My thoughts on Super Bowl 46
New York Giants 21, New England Patriots 17
- What a boring game. For a four-point Super Bowl that began with a safety and ended with a fourth quarter comeback and failed end of game Hail Mary, you’d think it was a great game. You’d be wrong. It was boring for long stretches. No big plays either for the offense or defense, no signature moments until a very surreal play at the end of the game, nothing that enthralled the audience. If this was a regular season game, I’d have watched something else.
- Part of that was the match up. Pats and Giants in the Super Bowl. We saw this Super Bowl four years ago. We saw them play in week 9. We hear about Brady constantly, we hear about the Mannings constantly. Coughlin, Belichick, Welker, Cruz, Kraft, Mara, we know the actors, we’ve seen the setting, excuse me while I go watch another play.
- Of course I still watched the SB. I just didn’t care who won. I wanted a good game and good commercials. Got the latter, did not get the former.
- #Belichickfail 1: Never cut a player the day before the Super Bowl. Karma doesn’t take kindly to dick moves. There’s a difference between being cut the week before the Super Bowl when game plans have not been finalized, and being cut the day before when plans have been finalized. Also, the player added doesn’t have time to prepare mentally for the biggest game of his life.
- A bit of research shows that Alex Silvestro, the activated player, has appeared in one game in his entire career (a home win against the Dolphins). Tiquan Underwood, on the other hand, is a three-year vet with 14 catches over 18 games. Neither of these guys are important cogs for the Patriots. So why the last-minute change? So Chad Ochocinco could be activated. That makes the move even despicable. This wasn’t strategy, it was marketing. Pats gotta pay bills, too, I get it. But if this was strictly a marketing ploy, it should have been done much earlier in the two weeks leading up to the Super Bowl. Tinny Tim feels for Tiquan Underwood.
- I applaud the NFL for awarding the NFL’s Man of the Year Award immediately before the Super Bowl. We see the efforts that get MVPs and Players of the Year awarded, so we don’t need a pre-game ceremony for them. We don’t see the hard work players devote to charities, so showing the world that the NFL recognizes and appreciates players’ efforts is a nice gesture. Well done.
- A safety on the first offensive play for the Patriots? And an ugly one at that. Defenders of Brady will say someone ran the wrong route. Haters of Brady will say he got flustered and made a poor throw. I’d say both happened. Right call by the refs.
- Someone won $50,000 for that penalty. A person bet $1,000 that the first scoring play of the game would be a safety for the Giants. At 50:1 odds, that’s a $50,000 payout.
- Why the NFL trots out decrepit has-beens for halftime acts is beyond me. Madonna was the biggest music star in the world 25 years ago, still popular 15 years ago, but irrelevant now. Every star fades. That Madonna lasted as long as she did is amazing. The worst part of the infamous Wardrobe Malfunction is that now the NFL is gun shy when it comes to halftime shows. I’m not saying they should hire Marilyn Manson. Yet these baby boomer acts are tiresome, worn, lame. I was more entertained by the thrice-read book in the bathroom than I was by this year’s halftime show.
- Please, Madonna, stop trying to be 18. You’re a 53-year old mother of four. You can look great at 53, but in a different way than when you were 18. You can be risqué at 53, but in a different way than when you were 18. And please do not ever try acrobatic dance moves again. You looked as agile as Gronkowski looked yesterday; did you have a high ankle sprain?
- Tyree or Manningham, who had the better fourth quarter comeback catch? I vote for Tyree. Less time on the clock, third down versus first down, and he caught it on his helmet. Manningham made a fantastic play, I’m not taking anything away from him. Tyree, though, made the iconic play of that Super Bowl and one of the most iconic catches ever. The whole play was amazing: Manning was in the d-lineman’s grasp, managed to wiggle free, slid away from the pressure, threw it before getting clobbered by three Patriots, Tyree caught it with Harrison all over him, and held on as Harrison wrestled with for the ball. The 2012 miracle catch had a perfect pass and catch. Less drama all around.
- Fact: Tyree’s catch was the last reception of his career.
- The biggest play of the game, the Reluctant Touchdown, was also one of the most surreal plays I’ve ever seen. The defense stops playing so the runner can score quickly. But then the runner realizes he shouldn’t score, so he tries to stop himself from crossing the goal line. He can’t and thus falls backwards for a touchdown. When was the last time you saw a defense want the offense to score a touchdown AND the offense not wanting to score a touchdown? Wacky.
