By Mark Felicetti
This article contains a recap of the NFL Conference Championship games and a model of successful give-and-take dynamics (for both men and women) that can be extrapolated over an entire relationship.
The Denver Broncos hosted the New England Patriots in the AFC match up.
It took a while for things to heat up, and Denver only managed a field goal in the first quarter, but Broncos Quarterback Peyton Manning played a near-perfect game.
Throwing for 400-yards, and two TD’s, Manning had no interceptions which has been a problem for him in playoffs past.
Patriots QB Tom Brady never seemed to get into a steady rhythm and New England was completely shut out in two quarters.
Denver, on the other hand, took the lead and never looked back. They put up points in each period of play, and beat the Pats handily, 26-16.
On the other side of the coin, sparks flew fast in the NFC game in Seattle between the San Francisco 49ers and the Seahawks.
On the first play of the game the Niners defensive broke through the line, stripped the ball from Seahawk QB Russell Wilson, and recovered deep in the Seattle red zone.
S.F. Quarterback Colin Kaepernick couldn’t take full advantage of the turnover, but two minutes and fifteen seconds into the game the 49ers were up 3-0 on a field goal.
At the top of the second quarter Kaepernick kept the ball on back-to-back runs for 32 and 58 yards that set up a touchdown and sent the Niners into the locker room sporting a 10-3 lead.
It was evident in both the Conference games that the officials were not calling penalties for holding or pass interference in accordance to the rules.
This has become a recurrent problem in the playoffs.
The refs have stated they do not want a game to be decided on a penalty call.
The militant ignorance of that statement is that a game is then decided on that same penalty that was not called … which is worse?
A team is awarded for fouling and playing unfairly.
It translates to this, the officials do not have the backbone (or other anatomical parts) it takes to make the right call, and stand by it.
The entire complexion of this game changed due to increasingly bad calls by the officiating unit.
The Niners were flagged for a hit to the head. Replay clearly showed there was no such contact.
A receiver for San Francisco was pulled to the ground by his facemask, and his helmet was pulled off … no flag.
Another receiver caught the ball, took two steps, and was tackled. He kept control of the ball to the ground. It was declared incomplete.
There were several other poor calls, the worst of which being a roughing the Kicker penalty (that was not called) which cost the 49ers a first down possession and gave the ball to the Seahawks. Seattle then scored during that series.
Seattle fans threw food at an injured 49er as he was carted off the field.
Seahawk Tackle Richard Sherman’s embarrassing rant, what he said, and how he acted proved him to be the thug he claims he is not.
Playing against the Seahawks is tough. Playing in Seattle is even tougher. But playing against the officiating crew makes it insurmountable.
Momentum shifted, Kaepernick tried to force things, made mistakes, and the Hawks came back to win, 23-17.
Too bad the game wasn’t played clean and without controversy.
Seattle will play Denver in the Super Bowl scheduled for Sunday, Feb. 2.
Here comes the relationship advice.
There should be a payoff for any lady that respects the crazy importance men put on this game.
She should not make plans of any kind on that day that would interfere with the game.
Some guys will want to be alone, some want to be in a crowd, and others will want to watch the game with their girl.
If women respect the sanctity of that sporting event, then men need to follow in like kind.
Guys step up and show your appreciation for the woman that let you sit and watch TV every Sunday for the last six months.
Valentine’s Day is around the corner.
Plan on getting flowers. But present them early in the week to avoid lines and price gouging.
Follow that with the chocolates she likes. Again, early keeps you out of long lines and extends the celebration for your Sweetheart.
Plan on dropping some coin (and without grousing) for dinner … but never on the 14th. Any good restaurant is crowded and you’ll be treated like cattle.
You don’t want your date “herded.” Make reservations later in the weekend, at a place she likes.
Want to be a hero?
Make her dinner on Valentine’s Day.
It can be simple. But if that scares you, send an email to me at email@example.com and I will send you some recipes.
One is so easy; all you have to do is boil water. And another idea calls for no cooking at all.
I’ll even suggest some wine pairings and desserts.
Be a blessing to the woman who has put up with you all season.