Let the Pointless Speculation Begin: Steelers @ Patriots


The last Steelers Super Bowl-winning defense—and Deebo looks just the same…

My title is, of course, wildly inaccurate, as the pointless speculation about this particular AFC Championship Game began the second the curtain descended on the Ravens game, leaving the Steelers with the AFC North crown.

I wonder, by the way, what the AFC North crown actually looks like. I imagine it with a couple of Valkyries crossing swords—you know, the women from the Wagner opera (although the Norse legends from which Wagner drew his material long pre-dated the 19th century.)

See what I mean? I think the speculations should be opened up freely this weekend. After all, some of us at least need to distract ourselves from worrying about the game.

Therefore I shall continue, temporarily, in this vein, and speculate on what the AFC East crown looks like. The Patriots are very accustomed to hoisting it—they have only missed doing so twice since 2002 (when the division reorganized into the current configuration.) In 2002 the Jets won the division; in 2008 the 10-6 Patriots, playing with Matt Cassel at quarterback, lost out to the 11-5 Miami Dolphins. So I imagine the crown being topped with, perhaps, a boy band. Maybe In Sync or something like that. Perhaps they are sporting Ugg boots. So in honor of how much cooler the AFC North crown undoubtedly is, here is The Flight of the Valkyries. Picture Le’Veon Bell gaining 11 yards on a play where there appeared to be no hole whatsoever:

But I’m guessing you didn’t click on this article to hear Wagner. So let’s get to the important stuff—like who’s actually going to win the game? I’m feeling a bit calmer about things since I checked out the Dave Damashek Football Program to see who Football Baby, aka Damashek’s toddler, picked. I’m happy to say it was the Steelers. Football Baby actually has a pretty fabulous record picking games—he’s 116-51 lifetime (which is pretty impressive given how short his life has been so far.)

I also noted that Tunch Ilkin was most enthusiastic as he declared he liked this matchup on  Steelers Live Thursday. Bob Labriola was, naturally, living in his fears, but Tunch said he felt better about this matchup than he did about the Chiefs last week. So that’s something to hang your hat on. Not much, I suppose, but Tunch does watch a ton of film. Check out the video, linked above, and then the one that follows it, which scouts the Patriots’ defense. I guarantee it will make you feel better.

Tunch, of course, has no idea how Sunday’s game will end, and neither does anyone else. There are a couple of things I can guarantee, however. The first is this—whichever way the game comes out, the traditional post-game greeting between Bill Belichick and Mike Tomlin is almost certainly going to be lacking in any sort of warmth. The second—win or lose, I suspect it is going to be a very exciting game to watch, especially if you don’t have a dog in the fight. That’s as far as my speculations are going to go.

And finally, although the following video was actually made for last week’s game, Tom Brady does get a mention, so it seems appropriate:


  • Oh, Bwunhilde, you’re so wuvvwee!

    Homer cannot look at a Valkyrie without thinking of Bugs, Porky, and What’s Opera, Doc? It remains the Apex – or rather the Acme – of American culture and civilization.

    And Pittsburgh Dad is the Apex – or maybe the Sheetz – of Yinzer Culture.

    Love them both.

    (Greetings from 37,026 feet over Lawton, OK en route from LAX to IAD. Homer and friend evacuated DC in advance of the inauguration for several days of golf in Palm Desert. The golf was surprisingly good at LaQuinta and Desert Springs. It rained big time one morning, and we got out at noon and didn’t feel a drop. Homer is tanned, fit, rested and ready to cheer on the Steelers to victory)



    • It sounds as if, like the Steelers, you’re about as healthy as you’ve been all season. Go Steelers : )


    • cold_old_steelers_fan

      I wouldn’t normally be jealous but since we have been having rain here (I dislike gloomy more than cold), I am jealous.


      • Well, we learned that the Obamas were coming to PSP immediately after the inauguration. Their ETA coincided with our planned departure from Palm Springs to LA. So we decided to swing by the airport to join the crowd welcoming them upon their arrival. At about 3pm, the rain and fog and overcast were very heavy as a crowd gathered outside the airport on Ramon Road (one of the main drags). We could see the storm heading our way was going to be much worse, so we decided to skip it and head directly for LA.

        A real rainstorm in the desert is quite something, because most of the roads don’t have (or need) sewers. And low-lying areas are washes – and rain can come roaring down from the mountains. Streets and roads become flooded in low-lying areas, and when a car passes you going in the opposite direction, you get blinded by the torrential water splash.

        It turns out the Obamas circled PSP for an hour and it wasn’t safe to land, so they diverted to March ARB (formerly March AFB) in Riverside, about 60 miles away. Then they motorcaded to Rancho Mirage. So we didn’t miss a thing. And it’s going to pour this weekend down there…..the third (and biggest) of three storms. So I don’t think the former President will get in much golf, and I can tell you it’s not much warmer in Palm Springs right now than it is in DC.

        We were incredibly lucky – with all the rain – to get in a couple of great rounds of golf. And, after a great flight on Virgin America today, it’s back to DC. Now that the Inauguration is over, the damned rioters have been locked up, and the women’s march is over, things are back to normal. The streets are back open, the security perimeter is no more, and I can have my city back.

        All Homer wants now is a Steeler victory on Sunday.


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