21 January 2008

NFL Playoffs: Some Thoughts

Executive Summary

Overall winners: Mr. & Mrs. Manning
Overall losers: Norv Turner, Brett Favre

Full Report

Everyone expected (and I think it's fair to say, wanted) a Pats-Packers final. I did, too. It might have been the highest rated Super Bowl ever. But both playoffs were closer than most predicted. We were closer than we would like to think to a Chargers-Giants final. Just pause for a moment and imagine the difference in excitement between those two possibilities.

Here's what I don't understand: why did Norv Turner keep Philip Rivers in the game? Does anyone else think that a one-legged QB is better than a two-legged backup who has proven himself up to the task? Does Norv Turner even remember what it's like to throw a football? You need two legs to be an NFL QB. A person needs to be able to put all his weight on both legs to throw or hit a ball properly. Anyone who has been through ACL recovery can appreciate the difference it makes in being able to properly balance one's weight.

Don't underestimate the importance of the lower body in the throwing process. Nolan Ryan was once asked what advice he'd give young pitchers and he said strengthen the legs.

In my mind, what little chance the Chargers had was erased by Turner's poor decision. Philip Rivers missed half his passes and threw 2 interceptions. What is the point of having a backup if you're not going to use him when you need him? What are they paying him for? Why bother even scouting for a good backup?

I don't get it.

In any case, I'm hoping the Super Bowl will be good. It does have that annoying history of boring, lopsided games. And let's face it: if ever there was a year for that to happen, this is it.

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