Philly Fantasy Sports Top 10 Super Bowl XLVII Commercials

After the phenomenal Super Bowl XLVII with the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens, John Harbaugh and his quarterback Joe Flacco overcame the surge — and the 34-minute blackout at the Superdome — to win the game 34-31.  With the San Francisco 49ers mismanaging the clock and Colin Kaepernick‘s inability to run a two-minute drill effectively, the Ravens scraped one out in the final minutes of the game.  After all that commotion, the commercials were much the same.  Close to the second half, the real commercials decided to show up, and with that, these are Philly Fantasy Sports Top 10 selections for best Super Bowl XLVII commercials:

Oreo “Whisper Fight”

I enjoyed this one. Subtly funny.

M & M “Love Ballad”

What are friends for when you have friends like Ms. Chocolate

Taco Bell “Viva Young”

Not funny in a funny kind of way but charming in a Taco Bell kinda way.

Toyota RAV 4 “Wish Granted”

The Rock Milk “Morning Run”

Volkwagen “Get In. Get Happy.”

Minnesota people. Represent.  Not just about Harley Davidson motorcycles and bratwursts.

Bud Light “Journey”

I liked this one. Perhaps the voodoo dolls caused the power outage. Or not.

Deion Sanders NFL “Leon Sandcastle” 

Funny. Very funny. Kind of a jilt on Randy Moss, Terrell Owens and others.

Kia Motors “Hot Bots”

Kia Motors got double honors this Super Bowl.  I think the advertising people left Volkswagen and came here.

Kia Motors “Space Babies”

This one had lots of charm to it — and the babies faces were priceless as they rocketed to Earth.

This is Philly Fantasy Sports Top 10 commercials for Super Bowl XLVII.  What do you think?  Do you agree?



NFL 2012-13 Season in Review: The ABCs of the NFL

Baltimore Ravens Joe Flacco After the Super Bowl Win Over the San Francisco 49ers

With the Baltimore Ravens winning Super Bowl XLVII over the San Francisco 49ers 34-31, the NFL season has offiically come to an end, and Ravens Joe Flacco and Ray Lewis finally got their rings.  With it, the 2012-13 season of the NFL brought in some interesting twists and turns as the free-agency system has finally matured and transformed the NFL into a season of instability and chaos.  The inclusion of the 2011 rookies also helped as they have created a NFL, a mixture of the old guard and the new.

  • A is for Andy Dalton. Cincinnati Bengals Andy Dalton may have the Donovan McNabb curse.  For the second time in the playoffs, he once again fell flat with the Houston Texans.
  • Y is for Young Guns.  Indianapolis Colts Andrew Luck, Washington Redskins Robert Griffin III, Seattle Seahawks Russell Wilson and San Francisco 49ers Colin Kaepernick all changed their teams for the better.  At least for this season. They all have potential to become elite quarterbacks in their own right in the future.
  • A is for Adrian Peterson. Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson has always been a a workhorse for the team like the St. Louis Rams Steven Jackson.  But this season he proved himself more than ever.
  • P is for Peyton Manning.  Even though he’s not with the Indianapolis Colts anymore, he is still an elite quarterback who makes something out of nothing.  While he’s with the Denver Broncos, he’s going to keep the team competitive, if not better.  He’s already taken advantage of Demaryius Thomas, Denver’s equivalent to Reggie Wayne.
  • R is for Rex Ryan. For the most part this season, he stayed out of the news this year. Surprisingly.  No more supposed Super Bowl parades, and the quarterback controversy between Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow was kept to a minimum.  However, there was some questionable choices during the mid-season involving his roster of injured quarterbacks.  
  • R is for Read-Option. With the Wildcat formation going the way of the Tim Tebow comes the resurrection of the read-option in the NFL.  This is not a long-term gimmick for the NFL as the Super Bowl showed, but it has served well this season.
  • E is for Elite. The New England Patriots and the Green Bay Packers earned their spots in the playoffs. Again.  With both Aaron Rodgers of Green Bay and Tom Brady of New England, both quarterbacks are performing at a high standard.
  • S is for Second Tier. The Atlanta Falcons, the Baltimore Ravens, the Houston Texans, the Cincinnati Bengals and the Seattle Seahawks all earned their spots in the playoffs this season as well.  These teams don’t have elite quarterbacks, but they are excellent as a team. Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco did rise above when it counted against New England Patriots Tom Brady….
  • D is for Defense. Like in previous seasons, stout defenses win games when the games remain tight. The Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers have proven that.
  • F is for Fundamental. Those teams who planned ahead finally got their due — the San Francisco 49ers and the Seattle Seahawks.
  • A is for Andrew Luck.  Well, the Indianapolis Colts got their Andrew Luck, a quarterback that is decisively better in the long-term than Washington Redskins Robert Griffin III in my opinion.  However, he buckled under the Baltimore Ravens defense and rookie jitters.
  • R is for Robert Griffin III. Robert Griffin III has proven himself to be Washington Redskins’ franchise quarterback.  But with him participating in the Wild Card game against the Seattle Seahawks with an injured knee was a bad idea transformed into a worse idea.  
  • C is for Coaches. This was a dismal season to be an NFL coach. The firings of coaches from some teams, like the Cleveland Browns and the Kansas City Chiefs, was expected.   These teams don’t have a record of keeping coaches — and keeping their teams in competitive shape.
  • H is for Harbaugh. The Harbaugh brothers are remarkably intelligent, and neither of them particularly cater the media.
  • J is for Joe Flacco. Despite winning the Super Bowl, in my opinion, he is still a second-tier quarterback.  He is lucky to have a stiff defense helping him when he needs it most.

