NFL Game of the Month!


January 2007

Sports picksJanuary 29, 2007

The sports world has lost a champion today. It was reported that embattled Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro was euthanized ending eight months of grueling operations, recoveries and setbacks.

Since wining the Kentucky Derby last year and capturing the hearts of thousands of racing fans, Barbaro was thought to have shot at horse racing’s Holy Grail – the Triple Crown. But 14-days after Barbaro’s six-and-a-half furlong victory at the Derby, an awkward step early-on at the Preakness shatters three bones in the champion’s right hind leg.

Miraculously, Barbaro recovers from a five hour surgery to repair the damage. What followed was a drama that unfolded in front of the entire nation and race fans, sports fans and animal lovers watched and cheered for the charismatic colt.

But a full recovery was not in the cards as Barbaro suffered through infections that ultimately caused his owner’s to make the decision to end his suffering.

As man’s first work-related vehicle, horses have held a special place in our lives. People that aren’t animal lovers understand and revere the bond between horse and rider. We all have a place for these noble creatures. Whether your favorite horse was Trigger or Silver (my favorite is whatever Clydesdale brings me a cold Budweiser), these creatures are a part of American history.

People loved Barbaro because he was a champion, and deserved to be remembered as any other athlete in this situation would be. Yes, he was an athlete and should be treated as one. When Barbaro went out, he did so as a champion as the Kentucky Derby winner – he etched his mark on history before earning his reputation as a fighter.

The doctors, owners and trainers that worked to help him recover should be remembered for doing all they could to help – like any team would. Ultimately, it was determined that Barbaro would never return to a normal life and possibly never be pain free.

Now the final chapter in the Barbaro story has been penned and another champion rides off into the sunset.


Football picksJanuary 26, 2007

The teams are set and the Super Bowl media hype is in full force. 

One question that lingers near the center of that perfect storm is “Did Peyton Manning finally get the monkey off his back by beating the Patriots?” 

The answer is a resounding no – but he is one step closer. 

The Colts finally topped the Patriots to earn their shot at the Vince Lombardi trophy. Peyton Manning exorcised the Tom Brady and the Patriots demons to get his team in the big game excuse me, I mean THE big game. 

You see Manning is no closer to getting that monkey off his back now, than he was at the beginning of the season. Just because Manning got that “W,” in the in the win column against the Patriots does not mean that he has nothing left to prove. He’s got one game left. 

Beating New England was a stepping stone, a brushstroke of what Manning must do to solidify his legacy in the NFL. Winning Conference Championships is simply not enough. 

Being from Denver, I know a thing or ten about high-profile QBs and wining (or not winning), the big one. John Elway was dogged for his entire career for not being able to win the Super Bowl. In a playing class with other hall of fame QBs like Joe Montana, Steve Young and Dan Marino, Elway was often considered at the top of that list – with an asterisk.* 

*Best QB never to win a Super Bowl. 

Now if Manning fails to hoist the Vince Lombardi Trophy on February 4, he will be fitted for his star for another season. 

Regular season wins, passing records, prolific quarterback-receiver tandems won’t mean a thing, if Manning don’t get that ring – do wop, do wop. 

The fact is, is that when the Colts started training camp at the beginning of the season you can bet “beating the Patriots,” wasn’t the No.1 goal at the top of Peyton’s to-do list and just getting to the Super Bowl isn’t going to cut it for the NFL’s poster boy. 

Manning’s got all the peripherals – funny commercials, records and a giant ape of a contract. We all know the pedigree so success was never viewed in terms of “if,” but rather “when?” That time is now.


Sports picksJanuary 18, 2007

My NFL season officially ended December 31, 2006.

As San Francisco kicker Joe Nedney split the uprights in overtime at Invesco Field at Mile High Stadium, he cleaved my orange and blue heart in twain.

I am a lifelong fan of the Saints but I am finding little enjoyment in the NFL’s postseason.

For some reason, the Broncos loss on New Year’s Eve and the subsequent murder of Darrent Williams, has cast a pall on the rest of the season.

After a seasoned removed from a spot in the AFC Championship my team failed to live up to the elevated expectations of the Mile High City.

So, it is with a heavy heart that I bid adieu, to the NFL campaign and get ready for the next big season.

Every season, this sport supplies some of the best story lines. Every year there is the emergence of a long-shot that makes a run at championship glory. This season promises to be no different.

I am talkin’ tennis season baby!

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Football picksJanuary 11, 2007

Tony Romo sat patiently on the Dallas bench. It had become a place oh so familiar, as he watched and learned, knowing one day he’d get his opportunity to take the field. Well when coach Bill decided he had seen enough of Drew Bledsoe and the ball and chain around his leg, he decided to free the one around Tony’s and called him into the game. Romo responded like a savvy seasoned pro. Dallas went from mediocre, to everyone thinking perhaps this team may be bearing rings come February. Tony Romo rose from obscurity, to the front pages of all the Sports pages. He went from unknown to hugging and kissing American Idol winner Carrie Underwood before a game. He was leading America’s team to the promiseland. Could he get it done in the playoffs, and really become king of Dallas?

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