Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Thank God it's Over...

Thank the lord. The NFL season is over, finally.

Not only did the Browns devolve from 10-6 to 4-12 but we had to witness the Steelers take home NFL Championship number six and an AFC Championship Game where they faced off against the Ravens. We should be thanking our lucky stars that we at least have the Bengals… what’s that? We finished behind them, too? F@#$.

The only thing we can really hang our hats on is that many are asking questions about the Appalachian Inbred title once again. Where was the clipping call on James Harrison’s Pick Six to end the first half? Did he even get into the endzone? Why didn’t Santonio Holmes get a personal foul for using the ball as a prop after his tippy toe TD? Why wasn’t the last play reviewed? It looked like a fumble but why not make sure? Was James Farrior’s 15 yard penalty for his Dwayne Rudd impersonation part of it?

I’ll channel by inner Lt. Frank Drebin one more time just for shits and grins [time stamp 6:30 to 7:07]…

“The attempt on Nordberg's life left me shaken and disturbed, and all the questions kept coming up over and over again, like bubbles in a case of club soda. Who was this character in the hospital? And why was he trying to kill Nordberg? And for whom? Did Ludwig lie to me? I didn't have any proof, but somehow, I didn't entirely trust him either. Why was the 'I Luv You' not listed in Ludwig's records? And if it was, did he know about it? And if he didn't, who did? And where the hell was I?”

Bottom line they still won the game and made plays when they had to. But after number five was shrouded with some referee controversy in of itself and numbers one through four have always had a steroid cloud around them, number six doesn’t seem totally clean either. But they should be saluted. Being a Browns fan the proper way to salute them is to extend your right arm and extend your middle finger. To paraphrase Ron Burgundy, “GO F@#$ yourself, Pittsburgh.”

So now we can worry about the more important things like the painting over of murals, the lack of any witty repartee from the head coach and soccer in England. These are what are really important in the NFL. Not the need for an impact draft with only four selections. Not the fact that the owner hired the head coach before the GM. Not the fact that we have no President of Football Operations. We painted a wall. “We can build on this!” as Herm Edwards would say.

No offense to Joe Thomas, Shaun Rogers or Ryan Pontbriand but it’s over. Have fun in Hawaii boys, don’t get injured but thank God this stink pickle of a 2008 NFL season is complete.

I can now relax and focus on the fun prospects for the spring. First off, the Cavs’ quest for an NBA Title and LeBron’s drive for an MVP trophy. The way the team actually enjoys playing together is magnificent to watch and they are all very likable characters unlike that Appalachian Inbred team (and fanbase). If they can lock up home court over the Celtics and Magic their odds of making our dreams come true in June and July are increased dramatically. The excitement builds with each game the Wine and Gold tip off.

The Tribe breaks camp with just as many questions as there are about Super Bowl XLIII. Is Travis Hafner going to be anywhere near to himself, circa 2004-2006? Can Cliff Lee and Fausto Carmona anchor a shaky starting rotation? Can Masa Kobayashi be effective in his second MLB season? By effective I mean not appear in any alternative lifestyle Japanese adult films again.

Will Asdrubal Cabrera give me reason to text people with “AS-MAN! AS-MAN! AS-MAN!” on a routine basis? How the hell is this whole first base/catcher/designated hitter platoon thing going to work out? Will Kerry Wood, Mark DeRosa, Joe Smith and (gulp) Carl Pavano be key pieces to the Indians’ puzzle?

I have a very weird feeling about the Indians in 2009. Like a good weird. I can’t explain it. It isn’t like in 2007 when I thought they had a shot or in 2008 when I thought they’d win it all. It’s different, but I can’t put my finger on it. But I do know on thing, it’s a hell of a lot better than I felt 24 hours ago when it was still the NFL season. Thank the heavens that it is over.