This season was indeed intriguing as the elite fell to some of the second-tier teams.  Now onto next season…

Andy Reid and the Philadelphia Eagles: The End of an Era

Former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Andy Reid gets handed a gameball in his last press conference as a head coach

It’s officially the end of an era for former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Andy Reid with a devastating record of 4-12 for the 2012 regular season.   Eagles owner Jeff Lurie stood by his word as he bid Andy Reid farewell after an 8-8 record for the 2011 season.  For those fans clamoring that we should not have let Andy Reid go since he was the Eagles franchise most successful coach to date, the Eagles organization is still a business.  And if Jeff Lurie kept Andy Reid for another season as a coach or otherwise, Lurie would be made to be nothing more than a paper tiger at best and a pushover at worst.  In as much as some of us criticize Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder for being a pushover, Jeff Lurie would made to look much worse.

Former Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Terrell Owens and quarterback Donovan McNabb

Andy Reid became head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles on January 11, 1999.  It was not without criticism upon arrival in Philadelphia after he was lured from the Green Bay Packers. In 2000, the Philadelphia Eagles reached the playoffs with a 11-5 regular season record.  In 2001, the chain of playoff wins came.  With quarterback Donovan McNabb, running back Brian Westbrook and safety Brian Dawkins coming to maturity, the Philadelphia Eagles was the team to beat in the NFC East with conference championships in 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2004.  In 2004, with the acquisition of wide receiver Terrell Owens, the Eagles were at this time the cream of the crop of the NFC East and decisively the NFL.  The Eagles made it to Super Bowl XXXIX but was ultimately defeated by Tom Brady and his New England Patriots 24-21.  Donovan McNabb simply cracked under pressure in this Super Bowl, and with the Eagles essentially without a functioning quarterback, the New England Patriots won.

Former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jeff Garcia on the Sports Illustrated cover

After the stream of successes prior to 2004, the wheels of the truck began to fall off in 2005 as the disputes between Terrell Owens, Donovan McNabb and David Akers tore apart the team in the locker room. In 2005, the Eagles ended with a regular season record of 6-10.  In 2006, with the season-ending injury to Donovan McNabb in October, backup quarterback Jeff Garcia took over the reigns and nearly led the Eagles to another Super Bowl after defeating the Carolina Panthers, the New York Giants and the Washington Redskins. However, as Jeff Garcia led them closer and closer to the Super Bowl, Donovan McNabb came out of the woodwork and became disruptive from the sidelines in a sense.  This antagonism ultimately led to Jeff Garcia being released — and Donovan McNabb as well.

