1. Seattle Seahawks (1) – The Seahawks did something I hadn’t seen since they played Dallas during the regular season. They played like total crap at home for nearly 45 minutes. Sparkless offense, poor defense, bad coverage, poor tackling and turnovers. If you ever need to know how not to play winning playoff football, watch the first three quarters of the game. Then the 4thquarter came and Seattle’s O came alive and they ripped up the standard poor GB D to get the game to OT and then ripped the poor excuse of GB D to win the game. For the most part they played like they didn’t deserve to be in the game and then they played like a force. They need to bring their A game to Arizona. Play like that again and you will lose the Super Bowl. Not sure now which Seahawk team will show up for the Super Bowl.
2. New England Patriots (2) – The Pats are Super Bowl bound for the 6th time under Brady. They are a very tough matchup at home. Unfortunately for New England the Super Bowl is in Arizona. They game planned well and are who they are. I firmly believe that win or lose Brady and Belicheck should walk away from the game. Go out on top. As for the game let me quote my Week 11 power poll “As for the game, they ripped the currently sappy Colts apart. Great win.”
3. Green Bay Packers (4) – The Packers came out strong and played their standard game plan and totally dominated the game from the first whistle til into the 4th quarter. Failure to convert in the red zone early would in the end be very critical. The two bad picks Rodgers tossed were critical too. The Packer D and Special teams playing like crap in the 4th quarter and OT were very critical. In the end the Packers simply took Aaron Rodgers advice and relaxed all the 4th quarter. They then relaxed in OT and now they can R-E-L-A-X all off season as they are defeated and done.
4. Indianapolis Colts (3) – They played the same way they did in Week 10 in New England, here is what I said then: “The Colts seem to have been a mirage. They now just fold when faced with a modicum of D. Luck is no longer able to carry this team out of the holes it falls in. If they don’t do a major head shake and get it together…they may yet lose the division to the suddenly hard charging Houston Texans. It is make or break time for Indy.” – well they managed to win the Division and they won two playoff games which is a nice step forward but they never gave their head a shake when they needed to and they indeed folded. I think the Colts are moving forward nicely and next year I think they may make the Super Bowl.
5. Dallas Cowboys
6. Denver Broncos –The Broncos seem to be about to hire Gary Kubiak as their new Head Coach. Kubiak was never very effective in Houston and he seems to be getting this job as he was Elway’s backup. Good luck Denver.
7. Carolina Panthers
8. Baltimore Ravens
9. Pittsburgh Steelers
10. Detroit Lions
11. Arizona Cardinals – Must be galling to the Cardinals that their home locker room will house the Seattle Seahawks. If they could only have had some O in the playoffs the Cards could have had the dream.
12. Cincinnati Bengals
13. Houston Texans
14. Kansas City Chiefs
15. Buffalo Bills – Rex Ryan has guaranteed playoffs next year for Buffalo. I don’t think that is a crazy promise as the Bills are close and Ryan may be the guy who brings them to the promised land.
16. San Diego Chargers
17. Atlanta Falcons – no coach yet as the other candidates are all landing someplace. Will they get anyone or is Dimitroff turning off all the candidates with his ‘style’?
18. Miami Dolphins
19. New York Giants
20. Oakland Raiders – Jack Del Rio is their coach. He has never won much more than the wood chopping contest in a locker room. Can he bring the playoffs to Oakland? It will depend on how he handles the existing core talent.
21. Philadelphia Eagles
22. Jacksonville Jaguars
23. San Francisco 49ers – They hired Jim Tomsula as their new coach. He had been an interim coach for one game years ago and has been something like their O line coach for years. He is a ‘safe’ hire but I don’t know if this puts the closer to the playoffs than they were with Harbaugh.
24. New Orleans Saints
25. Minnesota Vikings
26. New York Jets – They hired Todd Bowles. I think there are a million juries out on how good a move this will be. Bowles is touted for the quality of the D he Co-ordinated in ‘Zona. That could be or he was just blessed with great players. We will have to see how good a coach he is.
27. St. Louis Rams
28. Cleveland Browns
29. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
30. Tennessee Titans
31. Chicago Bears – The Bears hired John Fox as their coach. An inspired choice to help turn around a D that is in terrible shape. He gets D’s back on their feet and that is the number one job for him here. The Cutler issue will have to be dealt with quickly and it will be interesting to see if that hot mess is still the Chicago QB come August.
32. Washington Redskins
There you have it, as always I am happy to get any thoughts, comments, arguments or agreements. I will be happy to accept money, preferably tens and twenties!
MR N the BEARS Fan