1. Conference Championship Weekend
Tom: What a couple of games! I did not anticipate the blow out in the NFC or Brady’s inability to deal with the pressure. I was 50% calling this weekend which brings my total to 6-4 which puts me behind Josh at 8-2. My AFC game ball goes to Wade Phillips. His tweet summed it up “going unemployed to Superbowl”. He kept the Patriots guessing all day and it made the difference. My NFC game ball goes to Carson Palmer and his six turnovers. Even though the Panthers offense was tearing it up it seemed like the Cards weren’t really too far out of it but then here came Palmer saying HERES THE W.
Josh: The NFL playoffs have been exciting, and last weekend wasn’t any different. The Denver vs New England game was one to remember for sure. Brady was pressured nearly every play and still made plays. Also, he made several mistakes. When was the last time he threw for more interceptions than touchdowns in a game? Going into the game, I knew Denver’s defense was good, but not THAT good. Von Miller played on a different level than everyone else, making plays in both the run and pass game. In the NFC Championship, the Panthers continued to dominate. Cam Newton was spectacular (again) and he locked up the NFL MVP Award in the process. The Carolina defense, led by the best linebacker in the NFL in Luke Kuechly, completely shut down the NFL’s #1 offense. Overall, it was an exciting weekend and it is sad to see the season closing to an end.
2. Kathryn Smith hired by Buffalo Bills as NFL’s first full-time female assistant.
Tom: The Bills have been at the forefront of gender equality for some time now by hiring the first female scout and now the first female coach. I do not know much about Kathryn or her background but I am assuming she knows a thing or two otherwise she wouldn’t be given this job. Good for her and good for the Bills and good for the NFL moving forward.
Josh: The Buffalo Bills made history by signing Kathryn Smith as the team’s special teams coordinator. Buffalo Bill’s lineman Richie Incognito tweeted at Smith congratulating her, too. This shows me that the Bills have respected her for quite some time and are excited for her future with the team. I think this is a huge step for the NFL. Also, I think it is the start of something new. I feel more women coaching will become more popular in not just the NFL, but in all sports. It may take some time for everyone to get used to it, but we won’t even notice a difference. I wish Smith the best of luck and hope she proves everyone who is doubting her wrong!
3. Super Bowl Thoughts
Tom: I am looking forward to the Super Bowl, hopefully Ware gets his ring and Peyton can go out on his terms. I am a “defense wins championships” mentality and after the last performance I saw from Denver I would give them the trophy now. Carolina has a good defense, but the Broncos just beat the crap out of the best QB ever. I think Wade’s schemes will be too much for Cam and I think Peyton does just enough to get the win before his arm falls off. Also safe travels Don Crisman as he makes his way to his 50th Super Bowl!
Josh: Sadly, the 50th Anniversary of the Super Bowl is 2 weeks away. I am super excited for this matchup of the Carolina Panthers against the Denver Broncos. This is a weird matchup, too. Cam Newton, the future of the NFL, against Peyton Manning, one of all-time best quarterbacks to play the game. While Carolina is the early favorite, I have more confidence in Denver. Either way, both team’s have great defenses and are the best team in their respective conference. I will give my final breakdown of the game next week with my predictions as well. Best of luck to both of the teams!