Saturday, January 22, 2011


Being in college is fun. For example, you have a lot of human resources around you and you get some great entertainment when their views clash on a particular subject. Today, I will be taking advantage of that.

Earlier this week, I asked my friend Amy and my boyfriend Andrew to write up a few things for me. Amy, a Jets fan, and Andrew, a Steelers fan, have been at each others' throats this whole week, so I decided to ask them (separately) to give me their thoughts on Sunday's AFC Championship game. I'm actually quite surprised there wasn't any swearing involved with the messages I received on Facebook. [Good job, you two!] They gave some really great analyses, and I'm going to strategically section them off verbatim in a smack-talking format.

Round 1 -- FIGHT!

Amy: Where do I begin before the epic battle arrives? Well, to all Jets fans, if we defeated the Steelers once, then we can do it again.

Okay my dears, what are your views about the QB situation?

Andrew: In one corner we have a quarterback who in all fairness has played well in every playoff game he has played in (Mark Sanchez) except the one game which it mattered most (AFC Championship Game last year). And then you have Ben Roethlisberger, a proven winner in this league, a two time superbowl winner. Taking all of his off the field issues that Ben has had throughout his career off the table and simply looking at him as a football player he is without a doubt one of the top 3 qb’s in the NFL. I see Ben as being better here…

Amy: At times, Sanchez can make bad moves on offense; however, his strength on offense is hand off the ball to an offensive player and run it. Short and usually precise to gain some yards. Big Ben can throw like crazy: BUT it's a 50/50 shot that the player open may get it. Big Ben, huge arm... well, overall. I can't even believe he can run and make some yards. With his personal record, well, make sure you protect your family/friends especially the female ones.

Oh, my dear, Amy, you're quite brutal with the Ben Rape-lisberger jokes--oh wait. Sorry. I forgot where I was for a second there. While I do think that Ben's troubles are going to be paramount from this point forward, his reliability and his bulk are going to make a world of difference here. Mark Sanchez is a very good quarterback and has a lot of options with him. I do agree with Andrew on saying he's done a great job in every postseason game he has played.

Round 2 -- FIGHT!

Next question...what are your thoughts on the rest of the offense?

Amy: Short and sweet. Sanchez, you can still run the ball and pick up some yards if you want. You did it before, you can do it again. Key Players (beside Sanchez): LaDanian Tomlinson, Shonne Greene ... Jets may be underdogs, but we are filled with surprises.

Andrew:  This is a little tricky. Because I am not a big fan of Rashard Mendenhall, I like him--I just don’t love him. I am however a bigger fan of the tandem of LT and Shonne Green. You got the older vet and young guy. Granted I don’t think they will be running on the Steelers defense (that’s for later on). But anyway I am a fan of the Jets running backs in this situation. Now this one is not business for me--its personal. Santonio Holmes used to be a Steeler now he is a Jet. I think he is a good receiver but I'm not rooting for him. I do believe that the Steelers' receivers are overall better than the Jets. You have “old faithful” in Hines Ward who seems to get better with age, and a great corps of young receivers with Mike Wallace, Antonio Brown, and Emmanuel Sanders. I have never been a fan of Braylon Edwards but I believe IF The Jets will do damage they will do it not because of their talent but because of the weakness in the Steelers defense. 

There really is an assortment of guys on both ends of the offense. Sure, Mendenhall isn't Jerome Bettis, but is doing his job. LaDanian Tomlinson is being LT and running at his best like always. Shonne Green is a big force too on the Jets O. I will admit that the passing game is slightly stronger on the Steelers side of the ball, but key receivers like Santonio Holmes will be perking up the passing game on the Jets end. The strength of each sides' defensive lines will definitely be a factor in how well each offensive line plays out on Sunday.

Final Round -- FIGHT!

Speaking of defensive lines, how about those guys? Any thoughts on special teams too?

Amy: Jets' defense are very epic in the league. I think some football fantasy players put at least 1 Jet defense player on their fantasy team. REVIS! I know he pulled a stunt earlier, but hey, he came back. He's on his A game whenever defending a player. #24!! [Key players:] Defensive end Sean Ellis, David Harris, and of course, Darrelle Revis. From last game that Jets defeated Steelers, the key goal was SAFETY!!! Great sources for success with patience and endurance. Nick Folk is not bad of a kicker for Jets. The previous years for field goals against Steelers... not good.

Andrew: The Steelers win this one hands down. Our defense leads the NFL in just about every statistical category. [On Cornerbacks:] I gotta give this to the Jets. They got two of the best in the league there is really nothing I can say. [But with safeties...] TROY POLAMALU (case closed).

I'll admit, the defensive stuff is about even on each side, with big names guarding and blocking with pro-bowler force. The Steelers did have some woes on special teams going on throughout the year, but that hasn't really taken a toll yet. This should be a fun game.

Additional comments:

Amy: Overall, Jets do have something unique about themselves from the other teams: luck. Well, every team has luck. Somehow, Jets show their green of luck.

Double K.O.? I don't know...I don't really want to get in the middle of this. Between hearing "the Not Yets" and Roethlisberger jokes, I enjoy my life. I actually had part of my wardrobe on Monday thrown into the mix. I wore a green shirt and Amy goes, "she's wearing green," to Andrew wearing a Steelers jacket. What did I do wrong? My hands are clean of this! Seriously!

Anyway, I'd like to thank these two fine people for setting aside their differences for this brief time and actually writing their views on Sunday's war. I wish you two the best of luck. I swear, if one of you decide to call me after the game in tears because one of you lost, I'm not going to know what to say. Just...don't go to class the next day.

(with many thanks to Amy and Andrew!)