- I hated hearing the announcers excoriate Bradshaw for scoring. He tried to fight the instinct to score that he’s developed for his entire life. He’s a running back. He is taught to score touchdowns any way he can. His “mistake” put his team up by four with less than a minute to play. If your defense can’t keep the timeout-less opposition out of the end zone for 55 seconds, you do not deserve to win the game, let alone a Super Bowl. Put the pressure on the other team to win the game, don’t put it on your field goal unit. Even though the attempt would have been extra point-esque, that doesn’t mean it’s automatic. Weird things can and do happen on field goals. If Coughlin wanted to kick the gimme field goal, he would have had Manning kneel three times. He didn’t, ergo he wanted a touchdown. He didn’t want to leave the game to the whims of the field goal unit.
- #Belichickfail 2: Make the other team beat you. Never give the opposition the upper hand.
- Speaking of the zebras, they proved themselves worthy of being selected to adjudicate the Super Bowl. They let the players play for the most part, but made correct calls all day. The only call I questioned was the holding call on NYG in the fourth quarter when they converted 3rd-and-1. Looked iffy, could have gone either way.
- Both offensive lines were outstanding. Sure, they gave up a combined 5 sacks, but that’s 5 sacks on 81 pass attempts, or one every 16 attempts. Most sacks were coverage sacks. The line can’t block forever, eventually the d-line will break through. Brady and Manning looked quite comfortable in the pocket for the majority of the game.
- Problem for the audience was that the secondaries for both teams played bend-don’t-break defense. The longest offensive play of the game was Manningham’s catch. Otherwise, we saw dinking-and-dunking. Nobody got behind the defenses. Neither Manning nor Brady truly tested the secondaries, which made for a rather bland viewing experience.
- Also, the defenses didn’t provide much excitement either. The Giants-Niners NFC championship was an exciting defensive struggle as both teams made plays on defense. The Super Bowl lacked any outstanding defensive moments: the safety was a penalty, the interception was a horribly underthrown ball, no strips, no jarring hits, no stops on third-and-1, no goal line stands.
- It’s not the yards: Green Bay and Pittsburgh combined for 725 yards in a compelling, fun game, whereas New York and New England combined for 745 in a snorefest. It’s how you get them: GB and PIT combined for six plays of 25 yards of more (including an interception returned for a touchdown), whereas NYG and NWE combined for one play of 25 yards of more (Manningham’s catch.)
- It’s not the points: New York and San Francisco was a thrilling 20-17, whereas NYG and NWE was a monotonous 21-17. Basically the same score, but much different viewing.
- This year’s Super Bowl lacked pizzazz, style, thrills. Oh well. There’s always next year.
- Super Bowl 47 prediction: Miami Dolphins 31, Minnesota Vikings 28
My favorite SB commercials (the best get linked)
- Bridgestone football = Watching Deion complain while the Playstation ad guy dances in the background is priceless
- Kia dreams = Before the Super Bowl, I saw a headline that Motley Crue was in a Kia ad. I couldn’t imagine why they would be in a Kia ad. Now I know why. Great ad.
- Dannon Oikos = I could watch John Stamos get headbutted all day. All. Day. #fuckyouFullHouse
- Doritos dog = Sometimes it’s what is not said that makes all the difference.
- Audi vampire party = “Oh look. More exploitation of vampires. Woo. Oh look. Another car commercial. Woo. Oh loo—OMGWTFVAMPIREBBQ!!!!! BRB LOLING 4EVA!!!”
Bad SB commercials (No links for these wastes of time)
- GoDaddy.com = I can’t stand GoDaddy.com commercials. Never have, likely never will. Please stop.
- Coke = Why did Coke have to ruin the polar bears?
- Cars.com = Hey look. Someone ripped off Johnny Knoxville’s character from MiB 2. How gross. Ew.
- Chevy Sonic stunts = Why did Chevy start the ad with “Don’t try this at home, kids” then proceed to show you all the awesome things you shouldn’t do with this car? Likewise, why do car companies feel the need to advertise their vehicles doing impossible things? “Welcome to our fantasy world, where are vehicles don’t suck and you want to die trying to make our fabulous machines bend the laws of physics!” #fail
- TaxAct = Okay, the kid needs to pee. What does this have to do with taxes?