What have we learned - Wild Card Weekend
Philadelphia 26, Minnesota 14. Despite the fact that this game was 16-14 into the fourth quarter, I never really felt that the Minnesota offense was going to put something together. That's how good the Eagles' defense was. Philadelphia's offense might have gacked something up and given the Vikings a cheap win, but there was no way that the Vikings were going to drive the length of the field. They gave up one big play on Adrian Peterson's touchdown run, but otherwise, they didn't do anything. Of course, at halftime, the Eagles offense had gone one full game (the second half of the Dallas game and the first half of this one) without scoring a touchdown, during which time the defense had scored three, and that upset me a bit, but at least they were moving the ball, and they managed to score at the end. The way the defense is playing, however, I have some confidence that they can beat the Giants this weekend. The offense has to play better, though. Go Eagles!
DeSean Jackson update! 1 rush for 2 yards; 1 catch for 34 yards; 5 punt returns for 109 yards, including one huge 62-yarder.
Turnovers: Eagles 2, Vikings 2. Turnovers = loss? It's a wash.
Arizona 30, Atlanta 24. Peter King at Sports Illustrated wrote that this game was the only "snoozer" of the weekend, which puzzled me. There was a 27-9 beatdown by the Ravens, and this one wasn't decided until two minutes left. What the hell, King? Anyway, no one was giving the Cardinals much of a chance, but they were playing at home and the Falcons had a rookie quarterback - not a good mix. Sure, the Cardinals weren't playing well, but their run defense wasn't as bad as everyone thought, and Kurt Warner knows how to dissect a defense. Arizona also decided to run the ball, which is always nice. And they kept trying to anticipate the snap count and get onto Matt Ryan, which led to a few offsides penalties but also led to the game-winning touchdown on a fumble recovery. I bet the Cardinals will take that! I doubt if the Cardinals are going to win at Carolina next week, but it would be nice.
Turnovers: Falcons 3, Cardinals 1. Turnovers = loss? You bet. 1-0.
San Diego 23, Indianapolis 17. I went out on Saturday night so I didn't see the game, but apparently the Chargers' punter was the most valuable player. That's always nice to see. Three of the last four years, the Colts have been one-and-done in the playoffs. Of course, the other year they won the Super Bowl, but that's kind of interesting. People have been whining about the overtime rules and how the Colts didn't get the ball, but they were 12-4 playing an 8-8 team (even if it was in San Diego). They shouldn't even have been in OT, for crying out loud! I'm perversely glad that the Colts lost, because I always think they're overrated. Yes, I suck. Peyton Manning makes funny commercials, though.
Turnovers: Chargers 2, Colts 0. Turnovers = loss? I guess not. 1-1.
Baltimore 27, Miami 9. Man, this was a boring game. Miami turned the ball over a lot, which was out of character but not surprising when Baltimore is playing defense. The Ravens' offense did very little but didn't have to, and it got ugly relatively early. The Dolphins got a bad matchup in this game, because the Ravens are a disciplined defense that don't fall for Miami's fancy formations. Nice season by the Dolphins, but they were outmatched. Unfortunately, because I don't like the Ravens either. Oh well.
Turnovers: Dolphins 5, Ravens 1. Turnovers = loss? Most definitely. 2-1.
As for college football ... the less said, the better. Penn State had to play a perfect game to beat a good team on what might as well be their home field (what a joke that is), and they didn't. Oh well. Meanwhile, Utah is the only unbeaten team in Division 1-A, and yet pundits are ranting that they don't deserve a piece of the national championship. Yeah, that's bullshit. Someone today said that Oklahoma was beating good teams by 30 and 40 points. Well, in many games, the Sooners were throwing the ball desperately with their starting QB, Sam Bradford, still in the game, in order to run up the score. Screw you, Sooners! God, we need a playoff. Stupid Nittany Lions.
Next week: Divisional Playoffs! Go, Eagles!