Andrew Hamm: the Bipolar Express

Ruminations on theatre, music, and just about anything else that crosses my bipolar brain.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Divisional Round Recap

Wow, that was a great weekend of football, again! All four games were one play away from being completely turned around. Rex Grossman even looked good (making me look bad--that was the only pick I've missed this postseason). I had to listen to the Sunday games while driving home from Nashvegas, and had a revelation: Football doesn't work on the radio at all.

Peyton Manning had a 39.6 passer rating on Saturday, he has thrown one touchdown and five, count 'em, five interceptions--and yet the Colts have won their way to the AFC Chapionship game on the strength of their defense. Not just their defense, their run defense. All of a sudden, they look like a Tony Dungy team. That's downright weird. If you like D (as I surely do; I also like pitcher's duels), that Colts-Ravens game was one of the best matches in years. Adam Vinatieri sure looks like a bargain this morning, doesn't he?

A moment of silent respect is due for the Seattle Seahawks, 9-1/2-point underdogs who took the powerhouse Chicago Bears to overtime before losing. Mad respect to Rex Grossman's good game, but I already know I'm picking against him next week. I think the Saints have that whiff of destiny Frank Creasy claims to have detected on the Bears. The Eagles, too, deserve a tip of the cap for their improbable playoff run, holding the Saints' offense down much more than I thought possible. Interesting how both NFC losers had severely decimated secondaries. And I can't imagine a guy I'd like better as my number two QB than Jeff Garcia. All three NFC East teams are gone...

How about them Patriots? Finally, I almost called the right score on one of these things. Is it just me, or does Tom Brady look more and more like Joe Montana with every fourth-quarter comeback drive? I feel awful for Marty Schottenheimer, who really doesn't bear the blame for having to face a team as magical as New England. I think the Chargers would have gone all the way if they'd had to face any team but the Patriots.

So the top seeds vanish from the AFC and advance in the NFC. Somehow, both Saints at Bears and Patriots at Colts seem right, as if preordained. As I drink coffee from my Red Sox mug, I can only think: I can't wait until next week!

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  • At 1/15/2007 11:16 AM , Blogger Frank Creasy said...

    Gotta get my post in here before Carol takes me to see "Night at the Museum"...Andrew, I'm kinda hoping I'm wrong and you're right about the Bears vs. Saints. Who WOULDN'T love to see the Saints in the Super Bowl? Talk about your Cinderella club!

    But as for the Pats: GREAT win, and when they drove for a score at the end of the first half it looked like they were positioning themselves well for the winning drive. But the victory is tainted by the shameless, classless victory dance on the Charger logo on the field after the win. The only reason the Pats have had this much success without becoming truly hated around the country is that they've always been a class organization. Pulling off a stunt that ranks down there with T.O. dancing on the Cowboys logo (BEFORE he was a Cowboy) makes you look as bush league as they come. Bad move, guys, bad move.

  • At 1/15/2007 6:04 PM , Blogger Scott Wichmann said...

    Hey, I gotta weigh in here on this 'Dance at midfield controversy' thing that everyone's been talking about. So, let me get this straight-- this guy, shaun merriman of the Chargers, creates his own choreographed 'Sack Dance' called the 'LIGHTS OUT DANCE' that he does every game, after EVERY SACK HE MAKES, then gets busted for STEROIDS midseason, goes on to call out Jason Taylor of the Miami Dolphins for no reason whatsoever, and everyone is mad at New England for being Disrespectful?? Whoa, hold up. The Pats are the conscience of the league, folks. They throw that cornball trash right back in the faces of the me-first goons that parade around the league like they've won something. Mike Vrabel caught a TD Pass in the Superbowl vs the Eagles and did Terell Owens' stupid 'Bird-dance' thing after scoring-- nobody said a word in disgust, in fact, they were like, 'right on, Mike!!' The Pats aren't about stats; They don't have a corny-ass dance or any gimmicky garbage to hype themselves up. But sometimes they get fed up by the hype coming from the other side... you can bet your ass that they were fired up by SD's game-long trash talk and endless string of personal fouls. I can understand that it was uncharacteristic behavior for them, but I'd be willing to cut them just a little slack-- Richard Seymor is the ONLY pro bowler on the Pats?? Okay, right, like that's fair... And as for Mr Tomlinson & his outrage-- Dude, be mad you lost the game, not because someone mocked your 'roided-up compadre's lame-ass gyrations. Be especially mad at your doofus coach. The
    bolts could have won that game EASILY, and their coach killed them when he needlessly lost a timeout... and it was "LIGHTS OUT!!!" In the interest of Full Disclosure, I'm a Pats fan since I was an embryo... And I'm dancing RIGHT NOW.... LET'S GO PATS!!!

