Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

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    Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

                            2011 Christmas REPORT CARD

         Another great year for us Patriots' fans is drawing to a climax with the NFL play-offs looming. It's been all good thus far this season,. On Christmas Eve, Santa Claus came through for us, with a come from behind, 27-24 win over the Miami Dolphins. With this win, Santa gift-wrapped for us probable home field advantage throughout the AFC play-offs, a bye-week to get some of the walking wounded, like Logan Mankins (knee), Matt Light (ankle), Sebastien Vollmer (back), Wes Welker (knee), Patrick Chung (foot), Brandon Spikes (knee), and Devin McCourty (psyche) healthy.
         That said, here are my grades:

    I. Santa Claus: The Pats weren't being good in the first half against Miami, and this almost cost them big-time with Santa. Fortunately, the "Jolly One" looks at the big picture, and gave the Pats 30 minutes to redeem themselves. In that time, the Patriots were on their best behavior...and were very good. As a result, Santa showered them with the aforementioned gifts. 
         But, there was more. Santa has bestowed upon Patriots' fans the following gifts:

    1.) The 2011 Indianapolis Colts: The play of the "Keystone Colts" throughout this season has been a source of great humour and joy to Patriots' fans everywhere. Watching Curtis Painter trying to impersonate an NFL QB, watching Indy head coach Jim Caldwell on the sidelines, searching for a clue, and reading some of the most inane and ridiculous comments from Plow-horse leader, Bill Polian, has been a laugh a minute! Thank you, Santa!

    2.) The 2011 N.Y. Jets: After that disappointing playoff loss last season, beating the Rexies handily twice, wresting the AFC East from them again, and seeing them on the verge of failing to reach the play-offs this year has been a joy to behold. Thank you, Santa!

    3.) The Demise of the "Dream Team": The 2011 Philadelphia Eagles seemingly signed every free agent available during the off-season. Dubbed the "Dream Team" by themselves, and, later, by the press, they crashed and burned...failing to make the NFC play-offs. The highlight to the season was the 38-20 pasting that the Patriots put on them, in Philly, in Week 12. Thank you, Santa!

    4.) Tebow-mania Silenced: The Tim Tebow phenomenon in Denver seemingly had no bounds. I admire Tebow as a leader, and for his deep seeded religious values. Love him or hate him, the guy is genuine. He has become the "Rocky Balboa" of the 2011 season. Unfortunately, this led to the media talking Tebow, all the time. The record setting seasons of Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees, and Tom Brady were all but ignored as ESPN constantly paid homage to Tebow. That is, until Tom Brady and the Patriots went into Denver in Week 15, and trounced the Tebowites, 41-23. Thank you, Santa!
    SANTA'S GRADE: A 

    II. ELVES: The "little green men" behind the scenes enabled Santa to perform his above listed magic. Throughout the season, Santa's helpers did the grunt work, freeing up the "Jolly One" to make his lists, check them twice, and determine which NFL people were naughty or nice. In the end, Bill Polian, Jim Irsay, Rex Ryan, LaDainian Tomlinson, Jeff Laurie, DeSean Jackson, John Elway, and those annoying, obnoxious Denver Bronco fans who insist on screaming "IN-COM-PLETE" everytime the opposing team fails to complete a pass, were slated for sacks of coal:

    1.) Bill Polian: The Elves worked behind the scenes, encouraging the likes of Indy Star columnist Bob Kravitz and Indy Blog "Stampede Blue" to expose Polian for the charlatan and blowhard that he really is;

    2.) Jim Irsay: The "Thief From Indy", instead of having visions of sugar plums dancing in his head, had visions of ridiculous, 5th grader like tweets. These were a source of disenchantment and embarrassment to Indy fans throughout the year;

    3.) Rex Ryan: Realizing that Ryan was writing checks with his mouth that his players couldn't cash, the Elves torpedoed any further credit-line for the Fat Man, and foreclosed on the Jets' season;

    4.) LaDainian Tomlinson: The years of mindless whining after the 2004 playoff loss to the Patriots have caught up with the fraudulent "LT". They'll be no further extensions to his career in 2012 or beyond;

    5.) Jeff Laurie: The Philadelphia Eagles' owner fell in disfavor for his greed after he signed just about every top free agent, during this off-season. For his efforts, he received a lump of coal under his tree, in the form of his playoff-less "Dream Team";

