Posted: Monday December 18, 2006 2:40AM; Updated: Monday December 18, 2006 9:47AM
The Redskins held Reggie Bush to a 33 yards of offense in a 16-10 victory.
Chris Graythen/Getty Images
Special Teams Player of the Week
The Tampa Bay punt- and kickoff-coverage teams. They held the incomparable Devin Hester to six punt returns for 76 yards, and five kick returns for 76 yards with no touchdowns ... and the Bucs forced and recovered a Hester fumble. Heck of a day in the wake of Hester's terrific play in the last month.
Coach of the Week
Gregg Williams, assistant head coach/defense, Washington. Williams orchestrated a great defensive game plan to shock the Saints. His plan: never let Brees get comfortable, make sure Reggie Bush doesn't have any lanes to motor forward in the screen game, and beat the crap out of the Saints' receivers. Washington 16, New Orleans 10. Mission accomplished.
Goat of the Week
Terrell Owens, WR, Dallas. Spitting on the guy covering you? Classless. Surprise!
Stat of the Week I
I wrote last week about home teams being .500 in the last two playoffs. Let's take it one step further: In the last three postseasons, home teams are 16-14 in the playoffs. That's why, at this time of year, it's about who's playing better, not who's sleeping in their own beds.
Stat of the Week II
Since Oct. 1, last year's Super Bowl teams are a combined 11-11. In the last six weeks, Pittsburgh has lost to Oakland, and Seattle has lost to San Francisco, Arizona and San Francisco again.
I mean, who would have thought Seattle would go 1-3 against the Cards and Niners?
The vote is due New Year's Day and it got a whole lot closer this weekend.
1. Drew Brees, QB, New Orleans. The gap narrowed Sunday because Tomlinson was exquisite and Brees had an off-day. But the standings don't change. I'm not saying it's impossible they won't change, but I'm still leaning toward Brees on the basis of many things, one of them being where would the Saints be without him.
2. LaDainian Tomlinson, RB, San Diego. What can you say? Brilliant. Utterly brilliant in the win over Kansas City: 25 carries, 199 yards, two touchdowns. With two games left, he already has 31 touchdowns.
3. Peyton Manning, QB, Indianapolis. I know he's cold. But he's also not Jim Sorgi.
4. Tom Brady, QB, New England. The Pats cannot succeed without him. At all.
5. Jason Taylor, DE, Miami. Edges Gore and a cast of others for this incredible honor.
Enjoyable/Aggravating Travel Note of the Week
Class move by Delta Sunday morning on the 7 a.m. Atlanta-to-Newark flight. The 16 first-class seats on the MD-88 jet were filled, gratis, with military personnel headed home for holiday leave. Gratis.
Factoid of the Week That May Interest Only Me
Fort Worth Star-Telegram columnist and Dallas talk-show host Randy Galloway bailed Quincy Carter out of jail Friday. Carter got busted for misdemeanor possession of marijuana and spent 12 hours in jail before Galloway spent $160 late Friday afternoon to set him free.
Well, not exactly.
But before I get to that part of the story, how about Quincy Carter -- the quarterback of America's Team just three years ago, the last Dallas quarterback to play a playoff game, sitting in jail all day? His one phone call failed to get him bailed out. What kind of life is this? And what kind of life is it when he gets bailed out, he's so broke he has to ask a local TV cameraman to drive him home -- in his TV news van?
Galloway never much liked Carter, the player or the man, when he played for the Cowboys, and he started the let's-bail-him-out thing while hosting his afternoon-drive show on KESN. He had his producer look in the yellow pages for a Dallas bail-bond outfit, and of course they picked Cowboy Bail Bonds. The bail was $160, but the place said they'd cut the fee to $100 because it was Carter, and it was a Cowboy. Then, after the show kept mentioning Cowboy Bail Bonds, the owner called Galloway and said, Heck, we're getting $10,000 worth of free pub here; you don't have to pay us a dime.
And so Carter got his get-out-of-jail-free card. Somehow, sadly, I don't think it's going to be his last brush with the law.