13) Patriots 24, Jaguars 20— Tom Brady went to the same high school as Barry Bonds, Lynn Swann— Serra HS in San Mateo, CA; their booster club must have a boatload of money.
Despite all that, my favorite Serra HS alum is former big league infielder Tim Cullen, who won a World Series ring as a reserve infielder with the ’72 Oakland A’s.
Looking up Cullen’s career, which lasted seven years, in February, 1968 he was traded from the Senators to the White Sox, then in August that same year, he was traded back to Washington. In both trades, infielder Ron Hansen went the other way. No idea why.
12) Patriots’ WR Danny Amendola played the first four years of his career with the St Louis Rams; he missed 22 of 64 games in those years, when the Rams went a combined 17-46-1. Amendola was productive when he played, but he missed way too many games.
In five years since moving on to New England, Amendola has played in 69 of 80 games, for a team that went 63-17— are the Patriots’ trainers that much better than the Rams’ trainers?
11) Maybe this happens a lot and I’ve just never seen it, but when the Patriots’ game ended and Brady was shaking hands with a guy on Jacksonville, referee Clete Blakeman patted Brady on the back, got his attention, then said something quick to him before he left.
Since when do the referees congratulate players after they win?
10) In 266 NFL games this season, only 12 times has a team been called for zero or one penalty in a game— New England became the 12th team Sunday.
Last time an NFL team had only one penalty in a playoff game? The Patriots, back in 2011.
9) Two years ago, for whatever reason, ESPN went out of its way to promote LSU’s freshman star Ben Simmons, to the point where you almost rooted against Simmons, especially when LSU didn’t make the NCAA tournament. It became sickening that ESPN would promote a kid who had no resume— it was all hype.
This year, they’re doing the same thing with Oklahoma’s Trae Young, to the point where the kid has 28 turnovers in his last three games but you feel like ESPN thinks he is the best college ballplayer since Michael Jordan, or at least Simmons. Enough already; let the season play itself out. At least Oklahoma will be in the NCAA’s.
8) How many movies has Dwayne Johnson made? Seems like The Rock is working his butt off, making a ton of cash. According to IMDB.com, Mr Johnson has made 70 movies/TV shows, not counting all his WWE stuff and he is only 46 years old.
He has 10 projects that have either been completed or announced but not released yet. Have to give him credit, he is making a lot of money while the proverbial iron is hot.
7) When Nick Foles went to the Pro Bowl after the 2013 season, his OC with the Eagles was Pat Shurmur, who is Minnesota’s OC now and is expected to be named head coach of the Giants Tuesday. Foles could win the Super Bowl, then go back to being the Eagles’ backup next year.
6) What the hell do the Vikings do now? Bad enough they have to go home and have the Super Bowl played in their own ballpark, but their offseason will really be interesting.
Which of the three QB’s stays in Minnesota? Keenum? Bridgewater? Bradford? Do two of them stay and if so, which one takes a hike? Lot of hard questions need to be answered.
5) Clemson Tigers are 16-3 and appear headed to the NCAAs, but they lost 2nd-leading scorer Donte Grantham with a torn ACL Saturday— he is out for the year.
4) Man if you don’t like football, Sunday was a rough day for sports on TV; a few, but not many college hoop games- no real good ones, some golf, the Australian Open, but just a lackluster TV day, except for the conference championship games.
3) Eagles 38, Vikings 7—During the regular season, Vikings were only team not to allow a defensive TD against them- whoops. Patrick Robinson’s first quarter pick-6 changed all that, and turned the tide in a game that Minnesota led early, 7-0.
2) NFL trivia— Case Keenum could’ve become the second undrafted QB to start a Super Bowl, but the draft today is only seven rounds— John Unitas was a 9th round pick of the Steelers in 1955, though there were also a lot fewer teams then. Unitas was the 102nd player taken in the ’55 draft, which would put him in the 4th round these days.
Kurt Warner remains the only undrafted QB to start a Super Bowl.
1) Early line on the Super Bowl: Patriots, -5.5 or 6, bet down already from -7. Some experts are predicting it’ll get back to 7 or 7.5 in the next two weeks.
It is unusual that the Eagles just KO’d the Vikings and now head to Minnesota for the Super Bowl, where it is doubtful they’ll get a warm reception.
2018 handicapping note: Vikings return to Philadelphia in the 2018 regular season.