Clap Clap ClapClapClap / Take Five: Better Ways for the Patriots to Lose Their First Game
Posted by Andrew Unterberger on December 4, 2007
*Disclaimer: The Good Dr. still does not wish to appear to believe himself any sort of expert on matters athletic, therefore he acknowledges that his opinions on the matter continue to be self-indulgent and often largely suspect, unlike with all other matters, on which his word is final
(Game not actually pictured above)
This. Fucking. Game. I must be insane to let myself get this invested in a football game–much less a regular season one, much less one that doesn’t involve one of my home teams or one I even particularly like, much less one only about three months after I started caring again in the first place. But dear lord did I want the Ravens to win tonight–to witness revenge for beating the Eagles in such a similarly miserable fashion last week, to witness the Patriots finally being put in their place, to basically witness history. And despite a truly countless number of instances where it seemed like the Ravens had the game locked–I think I counted at least a half dozen of those Sportscenter “GAME OVER! But wait!” moments–the Patriots squeaked it out once more. I know I shouldn’t care about this. I know I definitely shouldn’t be writing about this. But what can I say? It’s what was going on in my pop culture world tonight.
Anyway, despite the four-large-cups-of-coffee irritability I felt upon the game’s conclusion (a last second hail mary that gets actually gets caught, but is stopped at the TWO-YARD LINE???) I found slight solace in one fact: there still lies the possibility of one of my Patriots-Meet-Their-Demise dream scenarios to come to full fruition. Here’s the ways I’d like to see them finally go down:
- The Dolphins slaughter them in week 16, giving the Pats their first lost and Miami their first win. And I mean slaughter–none of this “Brady gets one last chance to drive it back for the win” bullshit, I’m talking doing to the Pats what they did to the Redskins and Bills–35-3 at the half, 59-10 final. No suspense whatsoever. Just humiliation.
- The Pats run the board for the rest of the season and the AFC playoffs, to face the Eagles in the Super Bowl (who have gone on an improbable 4-0 run to end the season 9-7 and clinch a wild card spot, consequently dispatching the rest of the NFC in the playoffs). Donovan McNabb starts the Eagles to a dispiritng 20-3 deficit at the half, but a third-quarter arm injury causes the team to call on backup A.J. Feeley once more, who leads the team back to trailing 27-24, and in the final drive, displays patience and good pass selection in order to lead the Eagles on a slow, clock-running crawl towards the red zone, after which Brian Westbrook has a 13-yard end zone run that ends up winning the game.
- Bill Belichick is revealed to not have only employed illegal videotaping techniques earlier in the year, but to have used the information gleaned on the tapes–namely a tearful Adam Vinatieri confessing his recent involvement in a hit-and-run to disappointed but forgiving coach Tony Dungy–for blackmailing the Colts into losing their much-anticipated “Super Bowl XLI 1/2” match. The Pats are forced to forfeit the game, as well as every one played since.
- After a perfect regular season, the Patriots suffer a huge upset at the hands of the Cleveland Browns in their first playoff game. Review of the lackluster performances by a good deal of the players reveal a number of unlikely missed plays and shady key flubs that lead to a government investigation into the integrity of the game. Ultimately it is revealed that Belichick’s poor treatment of the players and failure to deliver on promises previously made for if a perfect season was completed disillusioned the players enough to throw the game at the behest of some high-profile East Coast gamblers. Brady, Moss, Bruschi, Stallworth and Seau are all kicked out of the league, as is Wes Welker, who nonetheless continues to maintain his innocence for decades to come and points to his 10 reception, 1 TD performance in the game as evidence of his being on the level.
- Moments before the Week 17 kickoff against the Giants, a shadowy figure leaps from the sidelines and nails Tom Brady in the leg with a crowbar, leaving him unable to start and leading to the team’s 21-17 loss. The attacker manages to escape amidst the confusion, but several witness reports independently confirm that the assailant beared a strong physical resemblance to Don Shula, coach of the 1972 Miami Dolphins.