Monday, January 11, 2010

Bay Area Football

SAN FRANCISCO - AUGUST 22:  San Francisco 49er...Image by Getty Images via Daylife
Just how interested are Bay Area football fans in watching the NFL playoffs, since neither the San Francisco 49ers or the Oakland Raiders have taken part since the 2002-2003 season?
Despite what's become a frustrating, seven-year itch for the fans,  and  for two teams who've combined for eight Super Bowl titles....this weekend's games had some interesting national story lines.
Today, the Phoenix Cardinals scored an overtime defensive touchdown  to beat the Green Bay Packers 51-45, in the highest scoring offensive show in playoff history.
They move on to play the suprising Saints in New Orleans, while yesterdays victorious Dallas Cowboys round-out the National Conference line-up by battling the Vikings in Minneapolis next week.
In the American Conference, the Baltimore Ravins shocked the New England Patriots today 33-14, and will visit the heavily favored Indianapolis Colts.  Meanwhile, the New York Jets fly west to San Diego to play the Chargers....the closest to a hometeam that we have. 
So, what's happened to our local teams?  The 49ers glory days began precisely 28-years ago today, when Dwight Clark made "The Catch" against Dallas on January 10th, 1982. Five Super Bowl rings followed, however, the last one happened 15-years ago! 
Meanwhile, the Raiders won their first Super Bowl 33-years ago yesterday on January 9th, 1977....and on January 22nd will mark exactly 26-years since they won their third and final world championship at Super Bowl 18.
Although they did reach the big game 7-years ago, the Raiders lost badly in Super Bowl 37, and haven't come close  to recovering since..
The 49ers are probably closer to re-entering the playoffs under 2nd-year headcoach Mike Singletary, who improved the team by winning eight times....while the Raiders finished with an NFL leading 7th-strait season with 11 or more losses.
If  Oakland does what's expected,  and fires their 2nd-year headcoach Tom Cable, it would make nine  different  Raider headcoaches to lose their jobs over the past 20-years!
For the Raiders to really improve, Owner Al Davis needs to retain Tom Cable and fire himself, at least by way of hiring on a general manager who can cut loose of Quarterback JaMarcus Russell, and continue to develop the Raiders talented young Al takes a back seat!
The 49ers just need to continue improving with quarterback Alex Smith, Pro Bowlers Vernon Davis and Patrick Willis....who,  like Nnamdi Asomugha of the Raiders, have become genuine team leaders.
A handful more players like these on both teams, would no doubt restore NFL playoff games to the Bay Area, and probably spice up interest for everyone....not only the hardcore fans. 

Thanks, and enjoy next weeks games.

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