’t write this column until today. I couldn’t offer my prediction until I’d finished ironing out my Super Bowl bet with my old friend T-Bone. I couldn’t have T-Bone reading my prediction and using that to force me into better odds. But yesterday we finally finished haggling over our points (I’m giving him 3.5 to take the Saints), so it’s time for me to make a prediction. Remember if I were any good at prognosticating, I’d be living in Vegas, spending my time in an office with a guy named Vinny and eating $1.00 steaks for lunch every day. Instead I’m here flipping patties and adding pickles to your cheeseburgers, so… don’t take this to the bank or anything.

This game will either be a blowout for the Colts, or tight. I doubt New Orleans has the defensive chops to blow out the Colts and for all of the Colts dominance this year, they rarely destroyed teams, so close seems the safer route. A tight high scoring game will benefit the Saints, who have a quick strike offense that if it gets in a rhythm will be hard for the hobbled Colts defense to stop. On the other hand, if the Saints don’t score from forty yards out, then they stagnate in the red zone. And, as I noted above, I believe that Peyton has ascended to the point of greatness, where he controls a football like nobody I’ve never seen.

I think Peyton throws three touchdown passes, the Colts run for another and they kick two field goals. On the other side, I think that Drew Brees leads the Saints to three scores, but that the offence bogs down in the red zone three times and that the Saints are forced to kick three field goals. Both teams score six times, but add it all up and it spells a 34-30 Colts victory. Not a resounding victory, but enough for Peyton to have his second Super Bowl and enter into that greatest QB ever conversation, and, more importantly, just enough for me to cover and finally win a bet with T-Bone.

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  1. Your bro
    February 9, 2010 at 6:09 am

    Can’t wait to hear the follow up on your missed prediction

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