    6.) DeSean Jackson: Mired throughout the season in a contract dispute with his team, Jackson seemingly put his talents on the back-burner, and instead focused on remaining healthy through this season. His attitude was a key factor in the Eagles grossly underachieving this season. His "reward" will likely come in the form of less than enthusiastic contract offers, once he becomes an unrestricted free agent;

    7.) John Elway: His tepid enthusiasm for Tim Tebow was less than Christian, to say the least. Elway's conduct netted him Tebow-mania. John now has a QB that he clearly doesn't want, who is the most popular player on his team, by far;

    8.) Bronco Fans: Apparently, Santa is as annoyed with them as we are. As a result, the Elves helped foster Tebow-mania. After weeks of building up false hopes with the Bronco faithful, the air is being let out of the Tebow balloon, in the form of a 41-23 loss to the Patriots, and an embarrassing 40-14 demolition at the hands of the Buffalo Bills. Now, Bronco fans must face up to former favorite son Kyle Orton, who they turned on just a few months ago. Orton will now have the opportunity to get the last laugh on the IN-COM-PLETE crowd:
    GRADE: A;

    III. REINDEER: Timely delivered all of the above gifts on Christmas Eve:
    GRADE: A. 

         LOL!!!!
       
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    In Response to Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD:
    [QUOTE]                        2011 Christmas REPORT CARD      Another great year for us Patriots' fans is drawing to a climax with the NFL play-offs looming. It's been all good thus far this season,. On Christmas Eve, Santa Claus came through for us, with a come from behind, 27-24 win over the Miami Dolphins. With this win, Santa gift-wrapped for us probable home field advantage throughout the AFC play-offs, a bye-week to get some of the walking wounded, like Logan Mankins (knee), Matt Light (ankle), Sebastien Vollmer (back), Wes Welker (knee), Patrick Chung (foot), Brandon Spikes (knee), and Devin McCourty (psyche) healthy.      That said, here are my grades: I. Santa Claus: The Pats weren't being good in the first half against Miami, and this almost cost them big-time with Santa. Fortunately, the "Jolly One" looks at the big picture, and gave the Pats 30 minutes to redeem themselves. In that time, the Patriots were on their best behavior...and were very good. As a result, Santa showered them with the aforementioned gifts.       But, there was more. Santa has bestowed upon Patriots' fans the following gifts: 1.) The 2011 Indianapolis Colts: The play of the "Keystone Colts" throughout this season has been a source of great humour and joy to Patriots' fans everywhere. Watching Curtis Painter trying to impersonate an NFL QB, watching Indy head coach Jim Caldwell on the sidelines, searching for a clue, and reading some of the most inane and ridiculous comments from Plow-horse leader, Bill Polian, has been a laugh a minute! Thank you, Santa! 2.) The 2011 N.Y. Jets: After that disappointing playoff loss last season, beating the Rexies handily twice, wresting the AFC East from them again, and seeing them on the verge of failing to reach the play-offs this year has been a joy to behold. Thank you, Santa! 3.) The Demise of the "Dream Team": The 2011 Philadelphia Eagles seemingly signed every free agent available during the off-season. Dubbed the "Dream Team" by themselves, and, later, by the press, they crashed and burned...failing to make the NFC play-offs. The highlight to the season was the 38-20 pasting that the Patriots put on them, in Philly, in Week 12. Thank you, Santa! 4.) Tebow-mania Silenced:  The Tim Tebow phenomenon in Denver seemingly had no bounds. I admire Tebow as a leader, and for his deep seeded religious values. But, love him or hate him, the guy is genuine...and was the "Rocky Balboa" of the 2011 season. But, the media was all Tebow, all the time. The record making seasons of Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees, and Tom Brady were all but ignored by the ESPN Tebow worship. That is, until Tom Brady and the Patriots went into Denver in Week 15, and trounced the Tebowites, 41-23. Thank you, Santa! SANTA'S GRADE: A   II. ELVES: The "little green men" behind the scenes enabled Santa to conduct his above listed magic. Throughout the season, Santa's helpers did the grunt work, freeing up the "Jolly One" to make his lists, check them twice, and determine which which NFL people were naughty or nice. In the end, Bill Polian, Jim Irsay, Rex Ryan, LaDainian Tomlinson, Jeff Laurie, DeSean Jackson, John Elway, and those annoying, obnoxious Denver Bronco fans who insist on screaming "IN-COM-PLETE" everytime the opposing team fails to complete a pass got theirs from the Elves, as follows: 1.) Bill Polian: The Elves worked behind the scenes, encouraging the likes of Indy Star columnist Bob Kravitz and Indy Blog "Stampede Blue" to expose Polian for the charlatan and blowhard that he really is; 2.) Jim Irsay: The "Thief From Indy", instead of having visions of sugar plums dancing in his head, had visions of ridiculous, 6th grader like tweets throughout the year. These were a source of disenchantment and embarrassment to Indy fans throughout the year; 3.) Rex Ryan: Realizing that Ryan was writing checks with his mouth that his players couldn't cash, the Elves torpedoed any further credit-line for the Fat Man...and foreclosed on the Jets' season; 4.) LaDainian Tomlinson: The years of mindless whining have caught up with the fraudulent "LT". The Elves vetoed extending his career; 5.) Jeff Laurie: Philadelphia Eagles' owner Jeff Laurie fell in disfavor for his greed...after he signed just about every top free agent, during this off-season. For his efforts, he received a lump of coal under his tree, in the form of his playoff-less "Dream Team"; 6.) DeSean Jackson: Mired throughout the season in a contract dispute with his team, Jackson seemingly put his talents on the back-burner, and instead focused on remaining healthy through this season. His attitude was a key factor in the Eagles grossly underachieving this season. His "reward" will likely come in the form of less than enthusiastic contract offers, once he becomes an unrestricted free agent; 7.) John Elway: His tepid enthusiasm for Tim Tebow was less than Christian, to say the least. Elway's conduct netted him Tebow-mania, and having a QB that he clearly doesn't want being the most popular player on his team; 8.) Bronco Fans: Apparently, Santa is as annoyed with them as we are. As a result, the Elves helped foster Tebow-mania. After weeks of building up false hopes with the Bronco faithful, the air is being let out of the Tebow balloon, in the form of a 41-23 loss to the Patriots, and an embarrassing 40-14 demolition at the hands of the Buffalo Bills. Now, Bronco fans must face up to former favorite son Kyle Orton, who they turned on just a few months ago. Orton will now have the opportunity to get the last laugh on the IN-COM-PLETE crowd: GRADE: A; III. REINDEER: Timely delivered all of the above gifts on Christmas Eve: GRADE: A.        LOL!!!!    
    Posted by TexasPat3[/QUOTE]

