Monday, February 06, 2006


As happy I am that the Steelers won it all, that has to be one of the lamest Superbowls I have ever seen. The refs sucked, the Seahawks sucked even more, the commercials weren't even any good, and Jerome Bettis is an attention whore. I think either of the "alternative" bowls, found here and here, would've been a much better watch. Seriously, the Puppy Bowl halftime show totally kicked the Rolling Stones' geriatric asses.

Now we are truly in the dark weeks, with no baseball and no football.


  1. I, for one, thought that both teams had each other schemed very well...The Steelers made the big plays when they had to, and the Seahawks made some costly errors...

    Yes, I am a Steelers fan, but that guy pushed off in the end zone. Did he shove Taylor to the ground? No, but that's not the rule. You can't use your arms to get separation. No touchdown.

    Also on the Stephens catch that was brought back for holding...When a defenseman gets past you, you can't continue to block him...Holding...ball comes back.

    There were missed calls, but none changed the outcome of the game. In fact, the Seahawks benefitted from an official initiated review on the Hassleback fumble.

    As for Bettis...the guy goes through hell just to walk each day. He's come close a number of times and finally won it. The team dedicated the SB to him. He responded as the leader that he is...If it weren't for his advice, Parker never breaks off that run and maybe they don't win...

    In Pittsburgh, the Steelers are the Sox...They have been waiting for this for a long time having come close on many occasions with painful losses.

    There wasn't much flow to the game, but I think that was good defense on both sides...

    Not the most exciting SB ever, but the Sox/Cards 4 games weren't exactly the best games I've ever seen, either...

  2. I agree with you on most of this. But I stand by everything I posted.

    - Bettis being a good player or team leader has nothing to do with him being an attention whore.
    - Regardless of individual plays, you have to admit the officiating sucked. But thankfully it probably didn't affect the outcome of the game.

    The one thing I disagree with you: the Hasselbeck "fumble". It was not a fumble. If the call on the field had stood, it would have been a travesty.

  3. I wasn't saying that Hassleback fumbled...I was saying they called it wrong on the field (although you can sort of see was tough to see that Foote touch him before he went down, he didn't slide, and it looked as if he lost the ball). I was pointing that out because Holmgren couldn't challenge-inside the last two minutes of the half- and the refs ended up getting the call right in the end.

    I really can't point to too much that the officials didn't get right. Anything in particular you think they missed or didn't do right? There really weren't too many plays that can be called controversial...The called back TD, but the ruling was right...The hold, the ruling was right. Roethsadkakafa at the goal line...I don't really see it.

    Also, I would argue that Bettis was put in the spotlight by his teammates and the press. If you look back over his career (he will be in the HOF, without a doubt...5th all time leading rusher) he wasn't the type to go to the press. Now, Deoin Sanders and Michael Irvin??? Those are media whores...

  4. I thought the 15-yard penalty for Hasselbeck's "block below the waist" was truly horrible. And there were two times an "incomplete pass vs. fumble" call was very suspicious; once they blew the ball dead way too early (in my opinion) -- I thought the new NFL rule is they wouldn't do that, since it prevents reviews of the plays. I can't remember the details of those two plays though.

    I guess there's so much subjectivity in reffing an NFL game, judgment calls have to be made all the time. Every once and a while the judgment calls seem to fall towards one team or the other (not saying there's a cosnpiracy, or even bias, it's just chance), and it seems Seattle drew the short end of the stick in that case. Luckily they legitimately lost the game anyway. (I feel the same way about the Pats-Broncos game.)

    I agree the teammates and press (especially the press)
    put Bettis in the spotlight...but he clearly loved it. His comments after that game were ridiculous. "My teammates put me on their backs and wouldn't let me down", etc. Even when talking about his teammates, it's about him.

    Anyway, what did you think about the MVP? I would've given it to Roethekjsdhberger.

  5. First and foremost, that was a boring super bowl.

    But I am glad for Cowher (and anyone standing within 15 feet of him).

    I do agree with Earl - the officials were awful. and implying that its not that bad because they got one call right doesn't excuse that they botched several important calls.

    ALL the anyalysts said that the pass interference call was bad. sure the guy put his hand on the defender, but that happens all the time. Bad Call. Cost SEA 4 points.

    Bens first TD. If he was stopped and they kick the FG instead - or worse are stopped on 4th down.

    The holding call - tough call - even Madden said it was a bad call. If Madden says something is a bad call, well then, it was probably a bad call.

    Maybe these calls did not affect the game. Maybe they did.

    The best analogy given though was by Matt - as a Steelers fan - who cares if it is an exciting game or not. Just get the win. Just like the Sox over STL.

    So Congratulations to the Steelers They definitely deserved it.

  6. Here's my final defense of these calls...

    The holding call...That is called independently of what happens downfield. The flag was thrown before the catch was made...If Haggans is let go, then he would have more than likely had Hassleback. Against Denver, Pittsburgh had a TD called back because of an illegal formation. The next play Roethsgalknagnk throws a TD pass to Ward. The Seahawks get called for holding (that didn't even go for a score), the next play Hassleback throws a terrible pass, intercepted.