    Hey guys, we moved (finally) and I look forward to getting together with you all to watcg some football very soon... GO PATS!!!!

  • At 1/15/2007 6:35 PM , Blogger Frank Creasy said...

    So I guess my offer to help you move, Scott, is too little too late? Sorry brother! I missed the boat on that one! Hope you and Jen are getting well settled in.

    Hey, I got no beef with the Patriots. In fact, I don't have a particular team I root for these days (growing up in northwestern Virginia, my favorite team became anyone playing the Deadskins). I was briefly a fan of the Dolphins (no-name defense anyone?) and the Vikes during Fran the Scram's heyday. He SO deserved a big ring!

    But I suppose I've seen so much dancing and in-your-face crapola in the NFL for some time now, it's really gotten under my skin whenever it happens, and whoever is the offender. Every sack, every catch for a first down, every touchdown, is followed by THE IN YO FACE SUCKAH CELEBRATION BOOGIE. It was disappointing to see it after such a great game, and it seemed really out of character (acknowledging the offenders you list, Scott, are heinous enough, no question).

    In my early days it was Gale Sayers saying "I am third". Those kind of role models are hard to find these days. A whole lot more humble pie and a whole lot less taunting is what most every NFL team needs right now. "What the world, needs now, is LOVE, sweet LOVE (sing it with me!)"

    But Scotto and Andrew, show up at Casa Creasy on game day and you can root for the Pats or any team of choice. I'm just hoping the onfield shuckin' and jivin' is employed more to fake out tacklers than to piss them off after the play. I'd hate to see the NFL players regularly behave like (shriek!) the NBA! Some may say I'm a dreamer...(Andrew, you can't fault me for using multiple musical references here!)

  • At 1/16/2007 9:04 AM , Blogger Andrew Hamm said...

    I understand what the Pats players were doing, and I wholeheartedly agree that Merriman is an ass. But the Pats have to know that no one outside of New England is going to know and/or care what the context of their action was. They're just going to see T.O. on the star.

    Listen to sports talk radio for the next couple weeks; I guarantee you'll hear lots of previously neutral football fans deriding the Patriots and rooting against them. Just like a personal foul, it's the guy who retaliates who always gets the flag. Bad move, Patriots. You've just clearly branded yourselves as institutionally classless, regardless of the truth.

    The good news is this: the reason the Patriots are a dynasty is that they always play with an everybody-against-us mentality. This could actually end up helping the team get motivated. Like they need it.

  • At 1/16/2007 12:10 PM , Blogger PhilBiker said...

    The Pats/Chargers game was hideous.

    Andy Reid shows moments of absolute stupidity on occasion. Thinking that the chances of his offense converting 4th and 15 was lower than the chances of his defense stopping Deuce McAllister from getting 10 yards in three plays was downright moronic.

    Go Saints!

  • At 1/16/2007 1:20 PM , Blogger PhilBiker said...

    BTW last night they played SuperBowl XXII in its entirety on the NFL Network.

    Ahh... Doug Williams and Timmy Smith featured in the most explosive offensive quarter in NFL Postseason history.

  • At 1/16/2007 1:27 PM , Blogger Andrew Hamm said...

    That quarter is the single best 15 minutes in Redskins history.

  • At 1/16/2007 1:29 PM , Blogger Andrew Hamm said...

    And Andy Reid is a complete moron. What, you're willing to go for it on 4th and 10 but not 4th and 15??? Seriously, what the hell. Look at thclock, knucklehead. With less than two minutes left you go for it on 4th and 50.

  • At 1/16/2007 5:11 PM , Blogger Scott Wichmann said...

    FRANK!!! I got your message & thanks for the invite!! I'll give you a call sometime tomorrow-- I'm still packing some small stuf. Thanks for the offer to help-- most of it went pretty painlessly...

