January 28, 2002

The Greatest Game In The History Of Sports!: (this year.) So somehow, the Patriots have charmed their way into the Superbowl. I should know better, since I keep picking against them - but how the heck can they beat the Rams on turf? I just hope Mike Martz doesn't start bawlin' like Vermeil.

posted by owillis to football at 02:13 AM - 11 comments

The Patriots won because they held the best rushing team of the year to 68 yards -- only 19 from the running backs. Part of that was because the Steelers fell so far behind, but I think the Patriots did a good job of shutting everything else down and forcing Kordell Stewart to try beating them. If the Patriots can have the same success against Marshall Faulk -- a much bigger job -- they have a chance to win. I don't think they can, though.

posted by rcade at 08:55 AM on January 28, 2002

agreed, rcade. the steelers rushing game is a traditional pound 'em up the middle attack, whereas st. louis spreads out the defense with an awesome receiving corps and then uses faulk on draws and misdirection. the pats must defend against pass first, and faulk has shown how effective he can be in that situation.

posted by lescour at 09:35 AM on January 28, 2002

Warner's days are numbered. Those rib pains he's been having? That's the alien trying to escape. Sometime in the 2nd quarter of the Super Bowl Warner's chest will explode and out will pop a Thetan. Pats 28, Rams 23.

posted by thebigpoop at 10:41 AM on January 28, 2002

The Patriots have made it to the Super Bowl through a couple of quirky plays, instead of flat-out beating the other teams. They would have lost the game yesterday without the two special teams touchdowns. (The Steelers helped them out by trying to convert The Bus into an outside running back instead of going up the middle, and the Steelers were looking past them.) However, they showed a lot of courage and perseverance in winning both games, and their defense did a great job against two of the top offenses in the AFC. I think they've got a chance against the Rams. The Patriots can use the "we get no respect" motivation, and anything can happen. But I'm just saying that because I hate the Rams. I just want a good game, and I'm glad there's only one week between the championship games and the Super Bowl. I just hope Mike Martz doesn't start bawlin' like Vermeil. And I hope we're spared another Kurt Warner "give it up for Jesus!" moment. Isn't there something in the Constitution about the separation of chuch and football?

posted by kirkaracha at 11:25 AM on January 28, 2002

I expect it to be a stupor-bowl, over by halftime. Yes, the Pats have a good defense and gave the Rams a good game earlier in the season, but that was in New England, and the NE offense only scored 10 pts. Warner was 30 of 42 for 401 yds., 3 TD's, 2 INT's (1 returned for TD). As I see it (and have heard talking heads say), the Pats have to get lucky in the turnover battle, run the ball well to control the clock (keep Faulk off the field) and score with special teams. That's asking a lot to go right.

posted by msacheson at 11:59 AM on January 28, 2002

The Patriots have made it to the Super Bowl through a couple of quirky plays, instead of flat-out beating the other teams. "Quirky" doesn't do enough justice to what the Patriots did on those two special-teams touchdowns. The biggest mistake of the game was Cowher's decision to let his punter kick to Troy Brown instead of kicking it out of bounds. I never understand why coaches do that, especially when they have strong defenses.

posted by rcade at 12:29 PM on January 28, 2002

rcade: the Patriots did a great job on the two special teams plays (and the Steelers did a terrible job of tackling on the punt return). Maybe "fluke" would have been a better word than "quirky"; my point is that for them to win, they had to have two relatively unusual plays to happen--and it's especially unusual that they got both a punt return TD and a blocked-kick return TD in the same game. I'm not slighting how the Patriots played on the two plays, but the fact is they would have lost the game without them, and they can't count on getting those breaks against the Rams. They will need more than 10 points from the offense to have a chance. I was even more suprised that they punted to Troy Brown when I heard that Coslet had been quoted as saying before the game that he was specifically concerned about Troy Brown returning a punt all the way up the middle.

posted by kirkaracha at 01:45 PM on January 28, 2002

This reminds me of the Rams other Super Bowl appearance when they played another team that barely got into the Super Bowl (the Titans, Music City Miracle anybody?).. That game ended up being very close, but I don't think the Rams will have any trouble handling the Patriots, especially now that their defense is arguably better this year than when they won the championship.

posted by insomnyuk at 03:48 PM on January 29, 2002

I don't think it will be close for long, say 42-10.

posted by corpse at 06:00 PM on January 29, 2002

whatever happened to "better lucky than good"?

posted by ajax at 11:44 PM on January 29, 2002

I only have one thing to say about the Pats. Two hands on the ball.

posted by PJ at 03:06 PM on January 30, 2002

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