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Old 01-23-2011, 09:07 AM   #1
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Default They're hard to hate, but for a Man of Steel, Jets need to crash

They're hard to hate, but for a Man of Steel, Jets need to crash
Published: January 23, 2011

(This is an absolute crackup but I can't get the video to embed. Check the article URL. The video is hysterical. - mesa)

"Excuse me for workin' my jaws."

- the late, great Myron Cope, legendary voice of the Pittsburgh Steelers

It's hard to hate the New York Jets, but I'm working on it.

The Jets meet my beloved Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Championship tonight for a bid to play either the Chicago Bears or the Green Bay Packers in Super Bowl XLV in Dallas on Feb. 6. Tonight's contest will be played at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, with the Steelers favored by a field goal.

If not for the Jets, the game would be played in Foxboro, Mass., and the Steelers would be facing the Hated New England Patriots and quarterback Tom Brady, a soulless killing machine sent here from the future to destroy all that is good and right about "America's Game."

The Jets shocked the world in beating the Hated Patriots last week, and watching Tom Brady trudge off the field with his shoulders slouched and his pretty face twisted with disappointment is an image I will treasure for years to come. I'm thinking about having it stamped onto a commemorative plate. This also seems an opportune moment to note that His Infernal Majesty Patriots head coach Bill Belichick - busted a few seasons back for having opponents' sideline signals secretly videotaped - doesn't seem like such a genius now that he can't cheat.

Given their gift to humanity in retiring the Hated Patriots, I was having trouble summoning the kind of intense dislike for the Jets that I feel for say, the Hated Baltimore Ravens, whom the Steelers sent to the golf course last week. Sure, Jets coach Rex Ryan is an ex-Raven and a big, fat loudmouth, but so far his team has backed him up.

Steeler Nation and just about every sportswriter alive hoped Rex would talk trash on the Steelers this week, but he has been nothing but uncharacteristically complimentary, which suggests he knows what he's doing. Almost no one expected the Jets to knock off Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts, let alone eject the Hated Patriots, so Rex had nothing to lose but a little face.

Count his chins. The guy has face to burn.

Bob Sanchuk barely has a single chin, and weighs less than one of Rex Ryan's legs, but he's been jawing about the Jets' flight path to Super Bowl glory since their win in Pittsburgh last month. For the unfamiliar, Bob is the award-winning graphic artist who illustrates this column. He is a model husband, father and citizen and a rabid Jets fan. He also dresses like a patient who has wandered away from a psychiatric ward, but artists are allowed to be eccentric.

Eccentricity aside, how one becomes a Jets fan is a mystery. It's like voting for Ralph Nader, eating turkey bacon or watching "Glee." I mean, what's the point? In Pittsburgh hospitals, newborns are swaddled in Terrible Towels. There isn't a toddler in the tri-state area who doesn't have a closet full of Steelers gear. You are born a citizen of Steeler Nation. Creepy? Maybe. Awesome? Absolutely.

Both of us looking for a light topic for this weekend, Bob and I settled on the Steelers/Jets matchup. We would go head-to-tiny head, each representing his team in a battle of wills and skills. First, Bob suggested a chicken wing-eating contest. After pointing out that I have cleaned the bones of thousands of wings larger than him, I suggested we play "Madden NFL" on the XBox. Bob hasn't played the game in years, and the last edition I bought was after the Steelers won Super Bowl XL five years ago. The Jets' quarterback on that game is Chad Pennington. It wouldn't have been worth the electricity.

Then a co-worker suggested paper football, once the favorite pastime of junior-high boys in every after-school detention across this great nation. The game has fallen out of favor in this digital age when kids can play "Madden" on their cellphones, but there are still a handful of purists who keep paper football alive. There are numerous leagues with websites to showcase champions and establish rules, and several sites offer online versions of the game.

We decided to go traditional, and it didn't take long for the rivalry to heat up.

BOB: "You're going down, Fatman."

ME: "Downtown to buy your mama flowers. Daisies are her favorite, because they're pale and soft, like you."

We took over the third-floor conference room, and, as analysts predicted, the game was a defensive struggle marked by miscues on both sides. I scored the game's only touchdown - a textbook hanger off the edge of the table - but Bob "bumped" the ball out of play. I threw my challenge flag, but replays proved inconclusive. Watch the video at Thetimes- tribune.com and judge for yourselves.

After what seemed like hours of pointless back-and-forth with no scoring, a co-worker barged into the conference room and profanely suggested we call the game and go back to "at least pretending to do some (bleeping) work."

Bob and I agreed to a tie, recognizing that win or lose, we were privileged athletes who had just been paid to play paper football for more than an hour. If the Jets win, I have agreed to wear Bob's Joe Namath jersey on Monday. If the Steelers win, Bob, who I'm pretty sure has never worn a necktie, will wear one of the 20 or so black-and-gold nooses hanging in my closet.

Whoever wins tonight's game, we decided to focus on what matters most: Just like the Hated Ravens, Tom Brady, Bill Belichick and the rest of the Hated Patriots will be watching on TV.

For one of us (Bob), that will have to be enough.

CHRIS KELLY, the Times-Tribune columnist, is just as big a loudmouth as Rex Ryan. Contact the writer: kellysworld@timesshamrock.com

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/opinion/...#ixzz1Bs42VWcv
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Old 01-23-2011, 09:57 AM   #2
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Default Re: They're hard to hate, but for a Man of Steel, Jets need to crash

Well that's the core of the issue.

Living on Long Island, I live with Jet fans every day and even though they can be insufferable, I DO understand why they're so pumped and with the Steelers having been in the underdog role so often (especially in '05), I can identify with what they're all feeling right now.

I really can't stand the Jets but I really can't hate them either because deep down, everyone loves a 'dog. I even told my neighbor Frank that if any team was going to end our SB run, I suppose that we could do worse than the Jets. And even though his nephews and son-in-law are stoked and primed for an upset and even though I like them as neighbors and even though I understand what the Jets and their fans are hoping for, I still bleed Black and Gold and I want the Jets shot down.

We'll see.
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Old 01-23-2011, 11:02 AM   #3
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Default Re: They're hard to hate, but for a Man of Steel, Jets need to crash

I don't hate the Jets, thats a very strong word, I very much dis like them though. I won't but them in the category of the Patriots, Ravens or Chargers for my contempt, but I was indifferent to them until this year. They brought in players I have absolutely no use for, Cromartie, the whiny and often pouty LT. (maybe its cause they are former Chargers, LOL)
I absolutely can not stand Sanchez. He has that smug arrogant look about him, it reminds me of Rivers only he 's not near as talented.

Here are 4 things that will make me smile for the next week:;

LT fumbles on his first carry, leading to a Steeler TD.

Cromartie gets toasted deep by one of our rookies (Brown or Sanders) for a TD

Sanchez throws a pic six to Ike trying to force a ball to Bongtonio

and the Steelers win!!
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Old 01-23-2011, 11:52 AM   #4
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Default Re: They're hard to hate, but for a Man of Steel, Jets need to crash

If our special teams hold up and don't give points away we should beat them.
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Old 01-23-2011, 04:15 PM   #5

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Default Re: They're hard to hate, but for a Man of Steel, Jets need to crash

Originally Posted by Steelerfreak58 View Post
If our special teams hold up and don't give points away we should beat them.
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