Sunday, October 28, 2007

Now That the Ugliness Is Out of the Way...

I never thought I’d resort to this, but let’s look to the Detroit Lions for hope in the aftermath (expect to see that word a lot this week) of the 52-7 non-win against New England. A little while ago, you may remember, the Lions went on the road against the Redskins and lost by 45 points, in their case, 45-0. Pretty bad loss. A pretty bad way to start off the 1991 season. But the Lions recovered, got back their key injured players, and eventually made it all the way to the NFC Championship game, where they of course again lost to the Redskins. So, the point is, it’s possible to bounce back from such a brutal non-win on the road and still make something of your season. If the Lions can do it, anyone can.

Note to Brian Belichick about that game: the Redskins were winning 45-0 in the fourth quarter, and had the ball on the Lions’ 1-yard line. It was a first down, even. One yard away from a truly gaudy 52-0 score. But not only did the Skins’ down the ball four straight times, benevolently giving it back to their convincingly dispatched foe, they did it with their backup QB (the legendary Jeff Rutledge), just to be sure the early crushing success of Mark Rypien did not accidentally result in more points. Such was the concern of Joe Gibbs and the Redskins not to needlessly show up an opponent. It’s called class and respect you drab-sweatshirt-wearing cheater. I know you’re still bitter about being held to the same rules as the rest of the league, but have a little respect (mercy?) for a team clearly beaten and beaten badly. Don’t go for it TWICE on fourth down, tool. Even the haughtiest Cowboys teams led by the likes of Irvin and Sanders weren’t this earth-shatteringly arrogant and heartless. Here’s hoping the Colts lay 90 on you.

But DCO, you may ask, didn’t you celebrate the late TD the Patriots scored against the Cowboys a few weeks ago, kind of sort of running up the score on them? Wasn’t that equally classless? Perhaps. That game was slightly closer, however, and right on the heels of Dallas’ miraculous (perhaps soul-selling?) victory over the Bills, in which they came back late in the game after facing a similar deficit. There: positions rationalized. End of complaint portion.

Seriously, though, at 4-3 and with the truly woeful Jets coming up next week, it’s possible, even probable, that at this time next week we’ll see the Skins at 5-3 and just a game behind the Giants at the halfway point of the season. Such a win would also match last year’s win total, with eight more games to improve upon it.

All is far from lost. They’re not the Dolphins (0-8). They’re not the Rams (0-8). But maybe they could be the *1991* Lions (12-4).

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