Thirty-two teams started the season, became twelve, became eight, became four. After Sunday we are down to two. Congratulations to the Denver Broncos and the Carolina Panthers, who will meet in two weeks in Super Bowl L.
I watched the championship games, of course. Not much to say about them.
The afternoon game was a blowout. Must have been very painful for Cardinals fans, and a romp in the park for Carolina fans. Though I did wonder at halftime when the Panthers were only up by 17 points; the preceding week they’d enjoyed a 31-0 lead over Seattle, yet barely hung on to win. But this week Carolina decided to show up for the second half as well. I really thought Arizona would give them more of a fight. Carson Palmer looked dreadful.
The morning game was exciting. Too exciting for my taste; until that two-point pass fell incomplete, I really feared that Brady and the Pats would pull it out. Denver’s pass rush was amazing. I have never seen Brady smacked around so much, even in the two Super Bowls where the G-Men beat him. Evil Little Bill made a blunder by not kicking that field goal late in the fourth when he had the chance; in hindsight, that would have been the difference.
It is always great to see the Patriots lose. And I take some solace knowing that it was losing that game to the Jets that put the championship in Denver rather than New England. It would be have been an entirely different game in Foxboro.
Anyway, the Pats are going home, and the Broncos are going on. It would be wonderful if Eli’s Big Brother could end his career with another ring… but I fear that is not likely to happen. The Panthers just look too tough.
We’ll see. That’s why they play the games.