    Back to my New Anglocentric soapbox for the moment-- where is the video of this supposed 'Classless Act' anyway?? Surely if it was so egregious, someone must have gotten it on film-- or wait, was it actually nothing more than garden-variety celebrating??The Pats have been branded 'classless' and nobody can even point to anything specific that was done!! Case in point: After the Pats beat the Steelers (the first time, in the 2001 AFC title game) Willie McGinest taunted the crowd with "Cancel Those Reservations!!" (because the Steelers had already reserved hotel rooms in New Orleans) And mockingly waved his own 'Terrible Towel' at the crowd. Again, no incident. Now, because LT says so, the whole Patriots Organization, Scott Pioli, Bob Kraft & all the Pats employees are classless?? PUHH-LEEEZE!! Talking about classless-- How about the San Diego Chargers Organization refusing to sell tickets to anyone outside california in an effort to stack the box with 'bolts dolts'?? THAT is classless. (And illegal) The Pats don't do that. Or the front office spending the preceeding week planning a Superbowl parade?? THAT is classless. Ahh, Forget it-- if there's a backlash against the Brady Bunch, so be it. Sports Talk radio hosts are trendy windbags who bang the drum of a particluar position until there's nothing left to do, much as I'm doing right now.

    AND FURTHERMORE-- For Tomlinson to go after Belichick is completely out of line. "If Tomlinson says it, it must be true" goes the rationale, just because he won the MVP... Gimme a break. Belichick has nothing but respect for him, and he goes & pops off. Whatever, LT. Have fun at the Pro Bowl, you LOSAH. SCOREBOARD.

    We beat the bolts, NOW BRING ON THE COLTS!!

    PS: I think It's Pats fans like ME that the folks really hate...

  • At 1/16/2007 8:28 PM , Blogger Frank Creasy said...

    Nah, Scott, it's not Pats fans like you people hate. It's DALLAS fans like you most people hate. Because, let's face it, Texans are arrogant enough, but when they field championship football teams they've inSUFFERABLE. Yeah, that's right, accent on the "sufferable!"

    But as for all the backlash, on this day following Martin Luther King Day, I'm reminded of another great black King. No, not Forrest Whitaker. (Kudos to the two of you who got that joke...) No, I'm talking about Rodney King, who famously said, "Can't we all just get along?" (Paging Mr. Owens, Mr. T. Owens, message for you in the lobby...)

    Andrew, you'll have to catch me up later on the sports radio banter. A few minutes of Sports Center is about all I can squeeze in before Carol either changes the channel or leaves the room. And then there's your dilemma...Sports Center, or keep the wife...Sports Center, or keep the wife...wait honey, don't rush me, I'm thinking!(Kidding, kidding, because Sports Center has never ONCE given me an orgasm! I've been CLOSE a few times, but never have they taken me home!) And on that low note, I bid you ADIEU.

  • At 1/17/2007 9:07 AM , Blogger Andrew Hamm said...

    A new low from Mr. Creasy! Can't wait for Twelfth Night rehearsals to start!

    I'm with Scott on this now. All those cameras and no one has footage of this actually happening?

    And I'm actually not listening to much sports talk these days. I found my old MiniDisc player (lost for a year and a half), and I've been listening to a lot of Jerky Boys in the car...

  • At 1/18/2007 6:28 PM , Blogger Scott Wichmann said...

    Here's a nice nugget from Tony Dungy which I picked up via

    Dungy is talking about Peyton Manning being compared to Tom Brady:

    "I don't know that he'll be judged against Tom Brady," Colts coach Tony Dungy said. "But every quarterback will be judged against Joe Montana and Terry Bradshaw and Bart Starr and guys who have won Super Bowls."

    Excuse me, Tony-- Mr Brady has three rings. Bart Starr has Two. Nice, Tony. Nice. Methinks that quote is going up on the New England bulletin board...

  • At 1/18/2007 7:48 PM , Blogger Joey Fanelli said...

    I'm sure that 'ol Belichick got a kick out of that one.

  • At 1/19/2007 1:15 PM , Blogger Andrew Hamm said...

    Tom Brady is Joe Montana. And he's got an opportunity to be even better.


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