With Impressive, Quiet Force

You never hear a snow-storm creeping up on the land, but you certainly do feel its presence in the distance. Early in the week, Coach McCarthy told reporters that the team was ready, that they were itching to play, that the game could not get here soon enough. But when the game started on Sunday, they sure didn’t look ready. They didn’t sound ready. Even still, there remained a feeling that an impressive force remained. Outside, the light shimmered behind the clouds and the country-side appeared calm, even as most of Wisconsin sat frozen in a state of panic.
At this moment I was sitting in an Electric Blue Shanty on a frozen lake in Northern Wisconsin. Yep, I was ice fishing again. The wife is going to kill me this year for sure. I’ve been ice fishing eight of the past eleven weekends and six of the last six. At least we’ve been catching some lately. Anyhoo, between the two shanties in our party we had five fishermen and you could’ve heard a crappie fart 15 feet below us on the lake bottom. We were all just shocked.
After spotting the Sea-Hawks 14 points in the first few minutes of the contest, however, Brett Favre and the rest of the Packers dropped the hammer and never looked back. Consequently, the fishing picked right back up once we scored that first touchdown. Anybody watching from shore with binoculars might have thought us insane as a rabid bowfin. When General Grant redeemed himself and punched in the tying score, we erupted onto the ice amidst a fit of high-fives and hoots and hollars loud enough to wake the U.P.
Here’s a fun fact: Since becoming the featured back in the Monday Night game in Denver, Ryan Grant has more rushing attempts and yards than anyone else in the NFL. He is also making a few million dollars less than most featured backs in the league, including Ahman Green.
Aside from those two early fumbles and the roughing the kicker penalty, the Packers played a real doozie of a game, in my opinion. Brett Favre kept it simple while putting up ultra-fine numbers, and the defense played outstanding, vicious football, especially in the second half when the snow turned blinding. Atari Bigby really exemplified the Packers’ mentality best, landing brutal hits all over the field like a man possessed in a beast-mode trance, which led to a key early turnover by the Sea-Hawks. Maybe it was a mixture of adrenaline and pike fever and the snow, but it looked like the Packers were playing in a different, faster dimension than Holmgren’s squad.
Well, hey, look at that! My other predictions worked out pretty well, especially the ones that counted. After many years of doubt and sorrow, Brett Favre will play his second NFC Championship at Lambeau Field and his fourth overall. There were many times when I thought I’d never see that again, but life is funny like that. Don’t be fooled, dear readers. These Giants are not the Giants of week two… but then again, these Packers are far superior to the Packers of week two. After the Divisional game, McCarthy was asked again about his team’s confidence. He replied, in so many words, that the team believes they are going to win the Super Bowl. I’m a believer, too.
There just is not enough space here to go into all the fine details of the NFC Championship, so I will work up a bonus online dispatch for publication later this week. I will note at this moment, however, that I don’t think it’ll be close. Mark it, folks: New York – 10, Green Bay – 33. Until next week, then.