Saturday, January 21, 2006

Busy start to new semester

Just realized that it's been more than two weeks since my last post! The hustle and bustle of catching up with work and settling in to the new semester here has kept me from doing anything exciting, let alone write-up something about it! There are also hardly any good movies in the theater now but I must say, the thrilling NFL playoffs have more than made up for it!

Being in Indiana, I support the good ol' Indianapolis Colts, a team which this season has performed much like India did in the 2003 cricket World Cup. In the regular season, the Colts were 14 - 0 at one point, i.e. 14 wins out of 14 games and were looking to be only the 3rd team to go the playoffs with a perfect 17 - 0 record. But alas, 14 - 0 ened up as 15 - 2, and soon a slightly shaky Colts were up against the indomitable Pittsburg Steelers in the second round of the AFC Divisional playoffs. (Playoff games are in knockout format)

And what a game it was! After playing outplayed in the first 3 quarters, the Colts came back strongly in the last, making the plays happen when they absolutely had to! And so it ended up, with around 5 minutes to go, the score was 10 - 21, Colts trailing, but importantly, had posession. The ideal scenario for the Colts was a touchdown + coversion (8 points), get the ball back quickly from the Steelers and score a field goal (3 points) to send the game into overtime.

And then disaster struck! Colts' quarterback Peyton Manning's pass was intercepted and it looked like game over! But no, the validity of the interception was questioned and though video replays clearly showed that it was legal, the refree inexplicably overturned it! The Colts got back the ball, scored the 'down followed a conversion making the score 18 - 21.

And then, things continued going to plan for the Colts. The Steelers were hardly allowed to move the ball and the Colts got back posession with around two and a half mintues left. All they had to do now was get into field goal range and turn the ball over to their kicker who had a 100% record for the season!

But Manning was not able to deliver, got repeatedly sacked and the Steelers ended up with the ball at the Colts 2 yard line! One and half minutes to go! Now it was definitely game over as a few disappointed fans began streaming out of the stadium.

But no! The Steelers, in an attempt to score a touchdown to make the result beyond question, fumbled the ball which was picked up by Nick Harper of the Colts who ran it 35 yards which was incredible given that he had been cut with a knife earlier in the day during an altercation with his wife! Mind-blowing!!

The Colts then managed to run the ball up a few yards and set it up for a 46-yard field goal attempt with around 20 seconds to go. And now came the final act of the game, the final layer of icing so to speak! The Colts kicker missed the field goal attempt and missed badly as the ball went way, way to the right! And that was the end!

Hearbreak for Colts! Celebration for the Steelers! If thie was cricket, the Colts would be "chokers".

2 Comments:

Blogger Anantha said...

It was a great game. Vanderjagt had a bad day. Did you see the David Letterman show in which he kicked 46 yards dead center? Pressure can do funny things man...

6:33 PM  
Blogger Santosh Sankar said...

I didn't see that episode though they showed the clip of the kick on CNN :)

Even funnier was his response when asked why he missed so badly: "All the Steeler fans blew at the same time!"

9:14 AM  

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