Monday, January 15, 2007

The Saner Morning After

Some thoughts on the game that didn't quite fit in to the poetic mood I was in last night:

*Goddamnit, is Donnie Edwards annoying! Whatever defensive frustration the Chargers were able to put up last night, he seemed to be part of it. I mean, I guess that's what Mike Vrabel must have seemed like to Chargers fans: everpresent, and even when he didn't make the spectactular play, he made the necessary one, and apart from the end of the 2nd and 4th quarters, the Pats could not get any flow going, no big runs by Lomo or Corey. But, thing is, Edwards can't do everything, couldn't cover the CB's man for him, and that completion on 3rd and 10 to Reche was the beginning of the end.

*I guess luck really is too big a part to ignore in this game, isn't it? I mean, you have two potential interceptions, a game apart. McCree ( I guess) juggles one, and Rosie Colvin draws in the other like he's got velcro on his hands. And there's your game.

*And I would really like to thank the Defensive Corps of San Diego for their All New Adventures in DumbAssery. They could have won, they could have kept their cool, but those Personal Fouls at two key times, just acted as oxygen to a Pats team hanging on for dear life. Just behave like grown men. But I guess that's hard enough for normal men at the best of times.

*Once again, we see how frakking important special teams are. As someone said on the West Wing once, their successes are private, and their failiures are oh so very public. If they do their job, it's rare if they get the credit, like Osgood batting that ball in on the 1 yard line. But if they don't do their job, Katie bar the door, as with that punt-recovery-fumble-whatever the heck that was by Parker. So, ladies and gentlemen, go thank your special teams players today.

*As deemed by Amy of The Mendoza Line, New Kicker now gets his name back, for being so awesome, for doing nothing else but his job, he is now Stephen Gostkowski, Kicker. (And thank you, Matty Cassell, for holding ON to the ball; a praise that a week and two days ago, he wouldn't have gotten.)

And now we go on an Indy roadtrip. As opposed to other matchups in recent years past, I think the Colts and Pats are pretty well evenly matched. And as a 4-seed who knocked off a one-seed yesterday, in a victory that I believe outstrips the 3 seed Colts beating the 2 seed Ravens, the Pats are playing with house money now. Should be a hell of a game; I'll be on the Cape, but I may even convinced my dyed-in-the-wool baseball fan grandparents to watch it with me.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

The Pain and the Pleasure

24-21 Patriots doesn't even begin to cover it.

It would figure, really, that it would take a game like this to get me writing again.

I mean, I spend my last 7 months writing about passion and blood and nationalism and death, and the last months of the Sox season and the entirety of the Pats season might get to seem a little inadequate.

Tom Brady, I love to death in ways incomparable to other mortal men, but William Wallace dying on the block on Tower Hill always has a bit of an edge, don't it.

But then a game like this emerges, and I remember why I do this in the first place.

It really is one of those games which embodies everything in the spectrum of professional sports. How you can be so infuriated, so frustrated, so completely exhausted by such mortal endeavors, and then so enleavened, lifted up, and illuminated at the same time.

The same group of men, who make you scream when they combine to create an intecerption, make you sing with delight at something like Reche Caldwell's 49-yard completion in the fouth quarter.

Those same mortals, who make you bury your head in your hands, as LaDainian Tomlinson strides almost 50 yards to set up a touchdown, make you look towards the heaven, thanking the strangeness of fate on a play like the interception-fumble that set up the game-tying touchdown.

It makes more sense after several quantities of liquor, mostly because right now it's just too incredibly strange to believe.

It could end all next week. It really might, considering the weird luck which combine to carry them to victory. But fate's glass has been refilled, and we live in the weirdness of statistical improbibilty for 7 more days.

this is why I write. this reminds me why I like watching sports. see y'all next week.