BEHIND ENEMY LINES: MORNING AFTER IN NEW ENGLAND
My son goes to school in Boston, right down the street from the area that Mayor Mumbles Menino had locked down last night in anticipation of post-Super Bowl celebratory hi-jinks. We told him to say put in his dorm if the Pats won. Local news showed Kenmore Square an hour after the Patriots went down in flames, and there was nary a soul in sight, save for a few young Giants fans, strutting their stuff and commandeering the Channel 5 cameras.
The apple not falling far from the tree, my boy on his Facebook posted something on the order of “The only thing close to a Steelers win is a Patriots loss.” To which, one of his swim buddies, posted, “I seriously hate you right now.” Another said, “Remember losing to the Packers in last year’s Super Bowl?” to which my kid responded, “Remember the Steelers WINNING six Super Bowls?”
Anyway, as I posted last week, part of my aging process is leaving the angst and negative energy to the younger generation and trying to not be consumed with the thoughts of the Patriots winning the Super Bowl. My in-laws, young and old would be happy. The guy that owns the gas station down the street, who is nice to me about the Steelers, would be happy. The local district court judge, who is nice to me about the Steelers, would be happy. But y’know what!! Hell with them!! I was rooting hard for the Giants last night, and when the final Hail Mary fell incomplete, I couldn’t suppress an ear-to-ear grin and catcalls directed toward Belichick, Brady, et al.
FWIW (and likely not much), some thoughts about last night’s Super Bowl:
*The Duct Tape Defense of the New England Patriots came home to roost late in last night’s 4th quarter. All year long, the redeeming quality of this 32nd ranked defense had been their middle-of-the-pack standing in points allowed. You can’t put that bunch of castoffs and misfits on the field with four minutes left, in a spot where a field goal beats them. THAT was too much to expect.
*Which leads to the impact of the Welker drop.I didn’t feel bad for The Pompous Robert Kraft, despite the attempts of NBC to cast him as the mourning widower post-game. Had one of the Rooney wives similarly passed (and for all we know, they might have), you would never see a national spectacle made of it. I certainly don’t feel bad for Brady & Belichick. I do feel bad for Wes Welka. He’s a tough little shit, and I’ll never forget, after he was laid out by Ryan Clark in ’08 and the New England media wanting to crucify Clark, Welker saying it was a good hit. If there’s such a thing as crying without tears, that was Wes Welker post-game last night. Had he made that catch though, worst-case scenario for the Pats is they’re running the clock down to the 2-minute warning, kicking a FG to go up 5 points, and Giants having two minutes, no timeouts, to drive the length of the field for a winning touchdown. Other irony? Welker was targeted 8 times…made 7 catches. He does catch what’s thrown his way…except for…
*In the same vein of the Patriots defense, it’s been widely stated on New England talk radio this morning that the pass to Manningham was an unstoppable perfect catch-throw by Giants, and was well-defended by the Patriots. Not so, says Herm Edwards, on Mike & Mike this morning. Herm was fired up, saying with trips on Manningham’s side, Scrap Heap Sterling Moore didn’t need to worry about a slant, and his only responsibility was not to allow Manningham to walk the rail (something about rail, meaning sideline). It was his top priority, said Edwards, to jam Manningham to the inside, not allowing him access to the sideline. Once Manningham had the sideline, safety help was about 14 yards away. Too far; too late!!
*More on the defense. Whither Julian Edelman? After all the pre-game hubbub, we didn’t see #11 on the defensive side. We hardly saw him, if at all, on the offensive side either.
*Give Belichick this. The standard intel has been that he will take away the one guy that he doesn’t want to have beat him. And to that effect, he more or less took away Victor Cruz (4 catches, 25 yards?).
*Much is being made of the Time of Possession difference of 37 minutes to 23 minutes. Almost all of that though, was the 1st quarter, and the impact of the Patriots initial one-play possession ending in a safety.
*Brady’s bomb to Gronk that was picked was reminiscent to Brady’s long pick in the AFCCG. He didn’t survive this one though. Speaking of Brady and the long-ball, I forget the standard exactly, but Brady down the field (maybe 13 yards, maybe 20 yards) in the last two Super Bowls now stands at ZERO for 13.
*Did Jason Pierre-Paul’s rush on the final Hail Mary remind anyone else of Lamarr Woodley’s rush on Warner in the same spot in SB XLIII, causing a Warner fumble to end the game?
There’s some advantage to being old and the boss of your work place (‘course, I’ve been in that spot since I was 30 years old), and one of them is my being able to keep my computer tuned to New England Talk Radio all day. First, there’s the twin douchebags Dennis & Callahan in the morning (Dennis is a Pittsburgh native), then Gresh & Zo midday (both Western Pa. natives), and then the morons Felga & Mazzerotti (I refuse to call him Maz) to end the day. I’m going to enjoy it.
Day After Behind Enemy Lines!!