I’m going to give you my first impression of each of those four walk-off playoff games in one quick shot.
Then, like the Average White Band that I am, I’ll go back and “pick up the pieces.”
Bengals over Titans
“Our three interceptions are greater than your nine sacks.”
Niners over Packers (Coach goes all Debbie Harry on you)
“One way…or another…I’m gonna find ya…I’m gonna gitcha, gitcha, gitcha, gitcha…”
Rams over Niners
“Rams save themselves…from themselves.”
Chiefs over Bills
“So…you’re sayin’ there’s a chance?”
Now “circling back”…as much as I hate that term.
Vrabel didn’t do himself or his team any favors. Shoulda just kicked the PAT to take a 7-6 lead. Later called an awful play after making a sound decision to go for it on fourth down. And why not a little more Foreman, and a little less of a rusty King Henry? Mixon is a helluva player, and Chase may be the Next Big Thing, if he isn’t already. Burrow? Pure KGB. And in this case only, I mean that as a compliment. McPherson? G. Gordon Liddy. Looks like the Bengals are going to the AFC Championship Game, doesn’t it? And maybe heading farther west than Kansas City two weeks later. Yes, Cincy will have a chance against the Chiefs.
There is no shame in losing to the 49ers. SF is tougher than a 50-cent ribeye. But the way the Packers lost was disgraceful, and they richly deserved to lose. After a quick TD drive to start the game, the GB offense did nothing. The Packers’ special teams were awful all season, starting back in Week One. But they “overachieved” on Saturday night at Lambeau, getting a field goal blocked, a punt blocked for the late tying touchdown, giving up a 45-yard return on the second half kickoff, and then finally having only ten men on the field to defend against Robbie Gould’s game winner. Most special teams’ coaches have found it prudent to use eleven. Rodgers? His legacy is in Jeopardy. And a little private research shows that eating horse de-wormer immunizes you against going to the Super Bowl.
How’d you like to be Matt LaFleur? The Packers won 13 regular season games in each of his first three years as an NFL head coach, only to flame out in the postseason. He’s going to start hearing about that. And he should. I don’t think LaFleur is in Love with Jordan, either.
Rodgers thus closes out his time in Green Bay (he is GONE!) with an 0-4 playoff record against the 49ers.
Hmmm. You know who else just can’t seem to beat the Niners? The Rams,, who ultimately failed in their valiant effort to lose to the Buccaneers. LA should have won that game by at least 24. They had a chance for a “two-fer” right before halftime. But Cam Akers coughed it up at the one (foreshadowing things to come), and then the Rams failed to score after taking the second half kickoff. So instead of a two-fer, the Rams got a “no-fer,” and let Brady and the Bucs back in the game. It’s hard to blow a 24-point lead, at least until everyone really gets into the spirit of it. Everybody pretty much did. Including Cooper Kupp, for goodness sake. And of course there was the encore lost fumble by Akers, bringing the Rams’ total to four.
But the Rams ultimately won because it’s always a good idea for men to take protection to a party. Protection. LA protected Stafford like a Doberman protects a pork chop, while Brady got his mouth bloodied, both figuratively and literally. That Ram pass rush is the reason LA may finally break through against the 49ers next Sunday.
Stafford? He’s a stud, and played like one yesterday. Damn, he throws a pretty ball, doesn’t he?
But I don’ think there’s ever been a prettier joint air show than the one we were blessed to witness Sunday night. And to think those two guys are going to be going at each other for at least the next decade.
And was a Star Born in Gabriel Davis? Four touchdown receptions in a playoff game is, like, a lot. I’m pretty sure even Lady Gaga couldn’t do that.
Not much I can add to what we saw. Happy for Mahomes and the Chiefs. Bleeding for Allen and the Bills. TBC.
OK, I will add one thing. (I know you’re shocked!) But, damn, Buffalo…squib kick it with 13 seconds left. Make the Chiefs eat up at least a few seconds.