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Brady/Belichick At Least 2 Seed And Saturday Night Notes

January 15, 2022

It is four days shy of 20 years and this is the 21st season inclusive, since the famed Saturday night, “snow/tuck rule/Adam Vinatieri greatness” slot 2, overtime victory by New England, QB’d by Tom Brady and coached, as they still are, by a “slipping” Bill Belichick, vs the Oakland Raiders.

Brady and Belichick were together for 6 Super Bowl victories, 9 “Supe” appearances and an incredible 9 straight seasons (’10-’18, need not put a “19” in front, as football ‘offs/the NFL or AFL was not around in 1918 or so) with at least the AFC “2” seed, which then, but no longer, yielded a home slots/division round tilt.

The Brady/Belichick Pats won 8 of those 9 home slots games, (they were/are (12-1) in home “div” games, the lone loss in a late Sunday slot 4 game to the New York Jets), going (9-0) in home Saturday night “div” games. Additionally they prevailed in a Saturday night home wild card round game vs Jacksonville (Jaguars) in ’05, before losing such a game vs Tennessee (Titans) in their last game together. 

In ’05, they suffered their only other div round loss with Belichick/Brady, at Denver (Broncos) in ’05. They won their only other road “div” slots game at San Diego (Chargers) in ’06.

Add it up and the home team went (11-1) in Brady/Belichick home Saturday night games, New England winning 10. Tonight in likely blistery, bitter cold, the Bills, in one of three “semis” reduxes (Brady and Tampa Bay vs Philly is another), in the expanded/prostituted 6 game wild card round, are 4 plus point(s) favorites vs Belichick’s Pats (have you heard Brady is with Tampa Bay (Buccaneers), where he “titled” last season and is an NFC “2” seed, but without a bye–more on that next?!)

I predict the “home thing” continues, (the road team won both “reg” tilts) and Belichick, of course an all-time great, but of late, he has made some shaky decisions. Additionally, his not knowing the Colts, and NOT the Giants were ’58 Title Game favorites, drops him a notch or three.

All that yields Bills 26 Pats 14, reversing the result of the then Boston Patriots win at Buffalo in the 1963 AFL Eastern Division playoff.

Meanwhile, Mr. Brady, who keeps on winning, despite dealing with the beyond annoying Jim Gray and doing too much extra stuff, is either at least a 2 seed or a Supe champ(last year Brady and T.B. won it all as a “5” seed, winning a no cover, Saturday night wild card round game at “Wash”) for the 10th time in 12 seasons and for the 13th time in 17 ‘offs appearances.

If Brady and the Bucs prevail as 9 point faves vs the Eagles in the first of “one too many,” three Sunday tilts, he will play at home for the 14th time in 17 slots tilts (his teams are (14-2) (see the ’49-’64 New York Yankees, winning the weaker American League, but still what an accomplishment!–by the way on NPR, correspondent Cheryl Corley said “still” “exactly” as I typed such).

I am not sure Fox/the NFL will “allow” it, as wins by T.B. and Dallas sets up a ratings bonanza, Dallas at Tampa Bay, in one slots game, but I see a shocking win, say (23-20) by the Eagles (they handed Brady one of his 3 Supe losses).

I do praise Mr. Brady for calling for compassion concerning an obviously troubled/ill Antonio Brown. Certainly I realize the “toll” it has taken over these many years to go vs Brady.  

The other semis/conference title tilt rematch this week matches the Cowboys at home (menos 3) vs the S.F. Niners. Three is operative as they met 3 straight seasons in the ‘offs twice (’70-’72) and twenty years later (’92-’94) and now are meeting for the first time, 19 years later and for a 7th time.

5 of the previous 6 playoffs meetings were in NFC Title Games, 4 of them Dallas victories. Dallas also won an incredible comeback victory in slot 2 at S.F. in ’72. Earlier that Saturday December 23rd, the Steelers won vs Oakland on the famed “Immaculate Reception” TD scored by Franco Harris (though he is now a bearded buffoon, he got far less credit than he should have as a great quarterback, thus I cite Terry Bradshaw as having scrambled, to keep the play alive and then throwing the famed, still controversial, historic pass). That also affected the point spread (some day I will recount Beano Cook’s story of the Raiders’ bettors, who did not hear the play as they were in a “Pitts” tunnel as it happened).

Well,  the “burn” suffered by SF bettors later that day was maybe worse, as SF had led significantly for much of that tilt while Pitts had also led throughout until the Snake/Stabler circled left end and TD’d giving the Raiders a very late/last minute or so lead.

Finally, I add the Dallas/SF tilt will be followed by the “Alfalfa” Michaels/NBC KC (-13) vs Pittsburgh Steelers tilt. Twice the Steelers played on the same day before a Dallas/SF playoff game.

In aforementioned, Saturday div round games in ’72, the Steelers and Cowboys won. In ’94 in Sunday Conference Title Games, first the Chargers upset the Steelers as “another over rated bargain” (cue Pat Cooper) Bill Cowher lost at home and then SF (1-5) vs Dallas in ‘offs tilts going into to tomorrow’s game, won in route to the 5th and to this point, last Supe crown.

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