Posted: November 20, 2012 in NFL FOOTBALL

There are several things in life we learn the hard way. But there are also those few times where we can learn our lesson, and escape the punishment that could’ve as well.

Like when you zoom past a state trooper, going 15 mph over the speed limit on a crowded highway. You know he’s coming for you, as his car slowly pulls out. Suddenly everyone is happy going 5 miles under the limit. Your eyes are locked on him inching closer in your rear-view mirror. The closer he gets, the tighter your stomach becomes. Then he flips on his lights, and pulls the car beside you. You’ve escaped this one, and all it cost you was a new pair of underwear. Sometimes, lessons don’t come the hard way.

This week felt the same way. I usually have weeks where I learn hard lessons, because all those see-saw games seem to tip the opposite direction than what I picked. That wasn’t the case this week.

I sweated out the 1 ‘o’ clock games on Sunday, as 5 out of 8 teams I picked, and in some cases the much better team, looked to be headed to an “L” this week. I couldn’t stand to look at the rolling game updates at the top of my screen. I was literally sick thinking about the mix-up losses by the Packers, Falcons, and Texans would cause. Especially when they all faced teams under .500. Luckily, before the final second ticked off their respective clocks, each team had sorted out whatever issues it was having through most of their game.

What I learned this week is that you can’t count anyone out. It doesn’t matter how bad a team may look one week or on paper, these are professionals. These players play with a pride like no other sport. Only in college football is one game more important. And, unlike the NBA, when teams in the National Football League are bad, they don’t quit on the coach and their team. Many of these teams are at the point where they are ready to play “spoiler”, and create their own milestones this season. Imagine if the outcome was reversed, and Jacksonville scores 40+ points on Houston, and wins the game. 40 points against a stout defense. They would have a victory over one of the best teams in the league. Rookie Justin Blackmon has the highlight game of his young career. Several positives to build on.

Of the Cleveland Browns, who have been at the bottom of the league for years, when you look at their entire record. But if you look deeper into their 2-8 season, 5 of their losses were by 7 points or less. They’ve been in their games, playing with tremendous heart. They’re not giving anybody an easy day of work.

You have to take each of these teams seriously. It just seems like some of the better ranked teams are taking the week of preparation easy when they are facing certain teams.


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