    Great TP.  There are a few things that still remain before the playoffs to make Santa's gifts complete:

    1 - A win over Buffalo
    2 - The Jets being knocked out of the playoffs
    3 - The Giants being knocked out of the playoffs (I hate NY)
    4 - Indy to beat Jacksonville with St. Louis losing to SF (Out of Luck)

    Then:
    5 - West Division to beat Pittsburgh and Houston to beat the other West Division.
    Us to beat.
    6 - The Pats to beat that wild card and Houston to beat Baltimore
    7 - The Pats to beat Houston
    8 - Both GB and NO losing their divisional rounds
    9 - SB #4 for the Pats
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    Hey Tex-
    By far your best post ever.  Well done!
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    In Response to Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD:
    [QUOTE]                        2011 Christmas REPORT CARD      Posted by TexasPat3[/QUOTE]

    Nice year's end summary. Especially like your take on Polian's actions. He's a lying weasel and its good to see his karma catching up with him.

    Likewise Philly. What's wrong with those people? Not to overwork the karma concept but maybe vick's enormous negative karma burden is bringing down the whole team. But, really, who cares? The NFC East scares no-one.

    Then there's the team we all most love to hate, the NY fatboys. Its been a genuine pleasure to see them failing at every level in the second half. I loved watching rex grasping for  a positive spin, each excuse becoming weaker and more lame, his beginning of the year ridiculous SB proclaimations becoming more and more laughable.

    Looking forward to sitting back in the wild card round and watching as our potential opponents pummel each other. Its a tie between rapelisberger and suggs as to the one opposing player who I'd most like to see on the ground with a broken bone sticking out of his leg.
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    Great job, TP3.  Always a pleasure to read your report cards.
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    Awesome!  Well done TexasPat
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    In Response to Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD:
    [QUOTE]i think the Vikings are going to get Luck.  They aren't sold on Ponder.
    Posted by Patsfansince1966[/QUOTE]

         Thanks to their 33-26 win last weekend over the Redskins, the (3-12) Vikings are out of the running for Luck. It comes down between the Rams and Colts. An Indy win and another Rams' loss clinches the #1 overall pick for St. Louis. If both the Rams and Colts won, or lose...the Colts hold the tie-breaker for the #1 overall pick (strength of schedule).  
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    Another way to keep us smiling!!  Thanks, TP!
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    In Response to Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD:
    [QUOTE]Another way to keep us smiling!!  Thanks, TP!
    Posted by agcsbill[/QUOTE]

