Sunday, January 18, 2015

Championship Sunday

I don't know what it is. Maybe it's the teams in question. Maybe it's what the NFL has become. Maybe it's Roger Goodell.

Maybe it's none of the above, or all of the above.

Yet I can't remember ever being less interested in a Sunday of conference championship games.

Don't get me wrong. I'll watch. I care, of course.

Is it that I'm in a house of people who have ZERO interest in these games? Could be. I halfheartedly reached out to people to see if they wanted company and got tepid interest, or laughter*.

*I'm officially launching a campaign to see if anyone would enjoy watching the game that is known as being slightly super but could be called "Goodell's Folly" with me. I don't take up much space and will speak when spoken to.

There is something to be said about watching a game with friends and food, though the downside of that is the orgy that Super Bowl Sunday has become (are we allowed to say that?). Indeed that is now a day in which football is a foolish byproduct of Katy Perry, commercials, red carpets, and vapid celebrities**.

**I had a great follow-up comment written here about people fawning over celebs. I'm trying to keep things in the vault so I deleted it. Yay me.

There's no doubt that I'm down on the NFL due to the stupid passing rules and the fact that you can't breathe on a quarterback or receiver without drawing a yellow flag. I miss the balanced game of the 70s into the early 80s before Bill Walsh and the **yawn** "West Coast Offense" turned the game into Joe Montana threw the ball three yards to Jerry Rice, and Rice did the rest.

Still, the game was great through those years. You still had the balance of a great running back combined with, hopefully, a QB who had some guts (a Marino, Favre, Elway, and of course Bradshaw).

Further hurting the NFL (though not in the ratings) is the proliferation of "bad stories." Yeah you know who and what I mean. Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson, among others.

Before you think that my feelings about today has anything to do with the lack of a western-Pennsylvania-based team with three hypocycloids on only one side of their helmet, think again.

Ultimately, I think it's all of the above, combined with the teams participating.

Seattle Seahawks. I had a moment a few weeks ago, when a saw that a now-former Facebook friend made a snide remark about the Steelers losing. Yes, I said "former" friend. Not my finest spot. That being said, I'm sort of done with the 'Hawks. They're not Jim Zorn or Dave Krieg or Steve Largent. They're the whiny franchise who hasn't gotten over Pittsburgh 21, Seattle 10 in Folly Game number 40, as they and others believe the striped shirts were out to steal the game from them. It's Richard Sherman running his mouth. It's the great Russell Wilson and "Go Hawks." It's not that I dislike them, or their 12th man. It's that we saw them last year. That's enough.

Green Bay Packers. Their are similarities between the Steelers, the Giants, and the Packers. Then there is the "best fans in the league" stuff. There is also the cheesehead and the Lambeau Leap. You can hear John Facenda's voice when you even think about them. Yet I can't get past early 2011. I can't get past the loss in Jerry World to Discount Double Check and company. No, they've had their time also. I could find myself pulling for them later, but I'm not invested. Shawn Sailer likes them. That doesn't hurt.

New England Patriots. Here's the thing. I love watching greatness, and Tom Brady is brilliant. Best quarterback ever? No, I'll take Johnny Unitas. I'll take Dan Marino. After that, we start talking about what era a player played in. Bill Belichick, love him or hate him, is amazing. He's not Vince Lombardi, but he's very high on he list of greats. Incidentally, I just heard Chris "Mad Dog" Russo give little respect to Chuck Noll. The less I say, the better, especially since I like the Doggie. Yet I think we can all agree we're past pulling for the Pats, if we ever pulled for them at all.

Indianapolis Colts. This, friends, is the closest I can come to jumping on a bandwagon. Andrew Luck is the man. Chuck Pagano? How can one not want to be "Chuckstrong?" They're the lesser of the evils. They are also the heaviest underdog in my mind.

So there you have it. I guess in the end, I'm going to hope for two compelling games, as well as a good super game (no trademark needed). I just don't have the passion for it. Maybe it will happen. For now, I'm happier watching Rangers/Penguins with the great Doc Emrick.

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