In 2008, the Eagles made their way to the NFC Championship game whereupon they lost to the Cardinals 32-25. The Eagles traded Donovan McNabb to the Washington Redskins in 2009, and after McNabb’s departure, then backup quarterback Michael Vick was named starting quarterback in 2010.  Vick’s most notable game as a Philadelphia Eagle was the decimation of Donovan McNabb and his  Washington Redskins on the night of November 15, 2010. On that night, Michael Vick was unleashed as he had four passing touchdowns and two rushing touchdowns with a passer rating of 150.7.

Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick after another loss

After Michael Vick’s spectacular run in 2010, the wheels began falling off the truck again.  Most teamis had developed a gameplan for Vick’s weaknesses and tendencies as the New York Giants and the Dallas Cowboys both built sufficient defense gameplan templates the season before.  The other teams in the NFL basically followed suit, adjusting their templates as needed.  And with Michael Vick not holding much better himself in the 2011 and 2012 regular seasons, the Philadelphia Eagles demise was gradual and climaxed in this regular season with compounding losses with ridiculous amount of turnovers.

Juan Castillo as Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator

With the loss of defensive coordinator Jim Johnson on July 28, 2009, the Philadelphia Eagles defense never was the same.  Sean McDermott took over, but he could never build the Eagles defense as Jim Johnson could.  Soon, even he was released to the Carolina Panthers on January 5, 2011.  And with the acquisition of Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominque Rodgers-Cromartie in the 2011 season, it seemed like a recipe for success.  Perhaps under the traditional defense of Jim Johnson.  With Juan Castillo and his implementation of the Wide-Nine defense, the defense collapsed unto itself as there were no leaders, only highly-paid players.

Andy Reid should be remembered for the successes he bought to the Philadelphia Eagles organization.  With few notable candidates currently to fill the void, 2012 Maxwell Coach of the Year Penn State’s Bill O’Brien seems to be the leading candidate.  Quite possibly, in my opinion, the former Chicago Bears Lovie Smith would be a potential option as well.  In either case, the options are not particularly tempting.  Reid went over his head with the promotion of Juan Castillo as a defensive coordinator, the firing of Sean McDermott and the wholesale acquisition of free agents. These are perhaps what did him in as a head coach.  Most likely, he will be acquired by the Arizona Cardinals as Ken Whisenhunt was recently fired.  A change of scenery will do him good.  Will it bring him as much success with the Philadelphia Eagles?  Perhaps, but I remain skeptical.

My Top 10 Favorite Super Bowl XLVI Commercials

While the Super Bowl was a rematch of Super Bowl XLII, unfortunately, most of the commercials for the Super Bowl were mere regurgitation for the most part.  Some were inventive, and others were not.  With the car companies, after the American public initially bailed them out from their financial meltdown, it’s nice to know that nearly all of these car companies have money to burn for the Super Bowl.  But we’ll leave that issue for another day…when your hangover is over.

Now to my top 10 list of favorite Super Bowl XLVI commercials:

2012 M & M’s “I’m Sexy and I Know It

This commercial was hilarious.  The red M & M made the show.

2012 Honda CR-V “Matthew’s Day Off”

Bueller, Bueller, Bueller. Enough said.

2012 Volkswagen “The Dog Strikes Back”

Fantastic commercial throughout from the dog to the Darth Vader chokehold in the cantina.

2012 Coca-Cola “The Catch”

Amusing Coca-Cola commercial. Best CGI commercial although not quite as inventive as the Warcraft commercial of the past Super Bowl.

2012 Toyota Camry “It’s Reinvented”

The Toyota Camry is reinvented and so is everything else.  Very creative and witty.  The best of the Super Bowl commercials in my opinion.

2012 Skechers “Go Run, Mr. Quiggly”

Funny commercial yet involving another dog.

2012 Doritos “Sling Baby”

Funny but wrong in all sorts of ways. What’s with Doritos launching projectiles in recent Super Bowls anyhow?  First, it was chips, and now, it’s babies.  I guess it’s a step up — sort of.

2012 Acura NSX “Transactions”

Jerry Seinfeld, Jay Leno and a 2012 Acura NSX.  Of the three, I want the NSX — in black please.  Amusing commercial nonetheless.

