20 Days of Football: Brett Favre & Mike Sherman Reunite...Sort Of
I don't recall a year in which going into the final week of the NFL season every playoff team was set but none of the seedings are in place. That's what the NFC looks like going into Week 17. We know the six entrants but we don't know who will play where. Tonight's game between Minnesota and Chicago will go a long way in determining what the postseason will be like for the Vikings and what the offseason will look like for Chicago.
It seemed like the Bears just gave up last week in a 31-7 loss to Baltimore. As the 5-9 Bears play out the season the future of coach Lovie Smith is in doubt and at least for now the Jay Cutler trade appears to be a bust. It certainly has been a lost season for a team many believed would challenge for the NFC North title. The Vikings have been the polar opposite. Brad Childress is secure in his job after signing a contract extension and the acquisition of Brett Favre has paid immense dividends. However, it is late December and the Vikings have faded a bit, opening the door to a shadow of doubt as to how good this team is. I've said it all season and I'll say it once more, Favre has to prove that he can still play at a high level throughout the entire season. He has had a tremendous run considering his age and after two straight losses by the New Orleans Saints the door to the #1 seed in the NFC is open. But do the Vikings have what it takes to go to the next level? Indeed, Minnesota can end up anywhere from #1 to #4 in the NFC depending on what happens tonight. After a Childress/Favre verbal dustup and two losses in three games a loss to the lowly Bears will put the Vikings in a state of uncertainty.
And as we near the New Year college football ramps up into high gear. Georgia meets Texas A&M in the AdvoCare V100 Independence Bowl. With the loss of Matthew Stafford and Knowshown Moreno everyone knew it would be a tough year for the Bulldogs but surprisingly offense was not a problem during the regular season. Georgia's problems stemmed on the defensive side as illustrated in brutal losses to Tennessee and Kentucky. Even in a win over Arkansas in September Georgia gave up 41 points. Texas A&M had similar problems in year two under former Packers coach Mike Sherman. The Aggies appear to be catching on to Sherman's West Coast philosophy but defense, outside of hybrid DE/OLB Von Miller, has been a big problem. Both teams should have momentum coming into this game as Georgia defeated rival & ACC champion Georgia Tech in the season finale while Texas A&M went toe-to-toe with #2 Texas on Thanksgiving night. One thing is for sure, with the lack of defense from both teams, this should be a high scoring affair.