Sunday, February 1, 2009

Fourth Quarter Fireworks Deliver 6th Super Bowl Ring

I’m glad that the refs called (correctly) the holding penalty in the endzone that helped extend the game for Arizona. Had that call not been made, then the hoots and hollers on radio this week would be unbearable: “The NFL is no better than the NBA!” “How come they love the Steelers so much?”

True, the drive in the 3rd quarter which was almost exclusively powered by personal fouls, was a joke.

Santonio Holmes nearly pops the lid off Rodgers-Cromartie with a direct facemask, while Cromartie barely touches Holmes’ grill. I still have no idea why the NFL doesn’t re-write that rule which allows offensive players to intentionally facemask a defender under the guise of it being merely an “old school” stiff arm. The roughing calls on Big Ben and the stupid holder were a joke too.

Yet, in the end that series only led to 3 points. It didn’t change the game.

Much of the other calls against Arizona were simply correct. Mike Gandy was having trouble all night. A pull on the jersey of Hines ward that is clearly visible, is a penalty. Period.

I will not entertain any notions that the Cardinals were screwed in this game. They were simply unlucky.

Especially on the 14 point swing that occurred on a fluke-of-nature play for the ages by James Harrison to end the first half.

I mean, what can you do about that? Nothing. Sh** happens.

I only got a little bit right about this game. As usual, I was dead wrong all over the place. First, the good.

Arizona was indeed, one dimensional. I got that part right.

But it didn’t matter. Warner was awesome. Even better when they went to the no-huddle late in the game. Maybe Todd Haley should have opened the game in the no huddle.

The crowd wasn’t nearly as pro-Pittsburgh as I thought it would be. When the Cardinals surged late, the crowd seemed to rise up in a way that said: “We’re only here on a corporate junket, and not real Cards fans, but screw this terrible towel shit!”

Darnell Dockett and the Cardinals defense owned the line of scrimmage as the game wore on, and I really thought they were the team that deserved to win.

But as Clint Eastwood said in the movie Unforgiven: “Deservin’ ain’t got nothin’ to do with it.”

Big Ben and the Steelers made the drive that mattered. Santonio Holmes made the catch that will live forever in Super Bowl lore with about a half dozen others.

As such, they deserve it, because they won. And won clean. That’s a great team, born of an even greater organization. With a 27 year old quarterback who has two rings, a nasty defense, a young and respected coach.

Forecast: continued excellence. Deal with it, people.

The Steelers have already started cracking on that second hand full of rings. Nobody else in the league can claim that. The Cowboys and Niners are stuck on five each. And I seriously doubt either one of them, will get their 6th, before the Steelers get their 7th.

Thanks for a great show, fellas. The years of blowout Super Bowls seems like such ancient history. I think we’re getting spoiled.

I think the next professional tackle football game is September 5th. Or thereabouts. Grab a Snickers, and try not to cry.


We’ll Never Really Know

If Holmes toes were really, truly, undoubtedly DOWN DOWN before he was pushed out. It was so close, and for all of the King’s magical camera angles, only one really seemed to confirm the call. The others left some margin of doubt.

Were They In A Rush?

How on earth can the replay booth not take a good, long, hard, serious look at the last fumble (incomplete?) by Kurt Warner? To just rush ahead, and pull the plug on the football game, didn’t look for feel right. To me, that play was as much an awkward incomplete as the previous Warner play which was overturned. Maybe the NFL wanted to spare McCauley and his crew the indignity of being the first Super Bowl crew over-ruled by replay THREE times in a single game.

Al Michaels Is Not A Play By Play God

Go back and watch the call on the Fitzgerald touchdown. Listen to Al. LISTEN closely. He makes all big calls with announcer “constipation” in his voice. Like he’s pushing the words out of a tight hole. Al was also very confused, late, and sometimes dead wrong on the calls as they were made on the field. I think this is because Al is always trying to hard to show the viewer how smart he is on stuff. Rules, stats, and what not. Re-focus on the basics. Tell us what just happened. Sort out the rest later.

And Madden Was Even Worse

I still don’t know why supposedly “smart” NFL fans/writers treat this tired stooge as some sort of sage. Two points that were idiotic. First one came on the Harrison touchdown, where he said (essentially) “If a guy makes a play that good, you have to give him a touchdown as long as it was close.” Huh? Actually, I think you should make the call based on what the replay shows, and what the rule is. Period. Then Madden said he thought Harrison should be THROWN OUT for a marginal personal foul call on that punt in the 4th. Are you kidding? This is football, not chess. It’s rough.

Scared Money, Don't Make Money
The defensive call that allowed the Fitzgerald touchdown was typical NFL-think. “Just don’t lose the game.” “Just keep them out of the endzone, and we win. Thank god we are up by 4 points, not just 3!” I thought Dick LeBeau was better than that. I thought he didn’t play coward-ball on defense with all the chips on the table. I was wrong.

Commercial Review

In a nutshell: mediocre. But perhaps that’s just the national mood right now, having spent ourselves into a near financial apocalypse. I still greatly enjoyed the spot with Alec Baldwin. And for whatever reason, seeing a fake koala bear getting his glasses punched off his face made me chortle like jolly ol’ St. Nick. Oh yeah, and the flowers in the box saying “nobody wants to see you naked” was classic. How many trucks bit the dust before they figured out how to have one pull a huge load up that spiral metal corkscrew rig thingy with the flame shooters at the top. Awesome! Oh yeah, it’s also official: Danica Patrick is a whore. Just show us your tits already in Playboy, and get it over with.

1 comment:

  1. Czabe,

    In regards to the personal foul calls and your comments that they were a joke. I agree the roughing the passer call on Big Ben was ticky-tacky and shouldn't have been called. However, the other two unsportsmanlike penalty calls were correct. The rules clearly state a player running with the ball is allowed to stiff arm to the face. If anyone else grabs a face mask, it's a penalty, period, no iffs, ands or buts. While the rule may need changing, as you suggest, the official was correct in flagging Arizona.

    I am perplexed that you say the roughing the holder penalty was a joke. He clearly was plowed over. Had the same happened to the kicker, you'd have no problem saying it was a roughing penalty. The same protection afforded a kicker is granted to the holder on FG/PAT attempts. Hence, again, the officials made the correct call.

    You make not like the rule, but don't bash the officials for correctly doing their jobs.