    Agreed. Well delivered TP.
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

     I think you have been ignoring Brady this year also with all your C's and low B's you have been giving him. He is quietly having one of the greatest QB seasons in the history of the NFL and with this defense they have needed all of it.
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    In Response to Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD:
    [QUOTE] I think you have been ignoring Brady this year also with all your C's and low B's you have been giving him. He is quietly having one of the greatest QB seasons in the history of the NFL and with this defense they have needed all of it.
    Posted by ccnsd[/QUOTE]

         Uhhh...why don't you go back and check out my report cards for the year. I don't think you'll find many "C"s or "B minuses" for Tom.
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    classic work on this one tex - happy holidays. A treat to read.
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    Now that was funny! Happy New Year Tex!

     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    5 - West Division to beat Pittsburgh and Houston to beat the other West Division.
    Us to beat.
    6 - The Pats to beat that wild card and Houston to beat Baltimore
    7 - The Pats to beat Houston
    8 - Both GB and NO losing their divisional rounds
    9 - SB #4 for the Pats

    If the #4 beats the Steelers, then NE won't play a WC team in the divisionals, it would be either Denver or Oakland (who they've already beat in their own stadiums). I'd rather that be Denver as the Raiders would probably take too many cheap shots! And if both the Packers and Saints lose in the divisional (not likely, but possible) then it would likely be the 49ers in Indy. SF may have to beat both GB and NO to get there, but at least they'd get the Saints at Candlestick. Maybe they could turn out the lights while Brees was on the field! Don't see the "Boys, Giants, Falcons, or Lions beating any of the top 3 NFC teams! Then Tom would get to go for his fourth ring against the team he followed as a boy. Although someone better block Aldon Smith or it could be disaster! I'd take Gronk over Patrick Willis as well. And the "cherry on top" would be the fact that they'd win and hoist the Lombardi at Lucas Oil Stadium, which would probably drive die-hard Colts fans (like UD) totally nuts if that happened!
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    In Response to Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD:
    [QUOTE]5 - West Division to beat Pittsburgh and Houston to beat the other West Division. Us to beat. 6 - The Pats to beat that wild card and Houston to beat Baltimore 7 - The Pats to beat Houston 8 - Both GB and NO losing their divisional rounds 9 - SB #4 for the Pats If the #4 beats the Steelers, then NE won't play a WC team in the divisionals, it would be either Denver or Oakland (who they've already beat in their own stadiums). I'd rather that be Denver as the Raiders would probably take too many cheap shots! And if both the Packers and Saints lose in the divisional (not likely, but possible) then it would likely be the 49ers in Indy. SF may have to beat both GB and NO to get there, but at least they'd get the Saints at Candlestick. Maybe they could turn out the lights while Brees was on the field! Don't see the "Boys, Giants, Falcons, or Lions beating any of the top 3 NFC teams! Then Tom would get to go for his fourth ring against the team he followed as a boy. Although someone better block Aldon Smith or it could be disaster! I'd take Gronk over Patrick Willis as well. And the "cherry on top" would be the fact that they'd win and hoist the Lombardi at Lucas Oil Stadium, which would probably drive die-hard Colts fans (like UD) totally nuts if that happened!
    Posted by bubthegrub2[/QUOTE]

         Now is not the time to worry about the Saints or the Packers. Let the Pats' win their two playoff games to get through the AFC. Then we'll see what's ahead in the SB. Of the playoff teams in the AFC, the Pats' match-up worst against the Baltimore Ravens.

         My guess is that the play-offs will break down as follows:

           NFC                         AFC
    #1: Green Bay;      #1: New England
    #2: San Francisco; #2: Baltimore
    #3: New Orleans;   #3: Houston
    #4: NY Giants;       #4: Denver
    #5: Atlanta;           #5: Pittsburgh  
    #6: Detroit.            #6: NY Jets

    NFC: Round #1: Detroit @ New Orleans; Atlanta @ Giants:
    AFC: Round #1: NY Jets @ Houston; Pittsburgh @ Denver  

    NFC: Round #2: NY Giants @ Green Bay; New Orleans @ San Francisco.
    AFC: Round #2: NY Jets @ New England; Pittsburgh @ Baltimore.