2012 Careerbuilder “Business Trip”

Not quite as inventive in the past, but the satire is perfect in today’s business world.  We all have office monkeys in our midst.  It is particularly entertaining when they decide to join for a business trip.

2012 Volkswagen “The Bark Side” 

One last commercial involving a whole slew of dogs barking the Imperial March.  The dog AT-AT and Chewie dogs made this commercial special.

Volkswagen made the best impression in this Super Bowl, but they always have creative advertising minds whether it’s the Super Bowl or not.  In my opinion, Toyota Camry’s “It’s Reinvented!” commercial was the tops.  After the slow-as-molasses (generally) Super Bowl between the New England Patriots and New York Giants, it’s time to prepare for next season’s hangover as the New York Giants win Super Bowl XLVI with the score of 21-17.

New York Giants vs. New England Patriots: Super Bowl XLVI Post-Game Analysis

After the singing of the national anthem by Kelly Clarkson, it’s time for the Super Bowl.  It’s a rematch of of Super Bowl XLII in which the New York Giants performed the 2007-2008 playoff run and ultimately a Super Bowl championship with a 17-14 win.  With New England Patriots Tom Brady third in quarterback rating in the playoffs with 105.8,  New York Giants Eli Manning is not far behind with 103.1.  On the Giants offense, the tandem running backs of Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs are presently second and fifth in the postseason in terms of running yardage, and their wide receiver corps of  Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz are ranked first and fifth.   With the offense as hot as it is, the Giants look like the team to beat, but the Patriots Tom Brady and head coach Bill Belichick are fired up and out for revenge and blood.

Now to the post-game analysis:

  • After a decent drive established by Giants Eli Manning via rushing of Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs, Eli Manning got sacked twice during the series by Patriots defensive ends Mark Anderson and Brandon Deadrick.
  • After an  intentional grounding call on Patriots Tom Brady in the end zone, the Giants get a safety to bring the score 2-0 with 9:00 in the first quarter.  The pressure from Giants defensive end Justin Tuck forced the call.
  • Sticking with the run by Ahmad Bradshaw, Eli Manning threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to Victor Cruz for a Giants touchdown to bring the score 9-0 with 3:29 in the first quarter.
  • After a 17 and 19-yard pass to Patriots wideout Wes Welker, Tom Brady’s drive stalled, and their kicker Stephen Gostkowski kicked a 29-yard field goal with 13:52 in the second quarter.
  • After defenses contested each other for most of the second quarter, Patriots Tom Brady threw a 4-yard touchdown pass to Danny Woodhead to bring the score to 10-9 Patriots with 15 seconds left until halftime.
  • The Madonna halftime show was incredibly average, but then again, this is Roger Goodell’s iron-fisted NFL.  Madonna has matured and become incredibly outdated and boring.
  • Led by a 21-yard pass to his wideout Chad Ochocinco and a 17-yard run by BenJarvus Green-Ellis, tight end Aaron Hernandez 12-yard touchdown reception brings the score 17-9 Patriots with 11:25 in  the third quarter.
  • With the Giants drive stalled at the Patriots 20-yard line, Giants kicker Lawrence Tynes kicked a field goal to make the score 17-12 Patriots with 6:47 in the third.
  • After steadily moving down the field with Brandon Jacobs, Bear Pascoe and Hakeem Nicks, the Giants drive stalled at the Patriots 9-yard line, and Lawrence Tynes kicked a 33-yard field goal to bring the score 17-15 Patriots with 4o seconds left in the third quarter.
  • After defenses contesting each other throughout much of the fourth quarter, with the New York Giants burning two timeouts and the drive led by Mario Manningham, running back Ahmad Bradshaw ran for a 6-yard touchdown to bring the score 21-17 Giants with 1:04 in the last quarter.

The first half was unusually subdued as both offenses could not gain any sort of rhythm.   However, it was the New England Patriots looked out of sync on both sides of the ball in the first half.  The safety from the end zone was perhaps the most pronounced mistake of the Patriots.  The first half of this Super Bowl mirrored the rematch of Super Bowl XLII — again, slow and low-scoring.

