Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Monday Night Football recap

New Orleans Saints 17 @ Atlanta Falcons 14: Honestly, if this is the best the NFC has to offer then I suspect the AFC teams heading into the playoffs are going to be licking their chops. With the win the Saints bagged a playoff spot, but to win the division they'll need some help from Carolina next week which is unlikely. Their more immediate concern might be their offense. Drew Brees was 35/49, which looks good on paper, but for just 302 yards leaves them with an average of just over 8 yards per pass. Brees also bagged 1 TD, but also 2 INT's, one of which was an absolute shocker that was returned for a touchdown. This was simply not good enough from either team. While some mistakes were punished, others went penalty free and that simply isn't going to happen in the playoffs. Both teams really need to knuckle down and focus this week. That also cost me another pick, taking me to 8-7 for the week. Now, before I head off to go and stab my voodoo doll of Sean Payton, I have two things to bring to your attention. The first is this article regarding some of the fines that were levied after week 15, including a $7,500 fine for a horse collar tackle. What I want you to take note of is the 341 comments. Juts read some of them. If the NFL has any questions about where the fans stand in regards to all these junk fines, I think they can find the answers there among the overwhelming hoard of negative comments. Which leads me to another article that has me questioning my most improved analyst blah, blah award. This article by Pat Kirwan makes him a strong contender as it vastly overshadows some of the shoddy work he put up earlier this year. In particular I'd like to point you towards the last point he makes (emphasis added by the way): "I don't care what teams publish as attendance at NFL games, there were way too many empty seats this weekend. The average fan simply can't afford to go to a game and I'm starting to think the clubs must get into the reality business and lower ticket prices -- or be prepared to play to half-filled stadiums." "I'm not here to name names, but it was embarrassing to see upper decks half-empty and even seats on the 50-yard line unused. The players need to look at the stadiums they play in and also realize that, unless there is a radical change, they too will suffer financially." "People can't afford to go to games, can't appreciate all the talk about how much money the players want, or see any logic in owners wanting to expand to 18 games. Let's stop thinking about the NFL machine and look at the empty seats and find a solution." As if by magic, Mr. Kirwan has been transformed from corporate spokesperson (like earlier in the season) to the voice of reason that echo's what the vast majority of NFL fans think. It's a miracle worthy of any Christmas tale and it needed to be said by someone in Kirwan's position. With any luck the rest of the mainstream media will catch on soon. I never thought I'd say this but; God bless you Pat Kirwan.

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