So. The Game.
Hours before kickoff (you know, about the time Christina Aguilera began singing her riffed version of the national anthem) I was drafting a blog post of notes for many of the Packer players. Just little thoughts to take with them as they took the field.
But if you have kids, you probably already know it’s against the law to put them in your dog’s kennel to keep them quiet and away from you while you watch pre-game and thee-game. So I had kids crawling all over me as I was watching the boys at ESPN break down the game for the millionth time. And the blog post didn’t get written.
But if you’d have seen it, you too would admit it was sage advice.
I told Donald Driver that I knew he was in pain but that pain is temporary and glory is forever. That he needed to suck it up and play – and he did, for as long as he could. And that my daughter read your children’s book where Quickie made the team and she loved it.
I told James Jones that the swagger comes AFTER you do something important. Don’t swagger until you’ve won the game, and you won’t be able to do that unless you hang onto the damn ball. Which you did, sometimes. Please work on your hand-eye drills this off season?
I told Aaron Rodgers that he was The Robot, that every game I knew we got his absolute best, and to just not get rattled and do what I knew he had been well-prepared to do. And he did, didn’t he?
I told Greg Jennings to be more than a long ball hitter. He was.
I didn’t say anything to Jordy Nelson, which obviously was a mistake. Jesus Jordy, YOU may be the MVP of the game if only you caught the balls that touched both of your hands. It’s all you needed to do.
I told Quarless to please pull a vaginal muscle or something so that he couldn’t play in the game. I know. Sometimes I’m a prick.
I want to be honest here – I don’t want to rehash the game, because I have to think you’ve watched it, and you watched the highlights a thousand times already, like I have. For the second morning in a row I’ve woken up and turned on the TV looking for Superbowl highlights. Nick Collins and his pick and stellar runback. The panic that set in when Woodson left the game, and then didn’t return. Matthews popping a ball loose and Des Bishop eating it like a hungry school of piranha spotting a tasty cake-eater in the water. Rodgers continuing to throw to receivers that refused to hang onto the ball, no matter how perfect the throw. Tramon WIlliams losing his cool at a bad time. Ben Roethlisberger removing his helmet and making the horse snort noise after BJ Raji planted him deep into the Dallas ground.
It was all friggin’ amazing. And strangely, when it was over I didn’t feel euphoric. I felt relieved. Like we dodged a bullet. But that’s how the Packers have done it this year. Build up a nice lead, then squander it away in the second half, me wearing a traffic pattern in my carpet as I pace the room, punctuating my nervous energy with occasional screaming bursts or throwing my hat at the floor. And the Superbowl was no different. It was looking like it’d be the Atlanta playoff game all over again, over by halftime, it was anything but a walk.
The Steelers failed to convert on 4th down, with 53 seconds or so left on the clock.
Time for the V formation.
Time for me to finally exhale.
Hey gang? I’m going to the big celebration thing today. If I was smart I’d have bought all the tickets I could and scalped them, but I’m not smart. So I bought one ticket. Maybe I’ll see you there? Look for me. I’ll be the guy wearing the Packer jacket. 😉