I finally return to Expert Fan blog after an extremely long absence (I'm sure everyone out there noticed... right). I come back after some ups and downs that we all have experienced from the current economic state. By the time things had settled down to normalcy, we were already half-way through the 2008 NFL season, not to mention the college football season, so there really was no point in starting up again in the middle of things.
But, no worries. I'm back, and I plan to stick it out this time through the off season and the regular season. As for now...
Ah yes. The NFL season has saddingly come to an end until August. And no, the Pro Bowl doesn't count. I see no better time to begin anew then right now. And... here... we... go:
1). Super Bowl XLIII. I can't argue. I thought the game was very good. But better then last year's Super Bowl? Hardly. Here's why. This year, we had a 9-7 Arizona Cardinals team coming into a game they were supposed to lose. Which they did. And, although they put up a much better fight than most (myself included) thought, it doesn't hold a candle to SB XLII. The New England Patriots were set for destiny rolling to 18-0 and playing a team they had already beaten in the final week of the regualr season. Tom Brady even laughed at their defense "daring" to say they could hold New England. The New York Giants were the final step to immortality. And... the Giants walked away with the Lombardi trophy. The biggest upset in Super Bowl history. And come on, National Media (ESPN). Santonio Holmes' catch was great. But not the best in Super Bowl history. David Tyree holds that honor in my mind, again, because of the situation that game was played under. I wouldn't even rank Santonio Holmes' catch 2nd (3rd? Maybe). Yes, it was the most watched Super Bowl in history, but not the greatest. Exciting, yes. Legendary, no. I'll take Super Bowl XLII any day.
(Author's Note: I may be a little biased here. In the efforts of disclosure I am a lifelong Colt's fan, and New England is our nemesis. So maybe that played a little part in my belief. But not much.)
2). Speaking of the fight the Cardinals put up, another thing that has been bothering me is that no one seems to be really giving that story it's due. Yes, Pittsburgh deserves the spotlight, they are World Champions, after all. But Arizona came in with many feeling they were the worst Super Bowl qualifier ever, and Pittsburgh the most dominating defense since the Ravens in SB XXXV (maybe even better). So what happens? Arizona comes back from a 13 point deficit in the 4th quarter, Larry Fitzgerald winds up with over 100 receiving yards and two touchdowns, and Kurt Warner now holds the #s 1, 2, and 3 spots for most passing yards ever in a Super Bowl. If nothing else (and I know, I know, no such thing as a moral victory) the Cardinals proved they belonged in that game.
3). NFL Draft - So the Super Bowl is over, the Pro Bowl is coming, and the NFL season is over. Right? Wrong. As anyone who watches ESPN (or even NFL network) is aware, the "second season" starts - NFL draft season! We get to see all the draftnicks such as Mel Kiper, Jr., Todd McShay, the people form Sports Xchange, Peter King, etc all try their hands at predicting what player goes where and why. You know what that means? It's time for my 2nd annual Fan vs. the Experts Mock Draft Challenge. Last year (surprisingly), Mel Kiper actually came out in first place, winning the prestigious Riggsby Award for Draftnick Excellence. I, myself, did not do so hot with my first foray, but will look to improve my standing this year. If you have no idea what the **** I'm talking about, see the Expert Fan Blog #1 and #2 posted last year - they shouldn't be too hard to find, since this is only my fourth post. But anyway, keep an eye out for the next post, which should be coming sometime later this week. I'll be making my initial Mock Draft choices.
Questions? Comments? Any football-related topics you'd like me to tackle? E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org!