Some parting shots from the first weekend of the NFL playoffs:
*I forgot what is was like to watch commericals during NFL games, oh how I already miss the NFL Ticket and the Red Zone Channel
*Matt Ryan had a great season and has single-handedly turned out the fortunes of the Falcons' franchise, but stopping RB Michael Turner is still the key to beating Atlanta. The Cardinals' defense suprisingly held him to 42 yards on 18 carries. For the record Ryan finished the game 26 of 40 for 199 yards and 2 TD's, but he also threw two big picks.
*Larry Fitzgerald is the best receiver in the NFL...period. The TD catch he made was amazing, but it is just one of many he had during the season.
*The Colts can't win playoff games without a running game. Joseph Addai only mustered 44 yards on 16 carries. Running the football is a must in winning come playoff time.
*L.T. is done. I don't see him ever returning to his former self. Do you think the Chargers would like to have Michael Turner back now?
*Darren Sproles is the man - and was a stellar sleeper pick in my playoff fantasy football lineup! He produced the third most total yards in playoff history, including 105 yards rushing on 23 carries and 2 TD's!
*How did Phillip Rivers miss the Pro Bowl?
*The Ravens were my sleeper pick of all of the wildcard teams. Their defense is nearly as good as their 2000 unit that won the Super Bowl. Their running game can wear any team down and rookie quartberback Joe Flacco is much better than Trent Dilfer. Can you say Super Bowl? Let's not get too carried away yet, but it wouldn't suprise if it happened.
*Flacco became the third rookie QB to win their first post-season start. Everybody knows Ben Roethlisberger did it, but I completely forgot about Shaun King (Tampa Bay 2001), where did he go?
*Chad Pennington had a great season and certainly deserved his second Comeback Player of the Year award, but on Sunday he remembered that he indeed was Chad Pennington.
*If the Vikings are serious about winning they cannot go in to next season with Tavaris Jackson and Gus Frerotte as their quarterbacks.
*It's hard to believe that a little more than a month ago the Eagles actually benched Donovan McNabb. Expect both him and head coach Andy Reid to return to Philly in '09.