I have a problem. My problem is that I am very, very emotionally tied to my favorite sports teams. More so the Bengals than to the Buckeyes, the Bearcats, the Reds or the Cavaliers. When the Bengals lose, it tends to ruin my day.
When the Bengals lose 37-0 in their only prime-time game of the season it apparently puts me into a silently burning rage. I want to believe that our boys went out there never intending to show anything that will be of use to them next week in the playoffs, that there was never any intent to do anything of worth other than make it into the playoffs which had already been achieved.
What I saw was a cute little tiger cub that had the unfortunate luck of wandering onto the runway at Meadowlands Memorial Airport and got splattered all over the runway by a 747.
Stop, take a deep breath. Force yourself to think clearly, you overly passionate sports blogger.
Answer me a question that I've been knocking around since about 7:20 this evening. Do the Jets secretly have a stash of footballs that are made out of brown pebbled Flubber that they reserved for this game? It sure as shootin' looked like it, didn't it? At least two drops from Chad, one from Caldwell, one from Cosby. Laveranues Coles had a fantastic one-handed grab tonight. Maybe we can take one of those flubber balls home on the plane tonight though to reserve for passing plays where Dan Coats is an eligible receiver. The man caught a pass AND a kickoff tonight. Had I not been sitting on the floor I would have fallen out of my chair. Maybe he wears special gloves with Flub-tack on them every week?
As infuriating as tonight's game was, I have to believe that we won't see a repeat next week. I have to. There's no way possible that the team would let the horrific display of "football" that we saw last week on the field for their second playoff game of the decade, is there?
Mental Dialogue: Forget the last 19 years. This is a different team. Forget the last 19 years. This is a different team. Forget the last 19 years...please?
Okay, good things to take from tonight's game. Well...good thing to take from this one. Thomas Jones ran the ball 27 times for only 78 yards with a long of 9. That's a 2.8 YPC. A bit more bothersome was the 92 yards on 4 carries that Bruce Smith popped off out of the Wildcat. I'll assume that having Chris Crocker, Robert Geathers and the all-important Domata Peko back next week will largely take care of our defensive issues.
Losing Pat Sims for the playoffs sucks. It just does. Tom Nelson being out of the game was almost a blessing when all was said and done, the poor kid was just getting abused out there tonight. He's great to have on special teams, but he's just not the playmaker on defense that I had hoped. I'm very much more confident having Kyries Hebert back there in a pinch at this point than Tom Nelson.
Okay, everyone. Let's take a collective deep breath and do what we need to do to forget about tonight's game as soon as possible. We've got a game to watch next weekend.
A Pragmatic Bengals Fan