Scott Pioli signed on to be the GM of the Kansas City Chiefs. Is that really a step up from his power-sharing arrangement with Bill Belichick? The Chiefs must have a solid foundation of young players. I do recall in the early 90s when I lived in Kansas City that the fans were starved for a winner and got one with Marty Schottenheimer. I thought that Pioli’s first move would be to fire Herm Edwards, aka mister “We Can Build on This!”
Thoughts on the NFC Championship: I know the media has already given the Eagles the bye to the Super Bowl. I say, not so fast. The Eagles didn’t have to worry about Plaxico Burress last Sunday, therefore they teed off on the Giants run game and that was that. This weekend, their goal will be to bottle up Larry Fitzgerald, who’s put on a performance reminiscent of Steve Smith for the Panthers in the 2005 playoffs. It’s rare for one player to lift his team to victory, like Chris Johnson did for the Titans until Ed Reed tried to tear him in half. The Eagles have to shut down Fitzgerald and contain the resurgent Cardinal run game, which is performing like the Colt run D in their 2006 playoff run. Both teams have been inconsistent and are overdue for a stinker, like another team I’ll talk about in a moment. Hopefully we’ll see both of them at their best, but most likely one will perform above expectations and take a very unlikely NFC Championship.
Thoughts on the AFC Championship: Steelers, see what Chris Johnson did against the Ravens. Try to emulate that. A noteble state from the game is that the Ravens had 30 rushing attempts for 50 yards. That’s called sticking with your game plan. Flacco, who has deservedly earned a reputation for not making the big mistake in the playoffs, will come back to Pittsburgh, where he couldn’t beat Tyler Palko for the starting QB job. Now he gets to face the number one defense on a very cold day. I want to say Steelers all the way, but the Ravens have a way of pulling these games out. Please let my instincts be wrong this time.
The Braves finally got to overpay a pitcher when they signed Derek Lowe to a four-year deal worth $15 million a year. How many names can be spelled more ways than Derek/Derrick/Derreck? The Braves added three pitchers at age 32 and beyond. There’s nothing scarier to fans than an old, injury-prone pitcher. This year’s tepid free agent market in baseball has been a non-stop yawn fest to date.