19 December 2005

2005 Week 15 Recap

Eagles at Rams, Sunday, December 18, 2005

We won. We won ugly against a bad team (how many famous QBs do you know of out of Harvard? Thought so...), but we won.

Chef Spouse and I were in NYC celebrating our anniversary (lucky 13), so I only got home in time to see the very end of the game, for which I'm grateful, because reading the play by play recap at nfl.com, I think I would have blown an artery if I'd watched the whole mess live. There were two great plays: Moats' 59 yard run for the first Philly TD, and McMahon's short pass for the second TD. Dawk also came up with a few big defensive plays, including a very important interception late in the third quarter. But McMahon kept throwing to Rams, or getting taken down and dropping the ball, and our lack of ability to do much of anything on offense, on the ground or in the air, nearly gave the game to the Rams with 3 minutes to go. Fortunately, their offense is as inept as ours (low blow), and we hung on to our one point lead. Although we managed to screw up taking a knee at under a minute with a false start. Good lord! How do you screw up taking a knee? At least McMahon didn't fumble the ball again.

So far my predictions for the end of the season are coming right along: loss to the Seahawks, loss to the Giants, win against the Rams. Now if we can just beat the Cardinals and then the Redskins at home on New Years' Day (please, guys, I'm going to be at that game), I'll be at 1.000 for the last 1/3 of the season. Not bad. Maybe there's a career in sportscasting for me yet. Of course, the 'Skins are likely to be playing for a wildcard spot on New Year’s Day, which doesn't bode well...

Around the rest of the NFL, the 'Skins moved ahead of the Cowboys into the number 6 playoff spot in the NFC by TROUNCING them at home. Joe Gibbs managed to beat the 'Boys twice this year. I think even if the 'Skins lose their playoff spot to one of the NFC South teams, 'Skins fans will consider this a successful season.

Speaking of the NFC playoff picture, it remains interesting. Other than the division leaders (Seahawks at 12-2, and Giants, Panthers and Bears all at 10-4), one team (Bucs) is at 9-5, and FOUR teams are at 8-6 ('Skins, Cowboys, Falcons, and Vikings). With two games left, the NFC is still wide open. Seattle's the only NFC team that's even officially clinched a playoff spot, much less the division or a bye.

Contrast that with the AFC: all the division leaders have at least clinched a playoff spot (Broncos), with the Pats, Bengals, and Colts all wrapping up their divisions. And there are really only 3 other teams in contention for playoff spots: Steelers, Jaguars, and Chargers. (The Ravens are currently killing the Packers, 21 to 3, not that it matters in the least.)

Speaking of the AFC, the Colts' streak is over, dropped somewhat surprisingly to the Chargers. Even though they have LaDanian Tomlinson, the Chargers have been totally inconsistent this year, but their win over the Colts demonstrates that they're probably a better team than their 9-5 record would indicate. Peyton Manning may not be 100% though. He took a spill during the Colts' win against the Jaguars last week - didn't get hit, just tripped over his own feet and seems to have turned his ankle - but that does raise questions about the rest of the season. Super Bowl XL is the Colts' to lose, but if Manning's not 100%, they very well might lose it to the Seahawks. Saturday afternoon, Christmas Eve, the Colts are playing the Seahawks at the same time as we’re playing the Cardinals. I can't promise which I'll watch live and which I'll TiVo.

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