Remembering the championship game excitement


Another terrible week of picks for me. I went 1-3 last weekend, and as many of my friends have pointed out, I am 1-7 for the playoffs. I picked the Saints and Chargers to be in the Super Bowl and only the Saints are left. I will make my picks at the end of the blog so you can bet on the other team!

This is such an exciting week for the teams still alive in the playoffs. You can taste the Super Bowl. You are only one win away from a trip to the biggest event in all of sports - the Super Bowl. Everyone is buzzing with excitement in all areas of the organization. When I was with the Eagles, we played in the Conference Championship game five times in my 12 years working for the team. Each game was very different, but the excitement was intense.

Our first Conference Championship game was against the Rams in St. Louis. We were heavy underdogs and were losing for most of the game. One of my responsibilities was to be on the sidelines to pass out the hats and shirts if we won. We entered the fourth quarter trailing pretty badly. I was watching the Rams sidelines as they were getting all of the hats and shirts ready for the victory. We then made a comeback and with under two minutes to play, we had the ball near midfield with a chance to win. I ran back into the locker room with some people from the NFL to get all of our hats and shirts ready for the win. The Rams held on and we lost. All of the the hats and shirts saying “Eagles NFC Conference Champions” were promptly destroyed. Unfortunately we had the same outcome vs. the Panthers, Bucs and Saints in other NFC Championship games while I was with the Eagles. But in 2004, we beat the Falcons in the NFC Championship game and went to the Super Bowl only to lose by three points to the Patriots. The Super Bowl loss hurt, but the feeling of winning the NFC Championship and going to the Super Bowl as part of the team I grew up cheering for was an experience I will always remember.

So this weekend, there are four teams playing for the shot to go to the Super Bowl and have a life-changing experience. Whether you are a player, scout or coach, or work in marketing, merchandising, tickets or anything else with the organization, the experience is amazing. You have to plan as if you are going to win because there is so much to do if you win. The Saints, Vikings and Jets have not been to this round or had this chance in a long time so the excitement is intense.

I talked to some of my friends at each organization and they are flying high hoping they make it to South Florida. For the Colts, they have done all this recently and are going about business as usual.

So for my picks. Two #1 seeds usually do not make it to the Super Bowl. It has not happened in a while so I am going to follow that trend. I think the Saints are a lock and based on what I just said about top seeds, I am going to go with the Jets (see scores below). The Jets are hot and have that “look” like the Steelers and Cardinals in recent years coming out of the Wild-Card round. So based on my record in picking games it will probably by the Vikings and Colts. Either way it is going to be fun to watch and great games this weekend leading up to the best game of all in South Florida on February 7th - the Super Bowl!

Jets 20, Colts 17
Saints 33, Vikings 27

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