The Divisional Round picks are coming up, but real quick ...
I don't want to put the cart before the horse, colt or boy who rides horses ... but I can't help myself from thinking about which two teams will survive this and the following weekend to join me in Glendale, Ariz., on the first Sunday next month.
In football terms, most of the 16 potential matchups would offer juicy storylines. (Yes, even one or two that'd include the 7-8-1 Panthers.) Here they are, ranked in order of quality:
How's this for a carrot? The winning QB will be heralded as the Greatest Of All-Time. (Don't worry, Niners fans: Montana's name will still be invoked ... at least by more "mature" supporters.)
It's no secret Peyton and Romo have had their postseason struggles, so what if this game goes to overtime? There's a decent chance neither QB would come through ... causing the game to go on forever ... or at least until the 2015 season kicks off.
The team named for our revolutionary soldiers against America's Team. The only thing that'd make it more patriotic would be to watch it while eating apple pie with Uncle Sam, then going to vote.
For Seattle to stay in the winner's circle, they'd have to do what they did to Peyton and Co. all over again.
A showdown for elititude between the two QBs subjected to the silly "Is he elite?" debate more than any other humans.
They're both birds. Get it? (Sorry, that's all I could come up with.) Likewise, the two defenses might prevent the offenses from coming up with many points.
Baltimore has many great things going for it ... but when I watch 'The Wire,' "Charm City" ain't exactly what comes to mind. Likewise, "Titletown" is a fine name for the home of all those NFL titles ... so long as we ignore the fact other sports are still being played on US soil.
Like Felix and Oscar, Newton and Luck have very different grooming habits: One is GQ, the other has a neckbeard. The pigskin-based stylistic differences between the QBs and their teams might make for a surprisingly entertaining Super Bowl.
These two teams played a gem of a Super Bowl back in February 2004 ... but the game was trumped by Janet Jackson's halftime exposure.
The actual game might not be terribly competitive, but the survivor of a literal bucking bronco versus a full-grown panther fight is tough to identify.
Winner gets the Lombardi, the loser gets to go to Charlotte to do some gardening around the Smith home.
Still a long way to go before any of these Super Bowls actually takes place, of course ... so let's focus on the here and now...
WARNING: Do NOT continue reading if you don't want to know the final scores of the Divisional Round games.
(2-2 last week, 175-84-1 on the season)
J. Flacco: 25-35, 270 yds, TD, 2 INTs
J. Edelman: 9 rec, 120 yds, 2 TDs
C. Fleener: 2 TDs
CAR offense: 3 turnovers
D. Baldwin: 40-yd TD rec
D. Murray: 130 yds/scrimmage, TD
A. Rodgers: 4 TDs
Enjoy the Divisional Round! I hope your team wins.