Yes I’m still alive out there….hockey…work….still in mourning about the Seahawks (I do need to get me a Richard Sherman jersey this summer and start wearing that to football on Sundays….well unless of course Jerry Jones dies before Labor Day mind you…)….three games to go and the last “true” football Sunday is today (please the Super Bowl itself is bigger and more overblown pile of Sportz Entertainmentz then any pile of crap Vince McManon puts out there)….it’s amazing how the more time I set aside for this the less I have at the end…..
49ers at Atlanta:
We know by now how they all got here, funny that with the league trend being a “hot team steamrolling the playoff” being the NFL ….and this year three of the four teams left had a bye and all four teams were division winners….
The Falcons have the superior wide receivers and TE (Gonzalez has outplayed Davis this year no doubt)….and the Mike Nolan found a way to slow down the Seattle offense just enough (at least for a half) to let the offense do what it does, long passing, stretching the field and a token running game (though Michael Turner DID wake up last week), Matt Ryan also finally came to play for the post-season…and the fact that NO ONE takes this team seriously makes them a dangerous underdog (this team does have a habit of jobbing to the Super Bowl winner)
The 49ers come in with everything on a roll…..exposing the Packers as a one man show on offense and defense, Colin Kapernick is still running batsh!t on cheese-heads and Discount Double Checks, Michael Crabtree has come into his own with Kapernick, the running game is a mutil-headed monster and the 49er defense is there too, and I would hope they play the Falcons passing weapons better then Seattle did *sigh*….
I get the feeling Atlanta is gonna be kinda happy to be here, while getting back and beyond this game today was the SOLE focus of the 49ers this year….a little extra hunger, better coaching staff….and there you have it…
Winner and NFC Champion: 49ers
Baltimore at New England:
The Ravens are sure that pesky little pain in the ass team that won’t go away….aging defense, trying for one last run….miracle offense with long ball potential with Torrey Smith and Jacoby Jones….the steady underneath guy in Boldin….Ray Rice and Bernard Pierce giving the rushing game and dump-off options….the Ravens are slowly making the move to an offense first team as well…..not to mention these two teams were here last year….and now Billy Cundiff is sitting at home trying to kick his remote through the TV and missing wide….
The Patriots are a different team this year though, balance in the running game (they can’t keep any tight ends healthy)….better WR play from Brandon Lloyd then Chad 85, and an improving defense (mostly since Talib came over)….and the Evil Empire run by Darth Hoodie and Emperor Brady….experience, coaching and home field….that’s a lot to get past…even with the Ray Lewis retirement party looming….
The best thing you can say for the Ravens here is my awful record in the playoffs this year, but the weather and the wind will factor too….Flacco should be able to gun through those winds, and the Pats won’t gift the long bombs that Denver did last week….and Tom Brady is no Peyton Manning in the playoffs either….plus I admit I’m trolling for the Patriots now just to annoy Jet Fans
Winner and NFC Champion: Patriots
2012 Rookie of the Year:
Russell Wilson (was there any doubt?)….yes RG III and Luck were great this year too, but as the top two players in the league it was EXPECTED of them….you can also make a case that fellow rookie, Alfred Morris, was just as important in DC (and Kirk Cousins was just as effective when he had to fill in for Griffin also), but to quote Clerks…Wilson “wasn’t even supposed to be here!”, first drafted in obscurity, then having to beat out Free Agent Gem (or backup extraordinaire) Matt Flynn…no problem….come in and learn the offense….no problem, 3100 yards, 26 TD and only 10 INT and 500 more yards rushing…and not to mention he lead his team to more wins in a better division, and all the other pretty stuff I’ve been saying about Wilson in the last two months….
