Archive for January 24th, 2011



In the NFL, it was Conference Championship Sunday.  Two games, and the winners would decide who will play in the Super Bowl.

First up, it was the much anticipated rivalry between the Green Bay Packers and the Chicago Bears.  This game has been talked about all week, and, apparently, it has been one of the highest priced tickets in Chicago EVER!  And that includes Michael Jordan’s glory years with the Bulls.  Remember, it’s one thing to be in the NFC Conference Championship Game, but it’s another to have to beat your long-time rival to get to the Super Bowl.  Coming into the game, Aaron Rodgers had been phenomenal, leading the Pack to two straight road wins.  As for Chicago… they’re defense is seemingly impenetrable.  So what would happen?

Green Bay got on the board quickly behind an Aaron Rodgers touchdown rush.  7-0 Green Bay.  Then, Chicago’s offense struggled, giving the ball back to the Packers.  Their new found running back James Starks would take it in for another Packers TD.  Then things went downhill for the Bears.  Their starting QB Jay Cutler went out with a knee injury, so backup Todd Collins came in.  Unfortunately Collins was horrendous and also got hurt.  So, suddenly, their 3rd string QB Caleb Hanie found himself as the only hope for the Bears in the NFC CHAMPIONSHIP!!!  Wow, that’s every kid’s dream — to lead a major team from behind and send them to the Super Bowl!!!

Hanie actually played pretty well .  He marched them down the field, which led to a running TD.  14-7 Packers.  But then he threw an errant pass directly into Packers nosetackle BJ Raji for a Packers touchdown.  21-7 Packers.  However, Hanie didn’t quit.  He led the Bears back down the field and connected with Earl Bennett for another Bears TD.  21-14.  Amazingly, the Bears had life.  And the Bears defense stepped up stopping Aaron Rodgers, giving Hanie a chance to actually tie the game.  He looked good out there!  Unfortunately, in the end, his inexperience showed.  The Packers blitzed and a nervous Hanie tried to hit a receiver in traffic, which led to another Packers interception.  And that was all she wrote.  The Green Bay Packers are headed to the Super Bowl!  Green Bay 21, Chicago 14.

Next up, it was the New York Jets visiting the Pittsburgh Steelers.  This was the marquee match-up of the day — a battle of two stout defenses.  For the Jets, this is their 2nd straight appearance in the AFC Championship, and that’s quite the remarkable feat.  The Steelers started out red hot in the first half.  Their running back Rashard Mendenhall ran it in for a TD, and then Big Ben Roethlisberger ran in another TD.  14-0 Steelers.  The Jets, on the other hand, could not get their offense going.  The Steelers completely shut down their running game.  Then the Steelers D blitzed Mark Sanchez, forced a fumble, and ran it in for a touchdown.  Suddenly it was 21-0 Steelers.  The Jets got a field goal in the first half, but that was it.  It was 24-3 at halftime.

But, in the second half, the Jets came storming back.  Their running game turned on to help them advance the ball down the field, and Mark Sanchez looked like a winner out there.  He connected with Santonio Holmes for a long 45-yard touchdown.  24-10.  The Jets had it on the goal line, but the Steelers stepped up and stopped them 4 downs in a row.  The Jets defense then forced a fumble and got a safety.  24-12, and the Jets would get the ball back midway through the 4th quarter.  This time, Sanchez led the Jets down field and hit Jerricho Cotchery for a touchdown.  24-19 Jets with over 2 minutes to play.  They had a serious chance, they just had to stop the Steelers.  Although, Ben Roethlisberger has 2 Super Bowl rings and knows how to win games.  On a crucial 3rd and 6, Roethlisberger scrambled and hit a speeding Antonio Brown for the first down.  The Jets couldn’t stop the clock, and the Steelers just took a knee 4 times to clinch the game.  Pittsburgh 24, NY Jets 19.

It’ll be The Green Bay Packers vs. the Pittsburgh Steelers in the Super Bowl in two weeks.  It should be fantastic!

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