Unfortunately, the second half was much the same.  Both offenses were methodical as they moved down the field without any demonstration of their offensive firepower.  Both the Patriots and Giants had a few spurts of offense, but nothing of any significance until the last couple of minutes. It became a matter of tactics on both sides.  With Patriots coach Bill Belichick’s blessing, Giants Ahmad Bradshaw was allowed a free run for a touchdown with a minute left. Stunningly, the New England Patriots Tom Brady and his wide receivers faltered when it mattered most.

If you were watching this Super Bowl, you possibly burned through a lot of pizza, pretzels, chips and beer for your guests and yourself as slow as this game went generally.  It was like two trains in a wreck Matrix-style without Morpheus and the Twins on the roof…that is, until the last two minutes of the game.  The New York Giants won the game 21-17, overcoming Tom Brady and his New England Patriots once again.

Baltimore Ravens vs. New England Patriots: AFC Championship Playoff Post-Game Analysis

After the snow that cruised through the Northeast yesterday, New England Patriots Gillette Stadium finally got cleared as they host the Baltimore Ravens.  The Baltimore Ravens defense has their work cut for them as they are facing the first-ranked post-season quarterback in rating with 137.6, New England Patriots Tom Brady. Can the third-ranked Ravens defense during the regular season stem the second-ranked offensive juggernaut?  Can we have a post-drug-filled rock star in Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler not sing the national anthem in a post-season game?

Now to the post-game analysis:

  • With receptions to his wideout Julian Edelman, establishing the run with running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis and an unfortunate penalty for the Baltimore Ravens, Tom Brady’s drive stalled on the Ravens 11-yard line, and kicker Stephen Gostkowski kicked a 29-yard field goal to bring the score 3-0 at 5:52 in the first quarter.
  • After an interception of Tom Brady by Ravens cornerback Ladarius Webb and a hearty 40-yard pass to his wideout Torrey Smith, Joe Flacco‘s drive stalled on the Patriots 3-yard line.  Their kicker Billy Cundiff booted an easy 2o-yard field goal to tie the game 3-3 with 14:23 in the second quarter.
  • After a 20-yard pass to his tight end Rob Gronkowski and a facemask penalty on the Baltimore Ravens, BenJarvus Green-Ellis ran in for a 7-yard touchdown to bring the score 10-3 with 10:40 in the second quarter.
  • After a 20-yard pass to Lee Evans and a 37-yard pass to Anquan Boldin, Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco established rhythm against the Patriots defense and threw a 6-yard touchdown pass to his tight end Dennis Pitta to tie the score 10-10 with 6:11 until halftime.
  • With yet another drive stalled for the New England Patriots, Stephen Gostkowski kicked a 35-yard field goal to bring the score 13-10 with 3:04 left in the second quarter.
  • Continuing the same theme from the second quarter and much of the game, Stephen Gostkowski kicked a 24-yard field goal to bring the score 16-10 with 9:09 in the third quarter.
  • With a quick 29-yard touchdown reception from wideout Torrey Smith, the Baltimore Ravens took a one-point lead 17-16 with 3:48 in the third.
  • With a fumble by running back Danny Woodhead on a run-back from the Ravens kickoff that is recovered on the Patriots 28-yard line, kicker Billy Cundiff kicked a 39-yard field goal to bring the score 20-16 with 55 seconds left in the third quarter.
  • After a slow and steady drive to the Baltimore 1/2-yard line, Tom Brady finally got into the endzone with a rushing touchdown to bring the score 23-20 with 11:33 in the last quarter.
  • With the interception by linebacker Brandon Spikes and a 19-yard return and tip-interception to Ravens rookie cornerback Jimmy Smith in the endzone, these two interceptions were a show of defenses with eight minutes left in the game.
  • With a 4th and 6 at the Patriots 33-yard line, Patriots nosetackle Vince Wilfork snagged Joe Flacco and forced him to throw the ball away with 2:53 left in the game.  What a gamechanger!
  • With the clock ticking away and Joe Flacco at the helm, the drive led by the 29-yard reception by Anquan Boldin stalled at the New England’s 14-yard line, and surprisingly, Billy Cundiff missed the 32-yard field goal with 15 seconds left in the game.

