What’s Up with Hollywood Sports
By Kevin “Hollywood” Hastings
If you’re new to the poll, each week we eliminate one team from what we think is a chance to win the Super Bowl. I do reserve the right to remove a team from the eliminated list if they somehow make the playoffs. Saying goodbye to the Atlanta Falcons who were officially eliminated on Monday Night when the Giants destroyed the Redskins in Washington. Atlanta had high expectations coming into the season but injuries and a few bad breaks here and there and you’re looking at a team who thinks they’re playoff caliber, yet eliminated with two weeks to go. Atlanta has a huge upside with youth and talent all over the team. QB Matt Ryan and RB Michael Turner will lead this team to playoff fortunes in the next few years. This year though we say goodbye to the Dirty Bird. Stay hot Atlanta.
Eliminated: Falcons, 49ers, Bears, Seahawks, Bills, Panthers, Redskins, Chiefs, Bucs, Rams, Lions, Titans, Raiders, Browns, Jets, Dolphins, Texans
THE FAT LADY’S WARMING UP GROUP
15. Jaguars (7-7) - When I originally wrote the draft for this article on Sunday night I had the Jaguars elminated but the Giants win on Monday over the Redskins eliminated the Falcons from the playoffs. Jacksonville is on thin ice right now. Last week they were qualified for the playoffs and now they have to jump a few teams to get there. A tough remaining schedule doesn’t bode well for the Jags.
14. Steelers (7-7) - The Steel City got back into playoff contention with a big win on Sunday. They still have to win out to get in but they can do it. How amazing is Ben Roethlisberger in the 2-minute offense? There’s a reason this guy has two Super Bowl rings already.
13. New York Giants (8-6) - I just don’t know what to make of the Giants and their inconsistency throughout the year. They’ll beat a good team one week and get beat by a sorry one the next. They’re good enough to make a run at the playoffs but this team won’t be in Miami for the Super Bowl unless they buy their own tickets.
IN THE PLAYOFFS, FOR NOW
12. New England Patriots (9-5, #4) - New England looks very vulnerable especially on defense. This looks like a first round loss while New England is in a small rebuilding period.
11. Baltimore Ravens (8-6, #5) - How big is this week’s matchup against the Steelers? Both teams are 7-7 and the loser will be eliminated from playoff contention. The last game these two played was a Ravens win in overtime. You’re going to want to watch this game Sunday.
10. Denver Broncos (8-6, #6) After a 6-0 start Denver’s hanging on to a spot in the playoffs. They may have to win the next two to qualify but it helps to have an unguardable WR in Brandon Marshall.
9. Arizona Cardinals (9-5, #4) - This team barely beat the Lions after getting drilled the week before. This team is the most unreliable in the league. They win the big games and lose the little ones. I would hold my bets when it comes to Arizona. They could win the Super Bowl or get trounced in the first round.
8. Cincinnatti Bengals (9-5, #5) - It had to be really tough to take the field a few days after one of their teammates (Chris Henry) died in Charlotte falling off the back of a pickup truck. The Bengals gave all they had but ran into the lighting bolts and got electrocuted.
7. Green Bay Packers (9-5, #5) - The Pack lost to a Steelers team fighting for their playoff lives. The Pack are settled in a playoff perth more than likely and almost have nothing else to play for except to clinch. They should finish 10-6.
5. Philadelphia Eagles (10-4, #3) - Philly’s in first place right now but Dallas owns the tiebreaker and get to play each other in the last game of the season, in Dallas, most likely for home field advantage in a rematch the next week. Philly’s really inconsistent right now and their defense has struggled.
6. Dallas Cowboys (9-5, #6) - Who Dat? Dem Cowoys dats who! Dallas took down the undefeated Saints last Saturday and made a statement to the rest of the NFC that they are ready to rumble in the playoffs. Big D is still fighting with Philly for 1st place and a home game in the first round. Dallas finishes at Washington and home to Philly. Let Romo be Romo and all will be fine and dandy in Big D.
4. San Diego Chargers (11-3, #2) - The Bolts have won 9 straight and 17 straight in December. The hottest team in football has now but clinched the #2 seed in the AFC. The Chargers lost to the Super Bowl Champ Steelers in the playoffs last season and to the undefeated Patriots the year before that. The real question is who did they beat before those games to get there? The Indianapolis Colts! Oooh I can’t wait til playoff time!
3. Minnesota Vikings (11-3, #2) - How can you lose to the Carolina Panthers after seeing the Saints lose on Saturday and home field advantage is at stake? Minnesota’s struggling right now and they look out of ryth
m. I missed it somehow but Farvre was briefly benched early in the game by Brad Childress and they got into a heated discusssion. Brad, you can’t fly to Mississippi a half dozen times, beg, plead, and bride, name Brett Favre the Savior of the team after training camp and before he’s taken a snap in practice, and then bench the future Hall of Famer! It’s Brett Favre! This team is on skates.
2. New Orleans Saints (13-1, #1) - The Saints ran into a Cowboys buzzsaw in need of a win and a little December redemption. The Saints have been close to losing for weeks now and they finally did. Dallas showed the blueprint on how to beat them but the bad news is that you have to almost play a perfect game to do so.
1. Indianapolis Colts (14-0, #1) - The Colts are now 2 wins away from an undefeated regular season. Don’t you know Peyton Manning and the bunch would love to rub an undefeated Super Bowl run in the Patriots faces. If you were playing Texas Hold’em and these are the cards you got after the river you’d go all in with your pocket Colts.
THIS WEEK’S WINNERS IN ALL CAPS
Last Week 8-8 / Overall 147-76 (.659)
Chargers @ TITANS / Bills @ FALCONS
Chiefs @ BENGALS / Raiders @ BROWNS
Seahawks @ PACKERS / Ravens @ STEELERS
Texans @ DOLPHINS / Jaguars @ PATRIOTS
Bucs @ SAINTS / Panthers @ GIANTS
Lions @ 49ERS / Rams @ CARDINALS
Jests @ COLTS / Broncos @ EAGLES
COWBOYS @ Redskins / VIKINGS @ Bears