February 6 - Super Bore
I'm willing to bet that you're a lot like me.
You've watched the Super Bowl for years. You've waited with anticipation
for kickoff. You've gone to Super Bowl parties and were actually sad to
see the game end.
I used to be that way. After Super Bowl XL, I'm not so sure.
There was no Montana-to-Taylor moment in this game, save for a trick play from Antwaan Randle-El
to Hines Ward. There was no Brady-esque coming out party for an up-and-coming quarterback in
this game, as Ben Roethlisberger was 9-of-21 for 123 yards and had two interceptions.
Most importantly, there was no sadness when the game ended. The only emotion that washed over
me was relief.
I was relieved that the hype was over. I was relieved that Jerome Bettis got his ring, because
otherwise the media would have had to dig for a story, and we all know how much they love to do
that. Finally, I was relieved that the four-plus hours I had wasted on this travesty was coming to an
This was the most lackluster Super Bowl in recent memory for a myriad of reasons. The
convergence of sloppy play, horrible officiating and overhype was brutal. The reason behind the two-
week delay between the conference championships and the Super Bowl is more transparent than
Tony Kornheiser's hairdo, but the desire for cash and hype has killed the product on the field, making
what is supposed to be the best game of the year into what was aptly described as “The Super Blow”.
Maybe I'm bitter because I didn't have a “dog in the hunt”, so to speak. My team has gone 9-23 over
the last two seasons. Perhaps it's that I'm a traditionalist. I don't need two weeks of buildup for a
game whose participants I have analyzed for weeks and weeks, and I certainly don't need an entire
day of even more pre-game analysis. I'm not interested in pre-game, halftime and post-game rock
concerts. All I ask for is good football, and I didn't get it.
The thing that appears to have the fans most upset about this year's contest is the officiating.
Officiating obviously doesn't make a team lose, and to claim a fix is an exercise in futility, but the
“phantom” holding call at the Steeler one yard line and the offensive pass interference on Darrell
Jackson were an embarrassment to the league. NFL officials have been a point of contention on The
Writers Radio for weeks, and while we kept hoping things would improve in the league's biggest
showcase, they did not. To not have Ed Hochuli or Mike Carey on the field in the championship game
is ridiculous, and Mike Pereira and his crew need to address this issue.
I would never have said this at the time, but the best thing that ever happened to baseball was the
1994 strike. Though it took four years for the game to truly recover, the face of the game was
changed. Perhaps labor strife in the NFL and an uncapped year in 2007 could be the best thing to
happen to the NFL.
Maybe I'll start watching the Arena league. At least I could then have fun while watching bad football.