Today was a day for Oakland Raider Fans to rejoice and be glad in the misery of rivalries past. For on this day the regular season ends and teams once thought destined for the promised land (aka NFL playoffs) found their hopes and dreams dashed in the blink of a Sunday afternoon touchdown.
It just so happens that many of the teams leaking agony-of-defeat tears from their eyes this marvelous Sunday night are Raider hating rivals who finally got what they deserved. Someone give me a drum roll please while I list the "Crying Game" losers who choked on their early season success:
Topping our list of course is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (9-7). The team who stole Christmas by luring a young Raiders coach to Tampa, then returned the following season to upset the Raiders in "Gruden Bowl 2002." " Who's The Bi@tch Now?
Then there's the dynastic New England Patriots (11-5). The team who's playoff success and Brady lovefest began with referee Walt Coleman's "Tuck Rule" call in the infamous "Snow Bowl 2001" against the Raiders. Their unlucky end to another magical season is almost as good as seeing them lose to the NY G-men in SBXLII. Who's the Bi@tch Now?
Next up to Cry are the division rival Denver Broncos (8-8). The team whose coach has a personal vendetta against Raiders owner Al Davis for default of payment as Raiders head coach (1988-89). He enjoys nothing more than embarassing the Raiders any chance he gets. A Mile-High Meltdown sends them back to that mile high wintry wonderland of hell called Denver. Who's The Bi@tch Now?
We can't forget the New York Jets (9-7), who've been hating the Raiders since we beat them in the AFC Championship game of 67', then returned in 68' to defeat them in the infamous "Heidi Bowl" game before letting Broadway Joe off the hook to advance to SBIII. The Raiders shoulda been in back-to-back Super Bowls in the 60's. Who's The Bi@tch Now?
And shouldn't we include the Dallas Cowboys (9-7) on this crying list? The team who labeled themselves "America's Team" back in the 70's when the Raiders were the winningest team in the league. Many experts predicted Dallas would represent the NFC in this season's super bowl. Tonight the only thing the crying cowboys represent is "How To Marry A Millionaire" and lose. Who's The Bi@tch Now?
And just because a Chicago fan boisterously criticized my wearing of silver and black gear this year, and my continued commitment to the Raiders, I add Lovey Smith and a disappointing "Da Bears" (9-7) team to the Crying Game list. Da Bears were knocked out of Da Playoffs by the Houston Texans today. Just so happens the Raiders convincingly beat the Texans last weekend. Who's The Bi@tch Now?
So as the clock strikes twelve on NBC Sunday Night's game finale, where the Chargers just finished stomping the crying Broncos 52-21, let's recognize those teams who finished the season admirably and find themselves heading into the 2008 NFL Playoffs:
Indianapolis Colts / Baltimore Ravens
New York Giants / Carolina Panthers / Minnesota Vikings Arizona Cardinals
Atlanta Falcons / Philadelphia Eagles