Divisional Round Review

January 13, 2009

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Divisional Round Review


The crystal ball had a dreadful performance this past week, posting a woeful 1-3 record.  This is playoff time, so that is totally unacceptable!  The crystal ball started off 1-0, but then dropped its last three for the weekend!  Anyway, that puts the crystal ball at 3-5 for the post-season, and 36-31-1 overall.  That’s five games over .500 (.537 to be exact).  Hopefully the crystal ball will perform better this coming week, as the pressure mounts in the Championship games!  Let’s take a look back, and review what happened last week.


Last Week: 1-3


Playoffs: 3-5

Overall:  36-31-1


Baltimore @ Tennessee:  (WIN)  This was a classic defensive struggle.  Both teams did rack up some yards, especially the Titans (391).  That’s a lot of yards against the Ravens defense, but the name of the game is to score points.  The Titans had their share of opportunities, but they didn’t get the job done!  The Titans had the edge in yards and time of possession, but the three turnovers they committed sealed their fate!  The Ravens offense wasn’t great, but it doesn’t need to be.  They played tough, hard-nosed football, and Flacco managed the offense.  More importantly…he had no turnovers.  In the playoffs, it’s hard to win when you lose the turnover battle.  The Ravens will travel to Pittsburgh for the AFC title.


Arizona @ Carolina:  (LOSS)  What the (bleep) was Jake Delhomme doing out there?  He had five picks…are you kidding me?  He sure picked the wrong week to have the worst day of his life!  The Panthers looked sharp on their first scoring drive, but then they must have gotten amnesia, because the entire team forgot how to play football!  Goodell…test the Gatorade!  Arizona, led by the geriatric kid (Warner) played well.  Once they got the lead, they never looked back.  Even without Boldin, the Cards offense was unstoppable.  The Cardinals will now host the NFC Championship game…I can’t believe I just typed that!


Philadelphia @ New York Giants:  (LOSS)  The Eagles were firing on all cylinders.  The offense had its moments, but played well enough to win.  The Birds defense stole the show though.  They harassed Eli all day long, even though they didn’t register any sacks.  The pressure was there, and Manning was off his game and threw two costly picks!  The Giants played with no heart whatsoever…they looked like a deer in headlights.  Dawkins was all over the field and he has been the motivation behind the Eagles success on defense.  That guy is a baller…even at his ripe old age!  The Eagles might have needed a lot of breaks to get into the tournament, but they sure are making the most of their opportunity.  The Birds will fly west to meat up with the Cardinals for the NFC title.


San Diego @ Pittsburgh:  (LOSS)  The Steelers are simply the most consistent team in the NFL.  They come to play each week.  They ran the ball well, and Big Ben had a good day as well.  Ben didn’t light it up, but when you can run the ball and your defense is the best in the league, you don’t have to…just avoid the mistakes!  The Bolts kept it close, and they rallied to make it interesting late, but they never really had a chance.  Rivers tried to carry the team on his back, but it was just too much of a burden on him…he misses LT’s production!  Sproles was a non-factor in the running game, as Pittsburgh held him to 15 yards on 11 carries…ouch!  The Steelers now have a date with the Ravens for the AFC Championship.  They have defeated the Ravens twice this season, but can they make it thrice?


Short Shots:


Yesterday, Tony Dungy retired from coaching after a 7-year run in Indy.  He has turned that franchise into a winner.  He never got his Lombardi Trophy in Tampa, but he made it happen in Indy.  His coaching career will surely land him in Canton, but Dungy will be remembered more for his work that doesn’t deal with football.  If you get the chance…read his book!


The Eagles are flying high with their Super Bowl run, but I have to say I am disappointed with Donovan McNabb.  What was he thinking of when he picked up the telephone on the Giants sideline?  If that were Terrell Owens or Pacman Jones, Goodell would have suspended them by now.  D-Mac…you know better, don’t you?


From The Mail Room:


Nate S., Glenside, PA: Are you surprised to see both of the 6 seeds make it this far in the play offs?

Utopia1dc:  Nate, no I’m not really that surprised.  The Eagles are playing very well.  I didn’t surprise me that they could beat Minnesota and the G-Men on the road.  The Vikings are an average team, and the Giants aren’t the same without Plaxico.  As for the Ravens, they are a very dangerous team.  The Ravens may have been a 6th seed, but they were 11-5 on the season.  Two of their five losses came at the hands of the Steelers.  The Ravens also have a rookie coach and QB, but they sure aren’t acting like rookies!  The Ravens will give the Steelers all they can handle.  It wouldn’t surprise me at all to see both 6th seeds advance to the Super Bowl either!


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