Separating the Sheep from the Goats
~ Amy Lignor
Perhaps it’s the working off the Summer B-B-Q. Perhaps it’s simply the fact that the rookies need to be weeded out and the pros are looking to gear up for the winter and need to figure out exactly how to forage in order to make it through to the end. But when it comes to the month of December, it is a fact that the football teams in the NFL transform right before your eyes.
The Bengals were winning. They were looking like the tigers they are when even the QB decided, what the heck? And made sure to show his running prowess to get into the orange end zone and put a stamp on the fact that the Bengals were no longer a team where men and women in a bar went: Who? But then…the Steelers decided they were alive and the game turned 360 degrees. Andy Dalton and the Bengals were outscored 25-0 in the 4th quarter yesterday, and the Bengals had to limp off their home field wondering, what the heck just happened?
Yes, Seattle breathed life into their Super Bowl champion bodies and decided that the Eagles should go back home and not take flight in their stadium. Was this a surprise? For some. However, the biggest surprise may be this year that NO ONE seems to remember that if it were not for a QB who is quiet, this team most likely would not score a point. They have a running back worthy of the game, God knows, but the constant yapping from others make them seem at times like a high school football team angry at the neighboring school. Will they repeat? Nope. December is too late for them, and oddly enough they know it. (You just can’t hear it over Sherman’s constantly barking mouth). And FYI: There is this team called the Arizona Cardinals that are on top of the division AND won again yesterday. I have no idea why that mean-looking bird doesn’t seem to understand that the nice red and white bird is actually in their way. When or if Seattle goes in as a Wild Card, I guess they’ll notice it then.
The San Francisco 49ers are making Montana weep. In fact, it would not be a surprise to walk into a bar and see Montana, Young and Rice sitting there wondering: “What?” A five-time Super Bowl Championship team. Colin Kaepernick is the QB. He is young. He is testy and he doesn’t like to answer questions without bowing his head and looking as if he is a five-year-old being reprimanded. His coach? Dad? Well…he looks like he’s simply given up. And perhaps he has…because to have a post-season without the Niners, even as a Wild Card, seems like having Thanksgiving with no turkey. But the Raiders? This is just sad.
Eli Manning and the Giants should be farther ahead. Or at least out of the basement. This is a man who will not give up until he’s at least 7-7. He does not want to be here. He has a past that shows he’s a fighter. Unfortunately, bringing on a West Coast offense and saying here you go is not working in New York.
There’s no reason to even speak about the Jets…so I digress.
You assume the headlines will say: “Peyton Beats the Bulls Easily.” But no, it reads: “Broncos Hold On.” Are they holding on? How much would it take to lose their grasp? After all, this is December and everyone wants to get there. Peyton is one of the best. But there are also those teams who have nothing to lose and can destroy you just for fun.
Cam Newton gets into a fight with a Panther? Come on. The Saints fighting is like angels slapping you with their wings. But the Saints had it hard this year. And the last thing they needed was a boring cat to come into their world and growl after all the garbage Carolina has had this season. Apparently…we saw how an angel fights, and it’s not pretty – but it’s very, very real. And seeing as that it was a Panther that was ejected, the light still shines on the Saints…just not on the scoreboard.
December isn’t Green Bay’s time…simply because the whole year is their time. They had a rough start. Again, perhaps working off the summer B-B-Q, but after the QB decided RELAX-ation was key, his team decided that they would kick everyone’s butt and have a good time. It worked.
Is there a sure thing? Sure. Green Bay is headed to the end. Will they win it all? Who knows? But they have a great shot at it. Will the Seahawks rise up out of anger and smash them down in an NFC Championship? No. But keep dreaming.
Oh, and you can’t throw stones at Justin Bieber’s house. Well, I suppose you can, but not for the New England Patriots. Even hanging out with Gronk didn’t stop Tom Brady from doing his job. Yes, he was a bit tired at first. Again, maybe that Thanksgiving dinner was still keeping him down. OR he despised not being at home for the holidays. OR, the Green Bay loss still hurt (although, Brady bounced back from that fairly fast), OR the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show airs December 9th, so he wanted to get home to support his lovely wife’s career. You know, get away from smelly men and be around way better smelling women. No matter what the case was, Brady woke up in time and threw a stunning 69-yrd TD pass. Gronk was alive and well and earned an NFL record. And Bieber, well…this is one thing he can’t be blamed for. Go BIEBS!
If the Super Bowl this season is not Green Bay versus the Patriots 75% of this country will be more than surprised. December allows the ‘right’ teams in the NFL to shine, and they are.