As a guy who grew up with intense disdain for the Dallas Cowboys that lingers to this day, and then developed similar hatred for the New England Patriots almost eight years ago, I couldn’t have been prouder of The Greatest City In The World yesterday.
After the Rams, my favorite daytime team yesterday was the New York Jets. During the week, they trash talked the Patriots. How cool was it during the summer when coach Rex Ryan said “I never came here to kiss Bill Belichick’s rings. I came here to win, let’s put it that way…. I’m certainly not intimidated by New England or anybody else.” That attitude has been picked up by Jets players and fans. Before the game, safety Kerry Rhodes went a step further “You go out from the first quarter on, from the first play on, and try to embarrass them. Not just go out there and try to win, try to embarrass them. Try to make them feel bad when they leave here. We don’t want to just beat them. We want to send a message to them, ‘We’re not backing down from you and we expect to win this game, and it’s not going to be luck, it’s not going to be a mistake.”
To cap it off, linebacker Bart Scott sang a song I loved when he promised the Jets were “going after Tom Brady today.”
All that Jets talk, and then…THEY WON! They loaded up the Patriots bulletin board, and then beat ‘em 16-9. I rooted as if I were that guy that wears the Jets fireman’s hat. Granted, the Pats aren’t what they used to be…but the Jets showed me something.
Then on Football Night in America, “America’s Team” introduced Jerry Jones’
ostentatious new stadium, but forgot to include a matching team. The gritty, tenacious Giants…even without Plaxico Burress and Steve Spagnuolo, found a way to win. How ’bout them Cowboys? Young receivers Steve Smith and Mario Manningham (you can win with young receivers?) stepped up and made big plays…and Dallas kept turning the ball over. At the end, the terrific Eli Manning marched his club down the length of the field to Lawrence Tynes’ winning field goal.
So my two most hated NFL teams fell on the same day. Thank you, New York. We owe you one.