I was watching the end of the Steelers/Patriots game on Sunday and was very excited (mostly because it wasn't the Bears) but also because it was a really fun, exciting game. The Patriots scored. One play later the Steelers get like 60 yards and are at the ten. The next play they score a touchdown.
Or did they?
I watched that play live and said touchdown. I watched that play in slow-mo-and still say touchdown. I know according to the rule it wasn't a catch, but it's the dumbest rule in all of sports because if a quarterback dives over the goalline and the ball is swatted out of his hands, it's still a touchdown because it's dead the second he crosses the plane. But a receiver has to fall over, get body slammed and take a People's Elbow for it to be a catch.
My eyes tell me when it's a catch and when it isn't. Zach Miller's not touchdown when he was injured...was a touchdown. So was Dez Bryant's against Green Bay and so was Calvin Johnson's against Chicago all those years ago. I kinda feel like Forrest Gump...I may be stupid, but I know what a catch is.
I think replay is a good thing. It's important to get calls correct, no matter what sport. Was it a home run or a double? Inbounds or out-of-bounds? Fumble or not a fumble? They are all critical moments in a game. However, the way replay has been used (pop-up slides in baseball as a key example outside of football), is maddening. It's clearly not the intent of the system, and fans across the game are suffering. Let's also mention how the Patriots have benefitted from three of these touchdown/not touchdown calls this year. I really dislike them.
Mystery Partner and I tied at 11 games this week, so I guess I'm not a total failure. But the Bears sure are. Yikes, they stink.
• Indianapolis at Baltimore: The Colts are done for the year. The coaches quit, the players are likely quitting, their franchise quarterback is flying to Germany for experimental surgery like when Street went to Mexico in Friday Night Lights. That's never a good sign for your team's future. RAVENS 27, COLTS 14.
• Minnesota at Green Bay: Aaron Rodgers, savior, comes riding into town on a white horse to save the day. Little did we know that it was actually a pale horse, and he was there to kill the Packers' season with his three interceptions then slink back onto IR for the rest of the season. This game means nothing to Green Bay and everything to Minnesota, who is fighting for a bye and home field. Won't be a fun Saturday in Green Bay. VIKINGS 30, PACKERS 18.
• Cleveland at Chicago: Speaking of fun days, count me blessed that I'll be in LA over Christmas because I won't have to watch this garbage. The Bears' coaching staff is a total joke, and I really, really hope the Browns beat them (mostly for draft pick purposes), but also as the final nail in John Fox's coffin. BROWNS 24, BEARS 23.
• Detroit at Cincinnati: The Lions have everything to keep playing for and the Bengals just found out their head coach is leaving after the season. This is a no-brainer. LIONS 24, BENGALS 10.
• LA Rams at Tennessee: The Rams can clinch their division with a win, which is one heck of a turnaround after last season. Look what a real coaching staff can do for a young quarterback....hmmmmmmm. RAMS 28, TITANS 21.
• Miami at Kansas City: The Chiefs finally figured out their offense again when offensive coordinator (and future Bears head coach) Matt Nagy took over. It won't end this week, and it won't end when he gets to Chicago and molds Mitch into the star he was born to be. CHIEFS 30, DOLPHINS 20.
• Buffalo at New England: The Patriots will get four Buffalo touchdowns overturned and win by a field goal. Seems about right, doesn't it? PATRIOTS 31, BILLS 28.
• Atlanta at New Orleans: The game of the week as it's a battle for first place in the division. The Saints in and they win the division, the Falcons win and they take the lead. It's very exciting, if that's your thing. SAINTS 30, FALCONS 28.
• LA Chargers at NY Jets: For the holiday season, since I'll be in LA (temperatures around 70 each day), the Chargers are my adopted team. Obviously I'll be rooting hard for them to knock off the evil Jets. CHARGERS 27, JETS 24.
• Denver at Washington: Literally couldn't care less about a football game. Just...just awful. WASHINGTON 28, BRONCOS 20.
• Tampa Bay at Carolina: I really want the Bucs to win and stay below the Bears for draft position, but there is no way they are knocking off the Panthers on the road. Because the Bucs are terrible. Never forget that. They are terrible. PANTHERS 30, BUCS 20.
• Jacksonville at San Francisco: The Jaguars just locked up the division and don't really have a chance at a first round bye, so their season comes down to staying healthy until the playoffs. The 49ers are playing to get better for next year and have looked great the last three weeks. And a win moves them ahead of the Bears for draft position. I love it! 49ERS 28, JAGUARS 24.
• Seattle at Dallas: The Seahawks have gone through a number of injuries this year that have caused their play to be incredibly inconsistent. Their lack of running game has been even more alarming. I wouldn't be surprised to see them take a running back early in the draft or even sign someone like Le'Veon Bell just to give Wilson the help he needs. SEAHAWKS 28, COWBOYS 21.
• New York Giants at Arizona: Remember when I said the Washington-Denver game was the least interesting game ever? I lied. It's this one. Yucky. CARDINALS 23, GIANTS 22.
• Pittsburgh at Houston: The Texans can't score. The Steelers are angry. This is going to be a real problem for Houston. STEELERS 34, TEXANS 20.
• Oakland at Philadelphia: The Eagles lost their star quarterback and their backup throws four touchdowns in his first game of the year. I know some people complain about "system quarterbacks" but it's only because their team doesn't have a system. EAGLES 30, RAIDERS 17.
• Mystery Partner: Ravens, Bears, Rams, Patriots, Chargers, Panthers, Cowboys, Steelers, Vikings, Lions, Chiefs, Eagles, Cardinals, Redskins, Saints, Jaguars.