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Tuesday, 03 February 2015


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"*Ctein stopped reading at the asterisk"

This would be the perfect opportunity for us to plan his surprise party ;-)


I live in the Puget Sound area and it has been nuts for the last few weeks here. Seeing that I never follow sports of any kind and I'd want to be paid to watch it on TV the whole thing has become tedious. At least by now I found and associated with those in my circle of friends (a surprising number by the way) who are of the same mind. So it was not a total waste of a rainy Sunday.

Listening to sports talk radio I keep hearing about how terrible the call for the pass was.
Had it worked we would be hearing about how imaginative and daring the play was. To pass when they expected a run.
Success excuses a lot of stuff.

Was sitting at a cigar store, and half the old duffers that came in said they were there to watch Katy Perry...plus one on that...

I spent the SuperBowl time slot photographing actors for an upcoming play at Zach Theatre. Not a single actor, make up person, crew member, art director, artistic director, costume designer or choreographer mentioned football. Not even once.

It was a wonderful time in which to practice the craft of photography and the big event cut down on the usual Austin traffic. It seems indulgent to spend 4 hours of a day to watch approximately 17.5 minutes of "sports" action. An amazingly inefficient process.

I just heard a good joke. The Nationwide dead-kid commercial should be extended to say: I also never had a chance to give Marshawn Lynch the chance to run with the ball.

Shouldn't it be Super Bowl?

[But it is. (Heh, heh...old magazine editors really like the Internet.) --Mike]

I am a Patriots fan. During the last sequence I was texting my mom from my living room chair, trying not to swear out loud and wake my dozing six-year-old. Went like this:

Call timeout!!!
What the hell
(interception happens)
What do I know
(Mom responds: OMG)

I'll never know why they didn't run the ball. Belichick may have even let them score like he did in the last Super Bowl. I thought, you gotta be kidding me, we're going to lose...again...because of a totally lucky freak catch. And then...Jesus. OMG.

And no, we didn't deflate any footballs.

Enchilada ?? Is that a feature of Mexian Football ?? We don't get that sport (one way or the other :-) here in Denmark...

With the ball on the 1 yard line I exclaimed that another Bowl was about to end, this time after a remarkable drive by the Seahawks. My wife, however, replied, "I dunno, never count your score until it's on the board." I tush-tushed her just a second before ... well, you know. Of course she gave me that knowing smile that wives perfect.

I suspect that this could have been an excellent finger-wagging teaching moment for a child. I'm so happy none were nearby.

First time I'd watched the Super Bowl, or any football, in thirty years. The wife suggested a Super Bowl party for the just the two of us! I was thinking we'd get cheese dip or maybe something even better and all I got was "that" play!

First, a caveat: I liked both teams. I didn't have a preferred winner. Really!

For me, the real story of the game wasn't the miracle catch at the five yard line, or that the 'Hawks decided to pass instead of run, or that the pass was intercepted. Those were all thrilling caps on an already thrilling game. But the real story, to me, was the fact that the Patriots came back from 10 down. When the Pats went down by 10, a sense of inevitability seemed to settle over the field and on the sidelines. You could see it in the player's faces on both sides. To compound that feeling, there was the sense that Brady's 2 interceptions had left him cautious and hesitant, just when you needed him to step up. But step up he did, as did the rest of the team. You hear a lot of talk about mental toughness in sports, and most of it is just cliche, but I think Brady and the Patriots epitomized mental toughness on Sunday. Especially Brady. That's the real story of the game, in my humble opinion. In any event, what a game!!

It's a football game, somebody wins, somebody loses. There will be another season in a few months.

As a Ravens fan, I can completely sympathize, as the Pats beat us the same way (although in our case it was more Joe Flacco misreading a defense and unnecessarily chucking the ball all the way downfield into a nickel defense on second and 3 with a minute and a half to go — at precisely the down, distance and point on the field where we predictably do that, and when we had been running the ball in 10-yard chunks all day). Pete Carroll’s explanation showed the football coach’s curious combination of overthinking and lack of thinking at the same time.

I read a very good explanation of why calling a pass on second down was in fact the right thing to do...

(a) a completion wins the game.
(b) an incomplete pass stops the clock - this is key, because the seahawks only had one timeout left...
... for the complete details, I think that the column was on Vox.