Runners Up: Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III, Alfred Morris
2012 Coach of the Year:
Jim Harbaugh (SF)…yeah this team was there last year (though that too was his doing), he’s totally transformed this team and lead it to it’s second NFC Title Game in a row and not only that, he had the guts to stick with Colin Kapernick when Alex Smith went down (you know that guy wearing #11 in the 49ers Visa commercial)…he’s the perfect guy doing the almost perfect job with the team in front of him…
You could make the case of making it for the Pagano/Arians combination, but I just can’t split the award between the two….doesn’t seem right (and I’m a heartless bastard anyway remember, so take your cancer story and shove it, it also annoyed me when Arians magically got sick before their playoff game)….Pete Carroll is also doing an awesome job transforming the culture in Seattle….and yeah you can give me the normal guys of John Fox and Belichek too….or even Harbaugh’s lil brother….but none of them did what Jim Harbaugh did this year…..you might also throw Leslie Frazier in the mix, but it doesn’t take a coach of the year to figure out “hey hand the ball to 28”
Runners Up: John Harbaugh (anyone who can coach that awful Flacco after all), John Fox, Pete Carroll, Mike Shanahan
2012 Defensive Player of the Year:
JJ Watt (Houston)….hey anyone who can make something the league frowns upon (you know, playing defense) seem cool….he’s gotta be the easy pick here, not only that he made swatting passes cool……20 sacks and not only all the pass swats, he made people say Mario WHO?? (and not just Bills fans….ha!)…this was the easiest and most lopsided award to pick (it probably will be each and every year as the NFL sh!ts more and more upon defenses and defensive play)
Runners Up: Aldon Smith (SF), Charles Tillman (Chi), Richard Sherman (Sea)
2012 Offensive Player of the Year:
He broke an unthinkable record this year….hell he even survived the Madden Curse…no running game and a terrible season from Matt Stafford and horrible coaching from Jim Schwartz…122 catches, 1,964 yards “but only 5 TDs”….I very easily could have given the award to any of the runners-up too, but Calvin deserves something for the amazing year he had after all……
Runners Up: Adrian Peterson, Robert Griffin, Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, Alfred Morris,
2012 Comeback Player of the Year:
This one’s easy too….NO ONE did what Adrian Peterson did with as little around him this year…. 2,097 yards and only 2 fumbles lost too ….AP did so much this year I’m gonna be saying his name a LOT below too, so I’m not even going to bother singing his praises here or this is gonna be a Copy/Paste fest……and he did it all coming off major knee surgery is super duper fast forward….”but Peyton Manning came back from two neck surgeries!!”…wah, he also took a year off …bitch please, Manning was only sacked 21 times this year (2nd lowest), while AP gets hit 21 times a PLAY sometimes…I’ll take the back who had the awesome year off the knee surgery cause you know he’s gotta run with it….maybe if Peyton used the thing above his neck more he’d still be playing today J….I don’t even put Manning second here, because what Jamaal Charles did off his knee surgery and with that crap team around him was just AMAZING too….
Runners Up: Jamaal Charles, Peyton Manning
2012 Disappointment of the Year:
No it’s not the Jets….we all saw that coming with the personnel they had….you could make a case for the Bills….that re-vamped D, Fred Jackson, CJ Spiller, and a record no better then the Jets….Kansas City was quite the hot mess too….San Diego failed epically but it was obvious it was time for a change and they finally got one there….you could say the Dallas Cowboys too, but the Rob Ryan firing, keeping Jason Garrett and not even bringing in an OC has made me see the light on this team, this is all they really are is an overrated cocktease that’s only a fatal heart attack away from being relevant…
With all the pretenders cast aside….here’s your EPIC FAIL of 2012…the Detroit Lions, from young and coming team with great talent to an overrated bunch of immature babies who (Calvin-Tron aside), and just general pathetic play….I thought they weren’t ready for Prime Time….but I didn’t think they’d be on the draft clock already…in a league of awful football teams this team should be WORLDS better then this…..
Can I just copy/paste the AP speech above to here too?? The Vikings were a three win team in pre-season projections (and it was more then just me saying this), this was a “re-build season” and time to get Ponder’s feet wet after all and Percy Harvin was crying about leaving town….but whatever miracle cure AP sold his soul for to get better took over, and he carried his team, literally with the football, into the playoffs and into the record books…unlike some other MVP “candidates” who were along for the ride Ray Bourque-style in Denver….or even Aaron Rodgers (who would be my #2 choice for MVP)….or Tom Brady…all these guys had WAY BETTER teams around them, and most of those teams had enough talent around them (well maybe not Green Bay, the 49ers loss showed how flawed the Packers talent is when A-Rod’s not firing at 1,000 %), this too was a no-brainer
Runners Up: Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady