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Congrats, NFL, we're 2-for-8Posted Monday, January 18, 2010, at 12:39 AM
We've just completed what I'd normally call the two best football weekends of the year. The first two rounds of the NFL playoffs are awesome. You get four games in two days -- no overlap and lots of outstanding football.
Wait a minute, did I say outstanding football? Unfortunately, most of the teams forgot the outstanding part this year.
Let's look back to last week. The Jets made the trip to Cincy to play a team that didn't seem to be there at all. Later that night, the Eagles didn't show up in Dallas at all. In Sunday's early game, New England was DOA against the upstart Ravens.
Only the Packers at Cardinals was any good, and it was all-time classic. I'd like to thank both teams for the memories, but I'm a Packers fan, so they really aren't good memories.
But the divisional round is where things really happen. You get the top four teams in the league playing against the guys who proved themselves in round one. The only problem this year was, most of those teams didn't prove a thing in the first round.
We started the weekend off with Arizona at New Orleans. Arizona's defense was every bit as weak as it had been against Green Bay last Sunday afternoon. The only problem was, the offense didn't bother to show up.
For all you Colts fans out there, I know Saturday night was exciting, but for me, a sports atheist at this point, it was awful. I'm not even saying I cared about who won -- I really didn't. I resent teams stolen from other cities, so I don't have much use for the Ravens.
All the same, though, I want to see a well-played game from both teams. What did I get? I got a Ravens team that had a very good offense for exactly one drive and then proceeded to look like a high school team the rest of the night. Their defense kept the Colts from blowing them out, but the offensive performance was really an embarrassment to the league.
I tip my hat to you, Colts fans. That's a nice team you have.
In today's early game, we had the Cowboys visiting the Vikings. Now, to be honest, these are the teams I historically hate more than any others. I cheered for the Cowboys in this one, but my real rooting interest is for the franchises in Dallas and Minnesota to fold. I wish I were kidding.
The Cowboys seemed to look at what the Ravens did offensively and try to replicate it in Sunday's early game. The only problem was, their defense couldn't do a thing to stop Brett Favre to Sydney Rice.
Afterward, one of the Cowboys' linebackers had the gall to whine about running up the score. Put up or shut up, I say.
Once again, the final game of the weekend had to be the saving grace. I'll admit, the Jets gave us quite a show. They've gotten the help of two kickers going a combined 0-for-5 in two rounds, but they're in the AFC Championship just the same.
With three games to play, I guess all this fan is asking for is some entertainment. The NFC promises to be a shootout, but isn't that what we said about Cardinals/Saints? I have no idea what to think of Colts/Jets. Common sense would say the Colts will kill them since they won't be throwing the rematch. Rex Ryan's crew is frisky, though.
So I guess all I can say is this: PLEASE, all four teams remaining, show up next Sunday. I just want compelling football.
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Jared Jernagan is a 2003 graduate of Wabash College and has been in journalism since 2005.