The Super Bowl

I went into the Super Bowl with the attitude that it was a win-win for me.  My beloved Cowboys were not present, so I began to evaluate who I wanted to really win or lose the game.

If the hated Giants won (hated, but not hated as much as the Skins or Eagles), the NFC representative would win, and a team that Dallas beat twice and played-well (this is not to say that Dallas had a good performance by the team’s standards, but that they were in the game for the whole game) in their last meeting would also win.  Also, as a good American, I like to root for the underdog (a practice that is easy for any Rangers’ fan).  The Giants would show that they do not need Jeremy Shockey, the third most overrated person in football, behind Dallas’ own Roy Williams, the Chicago defense as a whole, and just ahead of Sean Taylor, who like Selena rode his own death to greatness.

Most importantly, if the Giants won, the Patriots would lose.  No 19-0.  Not the best team ever (that would be the Cowboys dynasty of the 1990’s).  And, that group of cheaters would not set the mark for all-time for other NFL teams.

On the other hand, if the Giants lost, I would be able to tell my grandchildren about watching the game that set the mark for the greatest team in history.  That whiny Eli would lose, as well as the team that Jeremy Shockey plays for.  And finally, and most importantly if the Pats won, I would be able to stop hearing the yearly story about how “the ’72 Dolphins were cracking open another bottle of Champaign”, and then hear the annual interview from that crazy has-been Mercury Morris and the rest of the Dolphins from their nursing homes.

So the point is that I went into the game not really rooting for either team, but simply hoping for a good game, that was until the third quarter when the Pats –up by four- decide that they should go for it on 4th and 13 instead of kicking the 49 yard field goal.  I was stunned.  I think it even stunned the announcers, who generally fall all over themselves to tell us what a genius Belicheat is.  I like Troy Aikman as a player and as an announcer, but when he suggested that the decision was based upon field position, I did a Three Stooges spit-take.  Football 101, if you do not think your kicker can make the field goal in this situation, you punt.  Simple.  You see it every week.

I have friend who suggested that the reason the Patriots went for it was that they had a greater than 50% record of going for it on 4th and 10 yards plus.  My take on this is that all those successes did was to reinforce stupid, arrogant behavior.  If you race to beat a train at a railroad crossing, and you beat it the first three times, it does not mean that you should go with the odds and try a forth time.  Trying to beat trains is stupid and arrogant each and every time you try to do it.

And, it was arrogant.  Belicheats decision showed a total lack of respect for a team that had made it to the Superbowl, had dominated his team on defense, and would end up dominating his team on defense. 

This is where I turned on the Patriots, and I was especially thrilled when they lost by three points (giggle).  Thank you, karma.  And later when news of the planned parade route (see the Mavs for what happens to teams when mayors make this announcement before the game), the copy writing of “19-0”, the sending to press of the book “19-0”, and the new allegations of cheating in previous Superbowls came out, it only served to make me happier that the Pats lost.  I will say this once before I go back to hating them, “Thank you, Giants.”

I just hope that the NFL actually follows up on these new rumors and, if they are true, takes real action against the Pats and Belicheat this time.