    That leads us to...

    The "block below the waist". You can't go low (through the legs of) through a blocker to get to a ball carrier. First off, it is a good way to end a guy's career. If Hassleback doesn't do that, guess what? Ike Taylor takes that to the house.

    The pass interference...The rule is the rule. You can't create separation with your arms. And we can't pick and choose here. Hell, the Pats won a game because of the "tuck rule".

    The Hawks missed 2 field goals. Jerramy Stephens dropped a bunch of wide open passes. Their D let up some real big plays...How about not letting Ward run free and catch a 40-yard floater at the goal line on 3rd and 28??? How about not letting Parker bust a 75-yard TD run. How about stopping Pittsburgh on some of those 3rd down plays.

    The fumbles, to which Earl makes reference, would have become the Steelers ball. Stephens coughed those up, too...

    And, as to the goal line play...The camera is actually in the end zone which means that the angle is off (kind of like why it is really hard to tell corner calls when watching baseball). If it is really close looking to us, it probably breaks the plane by an inch or three...

    The officiating is such a non-story that has become a huge conspiracy theory...I'll tell you sucks living in the Boston area and being a fan of another team. The people around here can't say, "Congrats...Pittsburgh finally got one for the thumb." It is more like, "The officials gave that game away..." or "The Pats would have won 50-0 against that Seattle team..." Drives me crazy.

  7. I must admit I love it when Grieve gets amped!

    In my opinion, the pass interference call is a "ticky tack" foul, but a foul nonetheless. It was a busted play and it was laziness on the receiver's part. the ref called it immediately! You can actually see him grab for his flag, miss the flag, and grab for it again.

    As for the holding call, Grieve is right again. In my opinion the offensive lineman's arm "accidentally" got caught under the defenders neck. It wasn't intentional, but it is a hold nonetheless. Shit happens and it was a good call, bad luck for the Seahawks.

    All in all I think the Steelers out mettled the Seahawks. Neither team played amazingly well, but the Steelers stepped up when they had to and the Seahawks didn't even come close. I am still cringing about their time management at the end of the half and game. Not too mention the fact that the best running back in the league apparently didn't show up for the game.

    That being said, I think the refs did a pretty ba

  8. I didn't finish my comment...

    That being said I think the refs did make a couple bad calls, but nothing that changed the outcome of the game.

  9. The "block below the waist". You can't go low (through the legs of) through a blocker to get to a ball carrier. First off, it is a good way to end a guy's career. If Hassleback doesn't do that, guess what? Ike Taylor takes that to the house.

    You are perhaps the only person on the planet to defend that call. So in the future, if you see someone dive for a tackle, just get in the way, and draw a 15 yeard penalty! Awesome!

    Sorry, but intent plays a role in the block/tackle thing. The ruling on the field was that Hasselbeck's intent was to block. (I am not making this up. This has been confirmed by league officials.) His intent was clearly to tackle; it was a terrible call.

  10. Well, I'm not sure where to start. well, actually I don't really care that much so I won't bother going into detail.

    The thing that I find most funny is that I posted that I responded to say I think the refs did a crappy job. In fact anytime people are talking about refs after a game that generally means they did a crappy job.

    The Steelers made the plays when they needed to and the SeaChickens could not. Hell, I was rooting for Pittsburgh and even ended my post with "So Congratulations to the Steelers They definitely deserved it."

    And maybe not directed at me - Matt's next post - "The people around here can't say, "Congrats...Pittsburgh finally got one for the thumb."

    And just for the record - its not just Boston talking about the officiating.

  11. Oh and on a more positive note - now that the Steelers have won again and Big Ben is the real deal, do you look back on the Kordell Stewart years and think - good god, how in the hell did we really expect to win with that team?

    Kind of like as Sox fans we really felt that they might win in 1999 with really only Pedro (hell our rotation had Mark Portugal and Pat Rapp and Reggie Jefferson as our DH - yikes). But then when we have a real TEAM in 2004 it makes it clear how delusional we were.

    Just seemed Kordell could never get them over the hump.

  12. I am not the only one with that call, Earl...Sorry...

    Again, hate to say it, but the rule is the rule. Here it is in all its glory: "An illegal block is called when a player blocks an opponent below the waist other than to tackle a runner or pretended runner." Hassleback went low on a blocker (not the runner or pretended runner).

    The blocker did not get in the way, he was setting up for a block and Hasselback dove. Hasselback hit him when going to Taylor. If Hasselback doesn't dive there, the blocker blocks him and that pick goes for a TD.

    It's a dangerous play and a penalty.

    I've actually looked around for some press that were complaining about calls and I couldn't find it anywhere that the hit was wrong...

    Again, aside from all of this Seattle played like crap. It wasn't the calls that had them miss field goals, drop passes, throw picks, etc...

  13. Keep looking - you won't have to go far. I could provide a bunch more.

    I've actually looked around for some press that were complaining about calls and I couldn't find it anywhere that the hit was wrong...

