I don’t watch a lot of pro football, but with snow everywhere, I decided to partake of all 6 Wild Card games this past weekend. After watching all 6 playoff games, I still find pro football a bit of a bore when compared with the college game. I am amazed at the low level of play, at the top of the sport. Of the 6 games only two would be called competitive. The Cincinnati-Oakland game although close, could have been considered a cure for insomnia. Cincinnati did everything they could to try and keep their playoff losing streak alive, but Oakland went above and beyond, to make sure that the Bengals would win the game. The other game that had some doubt in it until end, was the Dallas-San Franscisco game. Dak Prescott will time 14 seconds, 3 times a day every day, until the season begins in September. Dallas made all kind of excuses for why they called that play, but the bottom line is this, two shots from the 40-yard line are better than 0 shots. The other 4 games were blowouts with Tampa Bay’s 15-point win very misleading as they were in no danger of losing that game. We are down to 8 teams, and all the home teams are favored. These 4 games will be analyzed to death by numerous networks, so I am not going there. Despite these in depth over the top discussions of these games, I feel there will be three aspects of the games, that will not be discussed, and in my view will decide the games. The three things won’t be discussed because they make the game look bad on various levels, and the powers to be never like to talk about this.
First, is what I call the incompetent plays. In the wild card games, these plays were too numerous to count. In general, I call incompetent plays anything ranging from dropped balls, idiotic penalties, blown coverages, presnap penalties and just very bad plays. The worst of the weekend was Kyler Murray’s under handed heave from his own endzone that gave a touchdown to the L. A. Rams. Speaking of Kyler Murray and Baker Mayfield, if they ever want to get a championship ring, they better go up to Canada. They don’t have the physical tools to lead a team to the Super Bowl. You had better come to grips with that, Arizona and Cleveland. You will find these plays in high numbers in just about every game of professional football, more so than in any other professional sport. The team that makes the least of these plays will win the game.
Next, is just plain old-fashioned luck. I have discussed luck when it comes to sports in a previous blog. When a player makes an incompetent play, we are not going put that under the luck heading, because that is in the player’s control to make the catch. Luck is when the ball bounces in the right direction for one team and the wrong direction for the other team. Some fumbles recoveries or lack of recovery are a result of luck. A deflected pass that is intercepted has to be considered lucky. There are other examples of luck but again the team that gets the most breaks so to speak will most likely win the game.
Finally, is the officiating. Even with replay, the NFL by far, have the worst officials. No one, of course, is allowed to say a discouraging word about any of these buffoons. Where they are at their worse, is in calling penalties that don’t happen, and not calling penalties that do happen. What is really sad, is most of their calls are really straight forward. There are no decisions they have to be made in a blink of an eye, like in baseball and basketball. Instant replay bails them out in other aspects of the game, as they miss fumbles, players going out or staying in bounds, and where to spot the friggin ball. Their decisions have a major impact on the result of the game, and sometimes the wrong team wins because of their inadequacies.
How are we going to evaluate all of this, to see if this corresponds to who wins the game? When any of the above happens, we are going award one or two points to the team that benefits. If it is considered a big play resulting directly to a score for the benefitting team then they will be awarded 2 points. For all other plays 1 point will be awarded to the benefitting team. When it comes to presnap penalties, it will be decided if this affected the team’s ability to make a first down. The team with the most points should win the game. I will be watching all 4 Divisional Games and see how this system works with the “top 8” teams in football playing. In my view these are the things that determine who wins and who loses pro football games. I only have 14 seconds to finish this blog, so l think the most important factor in this weekend games will be