Week 16 observations

Week 16 put football and Christmas Eve together – a perfect match.   We decided on a quiet day together with some holiday-themed snacks for the day of games.  This was our frozen holiday slush drink:

The late games/supper snack was cocktail meatballs (I threw a few of these on a bun with the sauce for an outstanding sandwich):

Here’s what I saw during this week’s games:

Eagles: What had been a virtual inevitability became official on Sunday, the Eagles will miss the playoffs this year.  That being said, they played a very efficient game against the Cowboys for a 20-7 win.  Granted, Dallas had their backup QB in the game and were resting some of their starters on offence, but it was a complete and clean game for Philly.   Vick had a strong game and was well protected by an OL that has really come together as the season has gone on.  The defence pressured McGee all game with a 4 man rush and added to their NFL leading sack total.  Now on a 3-0 run, the Eagles have a meaningless game next week with which to close out the season.  I uttered my annual “Maybe next year” on Sunday for my Eagles as their Super Bowl hopes ended – sadly, something I’ve said every year I’ve watched football.

Giants/Jets:  I needed the Jets to win to keep the Eagles alive for a playoff spot.  In their infinite wisdom, they called 64 (!) pass plays for Sanchez.   That was complete foolishness.  The Jets may still make the playoffs in the AFC, but they’ve really fallen from their near championship form from the past two seasons.   They’re a team with no running attack, an overrated defence and a coaching staff that might be running out of motivational tricks.  The Giants didn’t look much better in this game.  They’re set for a winner makes the playoffs game with Dallas next week.   Given how those two teams have played down the stretch, a tie might be a fitting result.

Steelers:  Charlie Batch may be the ultimate backup QB.  He was almost mistake free and led a balanced attack on the way to a 27-0 win.  The Rams really weren’t a challenge in this one.  The goal for Pittsburgh will be to win their finale against the Browns, hope for a Ravens loss and just get healthy for the playoffs. 

Packers / Bears:  After a very slow start, the Packers pulled away on the strength of 5 Rogers TD passes.  The Bears had a solid game plan early in running the ball, but couldn’t keep pace once the Packers offence warmed up.  For the Packers, Jordy Nelson is a really under-appreciated WR.   He’s quietly having an outstanding season.  After signing a 4 yr $14M contract, he might be one of the best contractual values in the NFL.  Funniest moment of the TV broadcast – a woman holding up a sign in the Lambeau Field crowd that read: “My cheating ex boyfriend is watching from the couch instead”

Indy/Houston: Nice win by the Colts using a last minute TD drive for their second win of the season.  A lot of undisciplined play by Houston aided that drive, but Orlovsky made 2 nice passes to Wayne to pull the game out.  Houston will make the playoffs but needs to play much more disciplined football once they get there to have any success.

Broncos/Bills:  Tebow came crashing back down to earth with a 4 INT game.  Someone once wrote that Tebow’s throwing motion looked like a moose trying to <expletive> a washing machine.  That’s a pretty accurate description of the performance on Sunday.  He’ll need to shake that off next week for a win to make the playoffs.

Saints/Falcons: Drew Brees eclipses Dan Marino’s single season passing record in a blowout win over their division rival.  Atlanta will make the playoffs, but it’s clear from this game they’ll be hard pressed to keep pace with the Saints should they meet them in the playoffs.   

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