  14. Thanks, anonymous...Did you read the rest of the posts? It is not illegal to tackle someone at their legs...It is illegal to go through a blocker's legs to get to the ball carrier...

  15. First off, I absolutely agree that the Steelers won the game fair and square; nowhere have I even so much as implied that the officiating cost the Birds the game. In fact, I said the exact opposite. Not sure why you keep attacking me on this score.

    Now, re-read the rule you just quoted. It should be called illegal if his intention is something "...other than to tackle a runner". That is exactly what he was doing. Again, intent matters. I challenge you to find a single case where a tackler was called for an illegal block.

    A Google News search of "Super Bowl Below Waist" pops up the following articles which agree that it was a bad call (this is just a sampling):

    From one of those articles: "Regardless, it cost Seattle 15 yards because, a league source said, officials on the field determined that the Seahawk quarterback was aiming to take out a blocker on the return, not the ballcarrier." So you're saying the league source is wrong?

  16. (I have to say, this argument - about an inconsequential blown call - is about a million times more entertaining than the actual game...)

  17. Its a diversion tactic. Let's focus on one bad call that had the least impact on the game - the Hasselbeck one. Meanwhile the two others are the one that more likely influenced the number of points being scored.

    The best strategy would be to cease and desist.

    Matt - enjoy the championship - that is what you should be doing. Yankee fans certainly don't pay any heed to their Jeffrey Maeir addeed WS win. Two years from now noone will remember these calls. They were bad. But they weren't soooo bad that they completely changed the face of the game.

    Buy the T-shirt. Super Bowl XL champions. And wear it with pride.

  18. Good call X. And honestly I see no reason why they can't repeat. Bettis will be gone, but that's not going to kill them.

  19. I haven't attacked anyone on the score...not that I remember, but I have been known to rant every once in a while...

    X, on the two other calls...The holding call, again, was thrown BEFORE the play happened downfield...It would have been a hold had the receiver dropped another pass, or (as it happened) caught it...

    The pass interference? It was pass interference...Just like Brady tucked it...That's the rule...

    I am enjoying the championship...Don't worry about that...

    Earl, I have contended all along what you just wrote. That he was taking out the blocker first to get to the ball carrier. The officials "determined the Seahawk quarterback was aiming to take out a blocker on the return, not the ballcarrier." Semantics...The penalty was called because of the hit on the non-returner, even though he also tackled Ike Taylor...It is funny, that play really doesn't matter in the long run. Ward was wide open on the trick play, and would have scored either way...

    By the way, and I am looking for this...I believe that this call happened in a Pats game this year, too...and, ironically, against Pittsburgh. I am looking for it. But, it might have been the first Pitt/Indy game, though...Roethalkhadl was called for it.

    Let's edit names out of posts, if possible...

  20. Ok, here's how full of crap Madden and Michaels are...The previous block below the waist (and Madden couldn't recall seeing this before???) happened between Pitt and Indy ON MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL THIS YEAR!!!

    "Pittsburgh's Jeff Hartings drew a 15-yard penalty during the interception; he dove low into the player in front of the return man. The Monday Night Football announcers attempted a garbled explanation about how it is illegal to crash through one player to get to another during a turnover. Actually the rule is quite simple and reads, at Rule 12, Section 2, Article 13: "After a change of possession, neither team may block below the waist."

    The rest of the stuff that I am reading is all opinion of whether or not the calls should have been made. One article says, "When Farrior pushed upfield, Gray did hook him with his right arm, and Farrior went down. When referee Bill Leavy flagged Gray, it was a bad omen for the Seahawks." So he held him, but it was a bad omen? Nice...

    There was also this gem, "Peter Warrick ripped off a 33-yard punt return to give Seattle the ball at the Steelers 46. But Etric Pruitt was called for holding. How clear was it? Well, Madden thought the call was for Pruitt holding the gunner at the beginning of the play. It wasn't. The flag came in during the runback and it looked pretty minor." So, he held him, but it looked minor...AND Madden (see my comments about him above) also said he might have held him EARLIER in the play (so two holds)...but this was a mistake, too.

    These aren't Knoblauch missed the tag sort of things where film shows he missed the tag by a lot. These infractions were there, but some people thought they "should" have been let go...I have a question. Why? Isn't it the refs job to call these? Did Jackson put his arm in to the defenders chest? Yes. Was Farrior taken down? Yes. Was Haggans held near the neck? Yes. Was there enough evidence to overturn the TD of Roeth? No. Did the review show Hasselback hadn't fumbled? Yes, and they reversed it. Did Stevens fumble? Yes, and they missed it. That is the one really blown call, and that one should have gone Pittburgh's way.

    I can't argue this any more...I don't have anything else to really add.

    My summation...Seattle missed Field Goals, dropped passes, and committed some bad penalties. They mismanaged the clock. They allowed ridiculous plays (again the 3rd and 28 Ward reception comes to mind). They couldn't stop Pittsburgh in 3rd down situations, and they lost.