Playoff Party—Conference Championship
The hour is now very late and Indianapolis is tired and just wants to go to bed. The cops came, twice. San Diego was arrested for possession, Baltimore left in a tirade of insults and even threw a rock at the front door, and many of Indy's ceramic kitty cats lay in pieces on the floor. In a fruitless effort to tidy up the place, Indy busies itself hoping New York will take the hint and finally leave. Fat chance.
"Why don't these teams respect me, Indy? How many ass whoopens is it going to take before I start getting a little cred around here?" New York asks, breaking a long and uncomfortable silence.
"I don't know, NY, maybe because you're young and never do well at these parties."
"Hey! What do you mean don't do well?" New York stands up and keeps a hand on its chair.
"I mean, you usually rub somebody the wrong way and get tossed, if you even get invited at all. Believe me, New York, things are a lot more quiet the years you don't show up. You never stop running that incessant mouth of yours, never," Indianapolis says, growing more impatient.
"What'chu say about my mouth?" New York asks puffing up its chest.
"Just get out of my house, New York!" screams Indy bracing for another fight.
These parties are evolution at work; the last ones there exhibit the necessary combination of strength, endurance and the ability to adapt to the unknown. They adapt to the unexpected variables of the NFL Playoffs.
The Colts are a strong team because they swell with talent, especially on offense. Their attack is so refined, so complex and efficient, that defenses must play a perfect game to win. The old saying goes that nobody's perfect; never mind 11 guys together trying to achieve perfection.
While Peyton Manning is in fact a human like anyone else and capable of a poor performance at any given time, he's as close to a robotic accuracy as any quarterback to ever play the game. His reads, his presence and his throws are unparalleled in the league and would make any team an immediate contender. Add the fact he's on a team with weapons all around him and in the end, it just doesn't seem fair.
That's what the Jets face Sunday; arguably the best quarterback ever at the top of his game with the Super Bowl on the line. Scary.
Then there's the deluge of good luck New York has enjoyed this winter; when will it dry up? They were given a backstage pass to the Playoffs in their last two games, soared higher and higher on fate's wings after each missed field goal and now find themselves 60 game-minutes away from the Big Enchilada; has Karma reversed the Jets' fortunes?
First, in due respect, lest New York find me and beat me to a pulp, the Jets are an impressive team. Their defense is one of those units that should have a fearsome nickname (might I recommend Ryan's Green Lions, or something), and their running game is fun to watch as it storms over linebackers in the second tier of the defense. The Jets brain-trust continues to out-plan its opponents, keeping rookie Mark Sanchez from committing the back-breaking mistake, and consistently frustrating enemy offenses with stealthy safety blitzes and dominant pass coverage. Darrelle Revis is a special player; a true game-changer that electrifies fans from the defensive side---something not easily accomplished. He not only has tremendous athletic ability, he has the rare game instincts of an Ed Reed; Revis is the best defensive player in the game (sorry Charles Woodson).
Not even this kind of defensive star-power, however, can take down Indianapolis. The Colts just finished Baltimore's run with little problems and the Ravens have lots of talent on D themselves. Perhaps if New York can score more touchdowns than they're used to they may have a shot, but expecting a low-scoring, grind-house game in the AFC Championship is likely amiss.
Colts 28, Jets 13