Currently I am not employed by the New England Patriots in any capacity. I don’t strap on pads and go at it on the field each Sunday, and I am not a coach. Many people tell me because that’s the case, it is stupid and pointless to say the word “we” when talking about the team.
Those people can kiss my chode.
We lost a HUGE game last night against the undefeated Colts and we did it in spectacularly unusual fashion. We were ahead 31-14 in the 4th quarter. The game was all but won. But then the Colts scored. Quickly. And then they scored again. Soon all the giddy phone calls between my family members and friends stopped and everyone just sat watching in fear.
That fear was justified.
With just over two minutes left, the Patriots faced 4th and 2 on their own 28-yard line. The correct move would’ve been to punt the ball away and stop Peyton Manning and the Colts from scoring. When I say that’s the correct move, it’s not opinion. It’s fact. The Patriots defense may have been faltering late in the game, but they did pick Manning off twice before. So you kick the ball, let them drive 70 yards and hope you can fend them off. That is the correct call.
But Patriots head coach Bill Belichick called timeout before the 4th and 2 play. “That’s odd” I muttered to myself. Then he started having a very in-depth conversation with Tom Brady. I picked up the phone and dialed my brother.
“They can’t be going for it right?” I asked.
“You don’t burn your last time out unless you’re drawing up a play,” he said.
We hung up the phone and the Patriots offense took the field. I prayed that they were just trying to draw the defense offsides. I willed my voice to go through the TV and into Belichick’s headset as I chanted “Don’t snap the ball, don’t snap the ball, don’t snap the ball.”
But they did snap the ball. It was a pass to Kevin Faulk and it came up short. We got screwed by the refs, to be honest, but Belichick couldn’t challenge the spot of the ball because he stupidly wasted his last two timeouts — one at the start of the previous drive (at the START of the drive for God’s sake) and the other to draw up the play that didn’t work — and so Manning took over on the Patriots 30 yard line.
You give one of the best QBs of all time a short field with the game on the line and he’ll make you pay. And Manning did.
Final score Colts 35 Patriots 34.
When the Colts won the game I flipped the fuck out. I screamed as loud as I could, I swore up a storm, I punched things and threw things. My wife yelled at me from the bedroom to be quiet and I yelled right back at her to leave me the hell alone. She has no understanding of what it’s like to watch your favorite team lose a game like this. I was so angry I couldn’t go to bed for hours as I relived all the plays that could’ve won us the game, none bigger than Belichick’s gaffe which is right up there with Grady Little in 2003.
But then this morning I woke up to a familiar chirping coming from the nursery. When I walked in I saw my smiling son, calling out “Dadda!” and reaching out his arms for me. And as he puckered up his face and gave me a kiss, I realized something.
I REALIZED OUR COACH IS AN ARROGANT JACKASS WHO COST US THE GAME, PROBABLY THE BYE WEEK AND HOMEFIELD ADVANTAGE IN THE PLAYOFFS!!!!!!!
Sorry, but if you were expecting a few warm and fuzzies from the Boy was going to erase the heartache from the previous night, you are sadly mistaken. Kids can’t fix everything. And in fact, Will actually woke up during the 4th quarter and I had to grab him, give him milk and calm him down. While I had him in the living room, the Colts scored two friggin touchdowns. I’m not saying it’s all Will’s fault, but I think he shares in at least part of the blame.
This is the first morning I’ve been THRILLED to watch cartoons. After all I can’t turn on the local news because they’re replaying highlights of the game. I certainly can’t turn on SportsCenter because all the ESPN talking heads will be reliving this all week.
I’m a prisoner in my own home. All because Bill Belichick had his “I’m Keith Hernandez” moment backfire on him. And not even my adorable son can do a damn thing about it.
Sometimes I hate caring about a team this much.