Chargers coach Marty Schottenheimer was much maligned earlier this season because of "Martyball." But it seems like he has finally found the perfect substitute, fall behind by large margins and then the team is forced to throw the ball to catch up. The amazing thing about the Chargers comebacks in recent weeks is not the fact that they rallied for victory. But it is the way they rally for victory. The Chargers are down huge at one point and the next moment, they are either tied or trailing by a few points. The Chargers got down by 17 points against Denver, but before you could walk over to the bar at O’Shea’s to get your $1 beer, the team only trailed by a field goal. And then, it was only a matter of time before the Chargers were going to go on to win that game.
So much for Martyball, eh?
The Chargers, as stated last week, are the best team in football right now. The Chargers finally climbed over the Mile-High hurdle, let’s see if Schotteheimer can get that Super Bowl chip off of his shoulder. Based on talent right now, San Diego is the best team in football. And it might not be close. Barring injuries or some sort of breakdown by Philip Rivers, there is no reason for this team not to be in the Super Bowl.
RIVERS IS GOOD
There was a lot of skepticism regarding Rivers prior to the start of the season, especially here at THN. It was hard to back a guy who couldn't beat out Drew Brees for two years. Plus you had some question marks at offensive line and a thin receiving corps. So it is easy to say that Rivers has far exceed expectations to this point. If you look at the quarterback class or 2004, Rivers is far-and-away the best quarterback right now. Ben Roethlisberger might have won a Super Bowl, but he was merely hanging around for the ride. Eli Messiah looks good when he can toss jump balls to Plaxico Burress. Rivers is winning games with his passes and football decisions.
Imagine where this organization would be if Rivers had not held out during the opening of the 2004 season.
COLTS STREAK ENDS
Don Shula can breath easy again, the Colts have lost. Has there ever been a less impressive 9-1 team? Peyton Manning again showed that he doesn't have what it takes to win the clutch. Who throws the ball away on fourth down on the final drive of the game? Except for Joe Montana who didn't have the arm strength to get the ball out of the end zone in the 1981 NFC Championship Game. But Dwight Clark was not there to bail out Manning on Sunday. Manning probably felt that there was a penalty on the play, but he at least needs to throw a catch-able pass. It kind of smacks of a guy who would rather take a lose than to ruin his passer rating. Not saying that he does, but it was an awful play.
Tony Dungy complained after the game that the Cowboys defenders were a little too physical with the Colts receivers, setting the stage for yet another playoff collapse. The Colts area lot like a feminine version of Elton John. They will continue to fold in the big games until they learn to butch up a little bit.
There is no panic with USC being the No. 3 team in the BCS this week. The Trojans, according to the experts, should jump to the second spot with victories over Notre Dame and UCLA. The notion of Michigan getting a rematch is completely ridiculous. But this is the BCS and the ridiculous often happens. Like the year when the consensus No. 1 team in the country did not make it to the BCS title game. But that's the problem with college football. It gets great ratings and draws a lot of interest. Yet it keeps shooting itself in the foot with this BCS nonsense. Having Michigan reach the BCS title game would be like the NFL finding the AFC (or NFC) Championship Game so compelling, they order a rematch for the Super Bowl and stick the other conference winner in the Pro Bowl.
And you all don’t want another "bad beat" story, because the Sports Dork corners the market on those. But it figures that Notre Dame would ruin the official THN parlay cards in Las Vegas this weekend.
- Have you signed the petition to get Steve Bisheff's Toupee in the California Sports Hall of Fame? Make sure you do. This petition will eventually be turned over to the CSHOF, so make your voice heard.
- Why is there nothing surprising about Donovan McNabb being out for the rest of the season? Obviously it was a fluke play that could have happened to anybody. But, at least in the last two years, it always seems to happen to McNabb when his season is going south. And this is the third time in five years that he has suffered a season-ending injury.
- When did Brett Favre channel the ghost of Al Czervik? He knew when to get out of the game and that bump on his "funny bone" did look a little suspicious. And did you notice that Favre's protégé Aaron Brooks not only pulled the "Czervik," he also managed to return in enough time to lose the game for the Raiders. Obviously, Brooks didn’t trust Andrew Walter enough to lose that game.
- The Broncos will make the move to Jay Cutler after the Chiefs game this week, giving him 10 days to prepare for his first start. Where is that guy saying the Broncos were going to win this game?
- The Chargers are the best team in the AFC (sorry Baltimore), but who is the best team in the NFC? Maybe college football does have the right idea.
- Sports Illustrated's Pete King couldn’t jump on the Rutgers bandwagon fast enough last season, and totally bailed on them this week. The Scarlet Knights are just another team that King has jinxed this season. Stay away from Boise State. But you can just smell a Nevada upset this week for the Broncos.
- The O.J. Simpson television appearance and book about how he would have hypothetically carried out the murders has been canceled. When Rupert Murdoch calls an idea "ill conceived" you knew it was a bad idea.
The Cubs are spending a little money, huh? Hopefully the new owner (Tribune is on the blocks) doesn’t mind. Or maybe the new owner is the one ordering all of this dough to be spent so he can make a big splash when he signs. Somebody like say, Mark Cuban, for instance. Could Cuban really be inline to be the next owner of the Cubs? It might be a little far-fetched to actually think that, but stranger things have happened.
These moves are also leading to the inevitable that A-Rod will be a member of the Angels next season.