My favorite NFL Web site, coldhardfootballfacts.com, reports interceptions determine playoff success. That’s why the Packers were correct to let go of Brett Favre to play Aaron Rodgers. It’s also why the Bears’ No. 1 priority is to make Jay Cutler play safer.
My favorite NFL Web site, coldhardfootballfacts.com, reports interceptions determine playoff success. Since 1970, teams that throw zero interceptions win 79 percent of their games and 55 percent with one interception. It drops to 31 percent with two interceptions, 18 percent with three. Teams that throw four or more are 1-41, and that one win is against another team that threw four.
That’s why the Packers were correct to let go of Brett Favre to play Aaron Rodgers. The young and supposedly wild Favre threw fewer than 15 interceptions four times in his first six years in Green Bay and the Packers were 9-4 in the playoffs. But he threw 15 or more in each of the next 11 years and went 3-6 in the playoffs. Rodgers’ average of 10 picks is half of Favre’s rate from 1998-2008.
It’s also why the Bears’ No. 1 priority is to make Jay Cutler play safer. He was No. 2 in the NFL in interceptions as a Bronco and No. 1 as a Bear. The Bears will never go anywhere unless that stops. The easiest answer is an explosive dump-off receiver that can turn the easiest pass into a big gain, the way Percy Harvin helped Favre cut his interceptions from a league-high 22 last year to a career-best 7 as a Viking.
Steroid tale full of holes
Carlton Fisk was hailed as a steroids-battling hero on Chicago radio this week after telling the Chicago Tribune story that Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth and Willie Mays averaged 18 home runs at age 39 while Barry Bonds hit 73. As SI.com’s Joe Posnanski later pointed out, Aaron, Ruth and Mays averaged 30 homers at age 39 and Bonds hit 45. He also wrote that Fisk hit a career-high 37 homers at age 37 when no catcher that old had hit even 20 before.
As for Fisk’s contention that steroids users “were breaking the law to start with. It doesn’t have to be a baseball law,” well, the same is true for all the amphetamine abusers for five decades. Don’t blame Fisk for superficial and erroneous analysis. Blame the media, which still doesn’t cover steroids correctly, always looking for easy answers and the same old scapegoats.
Fans will never come back
Tiger Woods is dead to me. And he’ll never make a comeback like Kobe Bryant, who just became the 15th NBA player to score 25,000 points. No one hates Kobe anymore, but no one cares about him either except for NBA fans. More than half of Tiger’s fans used to be non-golf fans. His days as a crossover icon are lost in scandal. He may well go on to break Jack Nicklaus’ record of 18 major championships, but I’ll no longer drop everything to watch him if he does. Nor will many others.
Colts or rampant stupidity
The NFL playoffs are making a good argument for the BCS; who wants a playoff when the NFL’s eight playoff games so far have been decided by an average of 17.1 points?
Never has the NFL been so boring. Quick Shots is reduced to rooting for the Colts. If they don’t win, the single dumbest thing I’ll have written in my career as a sportswriter is a preseason proclamation that only the Colts, Patriots, Chargers, Steelers, Ravens, Giants and Packers had any chance to win the 2010 Super Bowl.
Rockford Register Star assistant sports editor Matt Trowbridge’s Quick Shots on Sports appear Sundays. He can be reached at (815) 987-1383 or firstname.lastname@example.org.