As we approach the end of the regular season, non-playoff people (that includes Footballz Talk, since MNF ends before the playoffs, and we would not want to pollute
the great import of the Second Season with our blatherings) begin to reflect on what has transpired over these past 14 weeks. This even includes football television producers. I can see in
my mind now, sometime in early April, the Monday Night Football team sitting down
over (let's say) Chinese to talk about the schedule and feeling pretty good
about themselves. The games for the most part have been good (with one notable exception), the announcing team hasn't been too embarrassing
(although we all know a little too well what is in this dude's vault), and nobody has gotten upset about the intro that exploits
bronzeface. Unfortunately the end of the season is a bete noir
for schedule-makers everywhere. There is no real way of predicting how the
season will turn out, who will be surprisingly good (yeah!) and who will underwhelm (ha-ha).
That brings us to this week's matchup, The
Defending NFC Champion Arizona Cardinals vs. The San Francisco 49ers. When
looking at this game in the off-season, I am sure it looked like this would be a
showdown for the NFC West title. (Which is something worth having, despite what the press
might tell you, since fully half of the last four Super Bowls have involved the NFC West
Champions. Take that, East Coast Sports Media Establishment!) When this match was promoted to Monday Night, the Cardnals had
been just a couple of toes from taking the Super Bowl, and the Niners had finished strong
with a dynamic (pants
droppingly so) new head coach. These, of course, would be the rising powers of the West
for years to come.
The suits at ESPN turned out to be only half right. The
Cardnals are good -- very good -- but the Niners are a different story.
Cardnals are a juggernaut when they have the ball. A rejuvenated Kurt Warner
(perhaps his powers come from his wife/frilled demon/soup saleswoman?) throws to the best
receivers in football: so-good-he-requires-no-nickname Larry Fitzgerald and Dr.
Brokenface Anquan Boldin. (Please to not get Brokenface
confused with this. Also, I'm sorry.) And they just trashed the Vikings last
week. (Bret Favre, Ya burnt).
The Niners have been a bit of a disappointment. They've flip-flopped quarterbacks, gone away from their bread-and-butter running
game, and not even Mike Singletary's giant cross necklace can help. (The
coincidence of perhaps the most faith-heavy coach in the NFL plying his wares in
San Francisco is pretty awesome. For a next step in GLBT/football/faith
reconciliation: can we get Tony Dungy to move his football camp to P-Town?) This game will
not be an epic showdown for playoff position, but hopefully it will be such a
blowout that Matt Leinart will get into the game and we can talk about this and this.
Foot Ballz Talk is a live internet broadcast in which "two guys talk
about football during a Monday night and play records." It is produced
by Mac and TD (familiar to fans of the musical endeavors Big Digits and Bodega Girls), and has been described by us (not by them) as "Mystery Pigskin Theater 3000." Each Monday, we'll publish the FBT preview of that night's contest. You can listen to Foot Ballz Talk on the internet, or follow them on Facebook and Twitter.