I try and not write in absolutes – best ever, worst ever, loudest ever, most obnoxious ever. So I will not say this was the worst Super Bowl ever, but it is easily the worst one I can remember.
In every aspect: from the pre-game to the commercials and everything in-between. The Late Show special after the game was pretty funny though.
I got lit up a bit for my Facebook comments concerning some pre-game lady guest who spoke of how coaches have to “adjust to adjustments.” I have been around the game a long time and have talked football with coaches at every level, and I had never heard that phrase before – ever. As I said on Facebook, this is supposed to be the A team, not the Title IX Squad.
The game itself was horrible. It would have been better to have replacement officials than the clowns in the stripes on Sunday.
Twice Cam Newton should have been flagged for intentional grounding when his pass did not come within the same ZIP Code of a Carolina receiver. Neither time was he outside the pocket. One time the ball did not reach the line of scrimmage. Both are necessary to avoid a grounding call.
Taunting is one of those rules I do not think is enforced enough, but the taunting call on Denver at the beginning of the game was an absolute joke. Perhaps the Broncos player taking his helmet off made it a penalty, but I believe that would have been unsportsmanlike conduct and not taunting.
And if that taunting call was the threshold for penalties to be enforced, there darned sure should have been a lot more holding calls. Some of them were so atrocious they resembled wrestling takedowns more than blocks.
The play calling was abysmal on both sides. I am sure if I was to go back and break down the film there were at least 10 first-down dives into the middle of the line that yielded nothing or close to nothing. These are supposed to be the best the sport has to offer on the world stage for all to see. Most youth football coaches could have done a better job.
And while I am far from a Newton fan, he is truly a potential weapon. At least twice after he handed off he carried out his fake and was left unaccounted for. When that happens, in about three or four plays he should fake the handoff and keep the ball. It didn’t happen often enough.
Newton’s now infamous quote, “I’m an African-American quarterback that may scare a lot of people because they haven’t seen nothing that they can compare me to,” is partially on point. It does not matter to me what his race is, but as far as nothing to compare to – that is spot on.
Late in the game when he fumbled the ball and it was loose, he chose to turn tail and run away from it rather than sell out to everything possible to retain possession. Who knows what one more body in the mix would have done? Well, we know what one less did. Nothing.
And while I am on the subject of Newton, as far as I know skull caps are not excluded from the head gear that is to be removed during the National Anthem. Talk about putting yourself above the game.
But all was not bad about the game and all around it. The Doritos commercial with the mother getting an ultrasound was in my opinion the best ever. My wife’s seven-layer dip and my friend’s wife’s chicken strips were just to die for.
The best thing about the weekend was Eddie DeBartolo Jr. making it to Canton. He brought my father so much happiness by San Francisco finally winning a Super Bowl and he truly treated his players like family. He is responsible for building one of the premier franchises in all of sport, and it is sad to see how his family has run that franchise into the ground.
Congratulations Eddie – and thank you. While I do not know if your former team will ever reach center stage again, you will always be the first owner to win five Vince Lombardi trophies, and nobody can ever take that away from you.