With the first half in tow, the Baltimore Ravens were seemingly ready for New England Patriots Tom Brady had an interception.  Baltimore Ravens Joe Flacco demonstrated that he can throw against the porous Patriots defense and keep up with Tom Brady.  It was a great first half as both teams traded blows without letting up. Surprisingly though, Joe Flacco outperformed Tom Brady as Flacco had a 122.4 quarterback versus Brady’s 58.7 into the half.  The Patriots had the lead 13-10 at halftime, but the Patriots could not dominate the Ravens like they did with the Denver Broncos previously.

The stiff Baltimore Ravens defense imposing itself on New England Patriots potent quarterback Tom Brady and their offense in the second half.  Despite the tide turning in the Ravens favor several times, the New England Patriots kept it close, and the defense clinched down when it counted most with 2:53 left in the game on Ravens 4th and 6 on their 33-yard line.  Tom Brady and his New England Patriots squeaked this one out past the Baltimore Ravens 23-20.  However, Brady’s difficulties with the Ravens defense won’t go any easier with the San Francisco 49ers or the New York Giants.

The next game is already up as the New York Giants face the San Francisco 49ers for the NFC Championship game.  Tom Brady will have will the Super Bowl win past either defense in Indianapolis.  With 49ers quarterback Alex Smith and his clutch tight end Vernon Davis on one end and the Giants quarterback Eli Manning and his talented wide reciever corps on the other, this upcoming Super Bowl will be one to watch.

The 2011 Philadelphia Eagles Oddsbreaker: Super Bowl or Smoke and Mirrors?

Is this the year of the Super Bowl for the Philadelphia Eagles?

With all the media hype, it appears that the Philadelphia Eagles are already carrying the Vince Lombardi Trophy even before the season has formally begun.  I wouldn’t be so quick yet to place them on a mantle quite yet.  ESPN has already held the Philadelphia Eagles to placing third overall in this upcoming season, once said and done.  Luckily, they didn’t quite adorn Eagles starting quarterback Michael Vick with garlands in his 2010 overall season performance.  His 2010 performance ranked him 18th for his performance last season with the Total Quarterback Rating (QBR) of 66.6.  He is comparable to Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, New Orleans Saints Drew Brees and Pittsburgh Steelers Ben Roethlisberger in their 2010 regular season performances.  Surprisingly, Vince Young, his backup now, had a higher Total Quarterback Rating than Michael Vick in his 2009 performance with the Tennessee Titans.  He is ranked 12th and has a QBR of 69.2.

With this in mind, Michael Vick unfortunately collapsed last season in the Wild Card game as he could not withstand the Packers perplexing defensive packages with Clay Matthews at the helm.  The Philadelphia Eagles lost to the Green Bay Packers 16-21.  He had 292 passing yards, a touchdown, an interception and a mediocre 79.9 quarterback rating.  On the bright side (sort of), he had a better performance against the Green Bay Packers in their loss of 20-27 at Lincoln Financial Field on September 12, 2010.  He had 175 passing yards, a touchdown and a 101.9 quarterback rating.  Then again, Vick was healthier at that time, and he had not yet undergone the punishing defenses later on, like the New York Giants, the Chicago Bears and the Dallas Cowboys.

This season, after their week 7 bye, the Philadelphia Eagles offense led by Michael Vick will be in one punishing gauntlet of defenses.  The Dallas Cowboys and the New York Giants defenses again rear their heads, and they will have the Washington Redskins right before their bye week.  Unfortunately, I don’t believe Michael Vick can pull off that dominating performance last November 15th, but he should still be capable of winning the game.  Washington Redskins quarterback Rex Grossman commented that his team may be a sleeper since their acquisitions of wideouts Dante Stallworth and Jabar Gaffney.  They have also acquired Tim Hightower, one of the running backs of the Arizona Cardinals.  However, that game will be highly dependent on which Rex Grossman decides to show up for that game.

After week 7, if Michael Vick (and maybe Vince Young), can survive the gauntlet of defenses, the Philadelphia Eagles will be in good playoff shape, as their last regular season game is against the Washington Redskins.  Again, like last season, I would expect that Eagles head coach Andy Reid rest his starters by first half of that game.  If Michael Vick is still in one piece, he would be resting after maybe a series or two.