My problem is that they telegraphed the pass. Why not fake the handoff to Lynch..? With him running away from Wilson at the snap, the pat.s had one less thing to worry about.

It turned out this way so that they could experience what our Packers did a couple weeks ago.

Dear Mike,

Truth-- if it weren't for the asterisk that caught my eye (I'm a sucker for footnotes) I'd have stopped at the picture of the football.

pax / Ctein

One of the best Super Bowls ever, spoiled but a very bad call, it reminded me of that Bills vs Giants game with Norwood missing the field goal. I think Belichick could have played a great part in that decisive call. Everybody thought Seattle was going to score when they got to the 1 yard and yet he didn't stop the clock. Why don't call a timeout and give your team a few seconds to look for a desperate field goal after the Seahawks score? My guess is that by letting that precious seconds go he put the pressure on Carroll, who was expecting a timeout from the Patriots. Clever and gutsy.

"...curious combination of overthinking and lack of thinking at the same time." -- phil

I don't play or watch much football, but in tennis we call that a brain cramp.

Terrific game, maybe the best Super Bowl ever. The fans of the team that loses should see it as a tragedy (as opposed to a farce, like last year's game) because that's what gives the whole thing its piquancy.

I moved away from Minnesota a couple of years ago, and I'm looking for a new NFL team to adopt, one that I can see on TV here in New Mexico. I never liked the Vikings much anyway (I moved to Minnesota in my thirties and never had any special early attachment to the team.) So, I've been looking for a team that has lots of local fans that I can relate to. I hate both Denver and Phoenix, which leaves me with...the Cowboys. I never really hated the Cowboys, although I understand a lot of people do, so I'm leaning that way. But, it's a tough decision. Maybe I'll consult Ctein.

[Don't, he'll just give you the name of a Roller Derby team to root for. And you must not root for the Cowboys; we couldn't be friends then. Sure you don't want to root for the Bears? They have everything, from the deep tradition to the highest success to the most interesting ways of being tragic. The ultimate rooter's team. And you can't beat the fight song. --Mike]

The Pats looked so good for most of the first half. Their defensive backs were amazing during that time - Wilson had all day to throw and nobody to throw to. I read that it was "the most lopsided tie" ever at the end of the half, which is silly but true in a way.

Credit Seattle for making adjustments on offense.

There is an article on Grantland.com that attempts to explain that last call, but even the author of the article doesn't quite believe his own explanation. Still, it does put things in perspective.


It was a fascinating game to watch, from start to finish.

Oh good. Someone else hasn't bothered to hook up their TV.

No TV reception here either at the Penultimate Homely House, but the internet view on the 7" tablet was surprisingly decent. Just don't pop out for a snack, the radio was on by the kitchen and it was about three plays ahead of the video stream!

I agree, either Lynch or a Wilson sneak right behind him three times. What I wonder now is if this move alienates your moody running back, he feels disrespected & moves on? It's not like he's going to tell you in a press conference after all.

Simple case of the Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away. Giveth on the 10 yrd line, taketh away on the 1.

I grew up a Pats fan in the late 70s into the mid 80s mostly suffering with the relatively bungling teams with Steve Grogan, et. al. And who can forget that Super Bowl blowout against the Bears.

Of course, this all changed in 2001 and we have been treated to an unexpectedly long run of mostly excellent teams. Having lived through the Helmet Catch I can identify with some of the pain that the Seahawks fans must be feeling. But just imagine the hypothetical where the 'hawks DO punch in that score. That would have made three straight Super Bowl losses where the Pats lost a lead because of just one or two plays (2007 was flukey, this year was flukey, 2012 was just because the team D was bad).

NFL football is a cruel game where a terribly small sample size determines your long term fate.

I almost still can't believe it happened.

1. Seattle scored in similar situation earlier in the game.
2. The Pats defender flatout beat the receiver to the ball. A brilliant defensive play, not a bad offensive play.
3. Presuming Seattle would have scored on the run is pure fantasy. It didn't happen and we'll never know.
4. The only reason seattle was even there was curtesy of repeated epic failures by the Packers: settling for fieldgoals twice, failure to run out the interception at the end of the game, dumb personal foul that gave Seattle a scoring oppotunity which they didn't mess up. That's four.

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