I read three things religiously: the Wall Street Journal, the funnies, and the sports pages. They reflect, I hope, the various parts of my personality, but that’s not what this post is about. It’s about the Patriots.
Let me say right now, I’m sick to death of all the hatin’ that’s going down the Patriot way these days. They’re good, it’s true. Possibly the best ever. Only time will tell – after all there are six more games in the regular season. But one cheap shot from a defender? It’s 1986 all over again. I lived through that season, and I’m delighting in this one. Anyone who follows football knows that one hit on the right person can kill the season for a whole team. Every football fan goes into a game with fingers crossed and prayers humming that no one gets Joe Theisman-ed.
Everyone is getting all down on the Pats for running up the score. Even Belichick is becoming some sort of an apologist for his team’s points. You know what I say? Get used to it. Deal with it. Let’s suppose, just for an instant, that things go the way Bob Kraft hopes they will (and there are no guarantees). You know what happens after this? Changeroo. Next year, the team is likely, no, is destined, to look completely different. Will Brady have the receiving corps he has now? Um, no. Moss has a one year contract. We all hope he’ll stay, but we all thought they would work out a deal with Deion Branch, and now he’s playing for my sister-in-law’s team. The NFL is set up so that once in a long while, your team will be the greatest. Last year it was the Colts. This year, hopefully, it’s the Pats. Next year it may be Houston. Dynasties? Hah. Luck is more like it. Three championships in 6 years is more a sign of Pioli’s ability to hire well and the coaching staff’s ability to work the corps than it is of a 1970s era empire-building.
So I’m going to enjoy the run while it lasts. I hope they go all the way and make the 72 Dolphins choke on the champagne they send to the teams who almost, but not quite, break their undefeated record. But mostly, I want to see the Pats continue to play, and play well. And run up the score.
Here’s hoping they win tomorrow.
ETA 11/29/07 Whew!! What a nail-biter indeed. Good on Philly for bringing their game. And Feely was impressive! But it’s a full 60 minutes of football, and both teams played a full game.