I don’t doubt that the Philadelphia Eagles can make the playoffs and quite possibly clinch the NFC East with a regular season record of 11-5 or 10-6.  Again, if they face teams with stiffer defenses in the playoffs, the explosive Philadelphia Eagles offense implode, like last season.  The playoff curse might again catch up to the Philadelphia Eagles, particularly in the NFC conference playoff game.   This time, you can’t blame it on William Penn or Donovan McNabb.  It may as well rest on the shoulders of head coach Andy Reid.

The Shortened 8 Game NFL Regular Season: The Victors and the Spoils

With the NFL preparing for the shortening of the  regular season, reducing the season from a 16 or 18 game schedule down to 8 games, well, at least there is a very little sliver of hope of something coming to fruition at all. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell however still intends on playing a full season.  On the other hand, the owners of the teams are less than optimistic and more than silent regarding the subject.  The Super Bowl is still scheduled at Lucas Oil Field Stadium in Indianapolis on February 5, 2012 with contingencies for a reschedule on February 12, 2012, if need be. In light of this, a shortened season will benefit some and not benefit others.

The Victors

  • NFL Players.  Before you say that, they would be victims in a shortened season.  Although financially they wouldn’t receive as much money overall for fulfilling their seasonal contracts, they would risk less physical injury in a shortened season.  This would immediately benefit most quarterbacks and running backs, particularly those prone to injury, into the regular season realistically. Detroit Lions Javhid Best and Philadelphia Eagles Michael Vick would be two that would benefit from a shortened season as both are prone to injury.
  • NFL Fans.  Although this would seem like a downfall for the fans, at this point, something is better than nothing in my opinion.  While a full schedule consisting of either 16 or 18 games would be great, an 8 game regular season schedule will do.  However, there is something amiss which I will discuss in the spoils.
  • Television Networks. Whether it’s the NFL Network, ESPN, Fox or any of the other television networks carrying the sport, any amount of playing time in football is better than nothing.  Without football, they bear a drastic loss in revenue from the television advertisers.  Additionally, it would mess up the fall television schedule for the standard television networks, and it could potentially spell disaster in ratings.  With less ratings come less advertising sponsorship, and with the way this economy is free-falling, anything is better than nothing.
  • Television Advertisers and Their Products.  Whether it’s beer, chips or aftershave, these advertisers would take a hit.  Although an eight-game season would help make up some of their losses, at this point, they should be grateful for any season whatsoever.  However, they should be able to recoup their losses in the Super Bowl.
  • Concession Owners and the Like. Those who work seasonal jobs in the stadiums and those who own concessions in the stand with their overpriced foodstuffs, they will have jobs in this economic recession.  Any employment is better than none with the 9% unemployment rate.
  • The Playoffs. It could potentially be a multiple-team horse race, even more than last season.  Even “bad” teams could potentially win the Super Bowl.
  • Standard  and Roto-Style Fantasy Football Players. Although these fantasy football players will be playing for a shorter season, if they play their cards right in their draft, they can still have a sufficient season for bragging rights. Those who play roto-style fantasy football will have more excitement in this shortened season, but the betting will be intense as their star player could be injured at any moment and cost them the season.

The Spoils

  • NFL Team Owners. This would be a lost season for profits in their billion dollar industry.  With less time, they would have deal with some frustrated NFL fans who would otherwise purchase memorabilia, jerseys and such if there was a full season.
  •  NFL Fans. Although some fans will still attend, there remains a question on the price of season tickets.  Will they be reduced pro rata since it is an eight-game season?  Or will they attempt to recoup their losses by still keeping it full price or at least close to it?
  • NFL Players. Some rookies and second and third year players will have their growth potentially stunted.  Also, they could remain bench material for an eight-game season despite their talent.
  • Super Bowl. As this relates to the team owners and the NFL in general, the Super Bowl itself could potentially be less of a spectacle (no more Black Eyed Peas!) than last year as the influx of money would be reduced.  With less money comes less draw potentially, and the Super Bowl halftime show could crash and burn even more than last season.
  • Standard and Dynasty Fantasy Football Players. With a shortened season, if someone had a bad draft in standard fantasy football, there would be insufficient time to pick the waiver wire and remain competitive.  Additionally, an early season injury or injuries could potentially ruin the season in one fell swoop. Additionally, dynasty fantasy football players would be hit as their players would have insufficient time to develop.