    NFC Title:  New Orleans Saints @ Green Bay Packers
    AFC Title:  Baltimore Ravens @ New England Patriots

    SB:           Green Bay Packers v. Baltimore Ravens...winner...Green Bay Packers
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    NFC: Round #1: Detroit @ New Orleans; Atlanta @ Giants:
    AFC: Round #1: NY Jets @ Houston; Pittsburgh @ Denver  

    NFC: Round #2: NY Giants @ Green Bay; New Orleans @ San Francisco.
    AFC: Round #2: NY Jets @ New England; Pittsburgh @ Baltimore.

    NFC Title:  New Orleans Saints @ Green Bay Packers
    AFC Title:  Baltimore Ravens @ New England Patriots

    SB:           Green Bay Packers v. Patriots...winner...Patriots
     
    We can take the Ravens....and GB
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    So you're picking the Ravens to beat the Patriots at the Razor? I'm not sure they will get past the Steelers. True, they did win both regular season games. But usually the Steelers have their number once January rolls around. I'm also not sold on the Saints being able to win in Candlestick. That 49ers defense is very good, and if Gore can run the ball effectively (which isn't all that hard against the NO defense) and keep it out of Brees' hands...you never know. Sf has forced more turnovers than any team in the league by a huge margin. If they can do it to the Saints they have a great shot at sending them home. Now the Packers are another story. If the 49ers had homefield I'd give them a shot. But at Lambeau Rodgers would have to have his worst day of the year. And the way things are going for Green NJ I wouldn't be surprised if the Fins ended their playoff hopes on Sunday. That would put the Bengals at Denver, where I'm not sure they would be a sure winner. I'd love to see the Patriots and Packers face off in a rematch of SB31. That would probably be the highest scoring SB ever, eclipsing the Dallas/Buffalo game with 69 points. The last team with the ball would win, and the punters would have the day off!
     
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    Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD

    In Response to Re: Christmas 2011 REPORT CARD:
    [QUOTE]So you're picking the Ravens to beat the Patriots at the Razor?
     
    RESPONSE: It's really much too early to make such predictions. Let the Pats' take care of the Bills Sunday, first and foremost. With home field advantage throughout the play-offs, I'll take my chances with Brady and the Boys. But, of all the teams in the AFC, the Pats seem to match up the worst against the Ravens. I don't have to remind you about what happened in 2009.  

    I'm not sure they will get past the Steelers. True, they did win both regular season games. But usually the Steelers have their number once January rolls around.
     
    RESPONSE: I don't know if "Big Ben" will be fully recovered from his high ankle sprain to be at his best. Ray Rice is a much better RB than anybody that the Steelers have. Rookie WR Torrie Smith gives the Ravens an added dimension of a deep threat.

    I'm also not sold on the Saints being able to win in Candlestick. That 49ers defense is very good, and if Gore can run the ball effectively (which isn't all that hard against the NO defense) and keep it out of Brees' hands...you never know. Sf has forced more turnovers than any team in the league by a huge margin. If they can do it to the Saints they have a great shot at sending them home.
     
    RESPONSE: Based on what I've seen of the Saints lately, they are peaking at the right time. They have playoff experience that the 49ers do not have. Darren Sproles has made the Saints a legitimate SB contender, again. 

    Now the Packers are another story. If the 49ers had homefield I'd give them a shot. But at Lambeau Rodgers would have to have his worst day of the year.
     
    RESPONSE: If the Pats can get by the Ravens or Steelers, they'll have to beat either Green Bay or the Saints, in a dome, for the title.  That's a mighty tall order. 

    And the way things are going for Green NJ I wouldn't be surprised if the Fins ended their playoff hopes on Sunday.
     
    RESPONSE: Could be.

    That would put the Bengals at Denver, where I'm not sure they would be a sure winner.
     
    RESPONSE: I don't see Denver beating the Chiefs this weekend. The only way that they'll get into the play-offs is if San Diego can beat the Raiders in Oakland. Then, Denver will "back-in" to the AFC West title, with an 8-8 record. 

    I'd love to see the Patriots and Packers face off in a rematch of SB31. That would probably be the highest scoring SB ever, eclipsing the Dallas/Buffalo game with 69 points. The last team with the ball would win, and the punters would have the day off!

    RESPONSE: Beating the Saints or Packers will be a tall order, with their horrible secondary. It would be as big an upset as when they beat the "Greatest Show on Turf" Rams, in 2001.  
    Posted by bubthegrub2[/QUOTE]
     
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