Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Whatever takes the attention off of what you say Tony, I guess
So, here I was, on a Monday night, settled on my couch, 4 pack of Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA, ready to watch my fantasy team take 5th place in ouR league (I know, I know, my mother could not be prouder) and of course, a little Monday Night Football. I had hoped that since this was the last Monday night game of the year TK would be on his A game, that he would have burn the candle at both ends researching for this game instead of polishing his Aaron Rodgers/Brett Favre comparisons. I should have wished my car had crapped out on me on my way home.
So here's the setting, 4th quarter, the Packers and Bears are tied at 17 with Green Bay driving deep into Chicago territory. The Pack get the ball down to the 20 yard line of Chicago and trot out Crosby to try a 38 yard field goal. Crosby lines up, ball's snapped, hold is down, kick is up......AND IT'S BLOCKED (amazingly not Favre's fault). Immediately there is jubilation amongst the Chicago crowd while Tirico and Jaws utter a couple wows in stunned amazement. So what does our boy TK say? "This is what they do, this is how they score, their defense does everything for them for years and years."
Now, I do not pretend that I am perfect, nor am I a paid football analyst for ESPN. I understand that TK probably does not have access to ESPN.com like I do, but I would expect a man who gets paid close to $2 million to do MNF to do a little bleeping research. TK believes that the Bears defense carries that team (or does everything for it), and while compared to the offense (which has finished higher than 26th once since 2002) they are the 2000 Ravens, it is far from the truth. Here are the rankings by yardage of the Bears' defenses since 2002 through this season prior to tonight's game; 25th, 14th, 21st, 2nd, 5th, 28th, 14th. Wow, two top 10 defenses and three defenses that ranked in the 20s? That's elite, that's what has allowed the Bears to reach the playoffs twice in that same time period.
For some reason--I don't know if it's because of what they did in 2006, the 1985 season, or lack of oxygen--media types such as TK have spoken about the Bears' defense as though it has had this run of greatness this decade--well, at least for years and years. It's been okay, respectable, top 5 twice, two other times in the top 15, but it has hardly performed at a level that would validate such high praise. I mean, should we laud the Ravens' QB play prior to this season while we are at it? I know, let's talk about how awesome the Bucs' unis were before the change in the middle of last decade. For Christmas TK, I hope you get access to that ESPN.com.