Although there hasn’t been any progress to date, at least, both sides are talking about the collective bargaining agreement and attempting to flesh things out.  However, blind optimism won’t work in this valley of legalities and courtrooms.  Realistically, we still have ways to go.

Fans of Super Bowl XLV Sue Over Seating: The Gluttony of Luxury Sweets

After the debacles of Super Bowl XLV of the Green Bay Packers and the Pittsburgh Steelers at Cowboys Stadium, ranging from Christina Aguilera‘s problems with the Star Spangled Banner to the disastrous techno-rap halftime show of the Black Eyed Peas, Super Bowl XLV’s problems began when seats of some 1,250 fans were pulled after the fire marshall deemed the temporary seating dangerous. All were moved elsewhere, and 400 fans watched the game on monitors or standing-room platforms.

The NFL attempted to acquiesce of these roughly 400 fans with money, tickets and merchandise.  Originally, the league offered $2,400 and tickets to next season’s Super Bowl, but this offer appeared less than charitable for these fans.  So the NFL offered a second option: they can choose to await for the conference championship to determine if they wish that year’s Super Bowl in the future, and they will be provided round-trip airfare and hotel accommodations.  But this appeared to be not enough compensation for these fans either.

Now these fans are suing $5 million in actual damages and unspecified punitive damages from the NFL, the Dallas Cowboys and their owner Jerry Jones for the faulty seating.  This class-action lawsuit will repayment of the full price of the tickets and travel expenses.

This lawsuit represents the state of American culture nowadays with its gluttony.  Whenever something doesn’t go as one wants it to go, the first and best option is often reliance on lawyers and their lawsuits.  From the blatant markings on cups of hot beverages to the sanitation of smoking, this is the culture of America and the rampancy of frivolous lawsuits. When the NFL attempts to give one better accommodations as apologies for their error, most of these fans still want more — more in terms of money.  Admittedly Jerry Jones own greed got the better of him in this issue, the NFL did attempt to accommodate these fans on his behalf with merchandise, money and future tickets.  These things didn’t satisfy these fans — only more money does, only their greed does.  From the outside, these fans are not gaining much of any sympathy, at least for me.  The repercussions of this lawsuit will be that the price of these tickets will only increase more for other fans in the future, and these tickets will now include more legalese on the back.  Saddening, just saddening.

My Top 5 Favorite Super Bowl XLV Commercials

This wasn’t a particularly good showing of television commercials during this Super Bowl XLV between the Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers. Aaron Rodgers came home with a Super Bowl ring, the Super Bowl MVP Award, a Camaro and the fourth Vince Lombardi Trophy for the Green Bay Packers. Then again, over the last few seasons, the creativity for Super Bowl commercials has dropped significantly.  The recession didn’t do these companies any favors.  Enough about the economy, here are my top 5 Super Bowl commercials.

Volkswagen Passat: The Force Commercial

This was one funny commercial.  The Darth Vader Imperial March background music just capped it off.  Being an avid Star Wars fan also helps, and who wouldn’t want that Darth Vader costume?

Pepsi Max: Love Hurts Commercial

This was a great commercial in my opinion, but some people have taken the social issue in this commercial a bit too seriously.

Pepsi Max: Torpedo Cooler Commercial

Simple yet effective in my opinion.

Coke: Dragon Siege Commercial

A short, brilliant tribute to World of Warcraft or Lord of the Rings.

Careerbuilder: Parking Lot Commercial

Haven’t us 9 to 5ers all been here before at some point in our fulfilling lives with our own respective office monkeys?

This is a bonus one since the Super Bowl is our game and our rules in our own houses. The multiple crossovers of television shows was brilliant from the oldies to the current ones.

NFL: Best. Fans. Ever. Commercial