Posted: Monday December 18, 2006 2:40AM; Updated: Monday December 18, 2006 9:47AM
Brett Favre threw three interceptions against the Lions, including two in the red zone, but he still led the Packers to victory.
5. I think we finally heard from Al Davis after another dreadful Raider loss. He was asked if he thinks he can turn the Raiders around. "Oh yeah,'' he said. "I'll get it done. I'll get it straightened it out. We've got things to do and it's gonna be big, but we'll get it done. I want to win, and I will. I always have." Uh, is there a timetable?
6. I think Terrell Owens deserves to be fined $25,000 and shunned, but not suspended, for spitting on DeAngelo Hall.
7. I think this is what I didn't like about Week 15:
a. Pregame pyrotechnics in domed stadiums: Stupid idea. Really stupid. In Atlanta on Saturday night, the fetid smoke from some high school fireworks when the Falcons entered the field a few minutes before kickoff lingered into the second quarter. Why pollute a stadium for five seconds of minor-league thrills?
b. Most overrated coverman in the NFL: DeAngelo Hall.
c. Come on, Devery Henderson. You get a 40-yard gift, a bomb, right in your hands, and you let it fall through? Playoff receivers don't drop balls that 9-year-olds would catch.
d. The problem with Kyle Boller was perfectly evident when he relieved Steve McNair against Cleveland. In the second quarter, with Derrick Mason having beaten his man down the right side, Boller threw a line drive with little air underneath it -- instead of floating it into the arms of Mason. He did make a couple of very good throws, but Billick's got to be concerned about handing Boller the reins for anything more than a cameo.
e. Terrible interception by Brett Favre into triple-coverage at the goal line. Did you catch the why'd-you-throw-that-ball glare from coach Mike McCarthy?
f. What a putrid Lion-Packer game. Both teams look years away.
g. "Anything we did, we caused for ourselves. We had an opportunity.'' -- Giants coach Tom Coughlin. Only the Giants had many opportunities.
h. Did you read the Lovie Smith running-out-the-clock-in-the-fourth-quarter-to-get-to-overtime the same way as I did? I read it as he doesn't trust his offense. I don't know how you could see it any other way.
i. Gotta play better than that, Matt Leinart.
8. I think if I'm Chris Simms, and I'm a free-agent come Jan. 1, and I'm surveying the field for my 2007 options, I'm doing a lot of research on Houston. Gary Kubiak's not going to stand for play like he's getting out of Carr right now, even if they did exercise the clause in his contract last off-season that paid him a $9-million bonus. Carr can't do anything right right now.
9. I think the thing that Jerry Jones really loves about his new toy -- the $1 billion Cowboys stadium in Arlington which is scheduled to open in 2009 -- is the biggest TV in the world. He loves a lot of things about it, but you know that everything's bigger in Texas, and Jerry had to have the best high-def TV in history. The scoreboard will be 60 yards long, from one 20-yard-line to the other, hung 100 feet above the turf, AND WEIGH 600 TONS. "Almost no matter where you sit in the stadium,'' a beaming Jerral Wayne Jones said in the Cowboys locker room Saturday night, "you'll be able to see the color of the players' eyes. Your brain won't know what to watch -- the action on the field, or the game on the scoreboard.''
10. I think these are my non-football thoughts of the week:
a. I see Prince is set to sing at halftime of the Super Bowl. What, Bobby Vinton wasn't available?
b. If there was a better two hours of TV last week than the two-hour House episode with Foreman near death, I didn't see it. Of course, I didn't watch much TV other than that.
c. Upon further review re Borat: I laughed more at Best in Show. Don't get me wrong. Borat is a good movie. It's just not the funniest movie of all time.
d. Coffeenerdness: I've got to tell you, Joe Torre and Phil Simms selling the green tea makes it really easy for me to have a big mug of it every afternoon. Smart ad strategy, Bigelow.
e. I am not the biggest NBA guy, as readers of this column must know. In fact, I'm not an NBA guy at all. But these Phoenix Suns are amazing to me. Imagine looking at the NBA schedule when it comes out if you're a Sun or Suns exec, and seeing a five-games-in-seven-nights East Coast trip (Thursday-Friday-Sunday-Monday-Wednesday), starting in the swamps of Jersey and ending in the home of the NBA champs, Miami. You'd sign for a 3-2 trip, wouldn't you? And when the first game is a double-overtime thriller (161-157 over the Nets), you wonder how much energy the team will have to play three games in the next four nights. Well, I guess the East is pathetic right now, but what Phoenix did on this trip is something special. Win by four over New Jersey, win by five in Boston, win by 30 in Charlotte, win by 14 in Orlando, win by 10 in Miami. Then they fly cross-country. One day off. And Friday they beat Golden State at home by four, and fly after the game to Sacramento to play the Kings on Saturday night. Win by seven. The final ridiculous tally: seven games in 10 nights, seven wins.
f. Steve Nash. Drew Brees.
g. The Daisuke Matsuzaka deal seems fair for both sides. The Red Sox pay $16.7 million a year for the best pitcher in free-agency (combining the fee to the Japanese team with the pitcher's salary). Good for them, in this crazy baseball economy. And Matsuzaka gets $8.5 million a year, knowing he's going to make millions more in endorsements (in two countries) if he's as good as he thinks he is. Re the $16.7 million a year ... Gil Meche got $11 mill. Barry Zito's going to get $16. Don't the scouts all think Matsuzaka's a can't-miss guy? Maybe not can't-miss ace, but at least can't-miss 15-game winner.
h. Bill Parcells to me after the Cowboys-Falcons game: "You must be pretty happy. You signed the Japanese pitcher.'' Well, uh, shucks, I don't deserve all the credit for the signing.
i. Sox rotation April 2-4-5 in Kansas City to open the season: Schilling, Beckett, Matsuzaka.
j. Finally saw March of the Penguins. Can't believe I avoided it all these months. A terrific movie. Those penguins are heroes, as are the French filmmakers who risked their lives to tell their story. And great, understated narration by Morgan Freeman.
k. I could listen to Morgan Freeman read a list of ingredients for cream of broccoli soup and be captivated.
Who I Like Tonight, and I Mean Tony Kornheiser
We all know the problems Indianapolis has had stopping the run, and I'm sure that won't end tonight. The two most physical safeties of the Dungy Era, Mike Doss and Bob Sanders, will miss this game (and perhaps the season) with injuries; in their places are a couple of special-teamers, Matt Giordano and Dexter Reid. But let's not pretend the whole problem is the run defense. In the last five weeks, Indy has scored 17 (vs. Buffalo), 14 (Dallas), 45 (Philly), 17 (Tennessee), and 17 (Jacksonville). Four out of five games scoring 17 or fewer points. My theory: The possession-receiver losses -- Dallas Clark (knee), Brandon Stokley (Achilles) -- have hurt the Colts more than losing Edgerrin James. Peyton Manning has for so long had the security of the good-hands people on short and intermediate routes, and now he's got to rely on new guys for that role.
Too much bad Colt karma right now. And the Bengals are alive on defense, finally. Cincinnati 31, Indy 30.