Packers should start printing playoff tickets |

Packers should start printing playoff tickets

Sports Geek
Jeff Sauer
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Jeff Sauer

One thing is very clear at the midway point of the NFL season. The Green Bay Packers are by far the creme de la creme of professional football.

Separating the rest of the playoff pretenders and contenders reads more like your daughter’s relationship status on Facebook – “It’s complicated.”

Heading into last weekend’s games, 22 of 32 teams in the league had a .500 or better record, leading us to believe there is some parity taking place, along with a multitude of teams capable of capturing lightning in a bottle down the stretch to grab a playoff spot.

But, upon further review, the standings also show that eight of the 12 playoff teams from last season already have winning records this year.

And therein lies the rub.

Most people get tired of watching the same teams winning consistently, year after year, so we end up spending Sunday afternoon’s quietly rooting for upstart, long-suffering and wannabe teams like the, Bills, 49ers and Lions. Cheering for the underdog is the American way – and rightfully so.

So, can anyone dethrone the Packers and win the Super Bowl?

Probably not, but the Pack won Super Bowl XLV as a wild card team, and coaches are quick to point out – “It’s not who you’re playing, but when you’re playing them” – meaning that any team can get hot and make a serious run in the playoffs. Let’s hope so. New blood is good for the game.

The Broncos are not one of the teams in the mix for postseason aspirations. The growing pains are becoming unbearable to watch and the debacle against Detroit was as ugly as they get.

But the show must go on. Three of their next 4 games are against divisional opponents.

Poor Terrell Owens – literally.

He’s pouting again; this time because the NFL scouts didn’t show up for his workout last week and the guy has child support payments to make, despite making over $60 million in his career.

I feel bad for him. About as bad as I felt for those California inmates that went on a prison hunger strike a while back.

Nice to see Matt Duchene bury the game-winner on Sunday against the Kings. Aside from a few shootout-winning goals, he hasn’t been on the radar much in the early part of the season. His ice time is down close to 20 percent from last year and the Avs are simply going to need better production from their star center if they want to play with the big boys.

The great Wayne Gretzky once said, “Everyone skates to where the puck is. I skate to where I think the puck is headed.” This pretty much sums up Avs rookie Gabriel Landeskog.

Everyone raves about the skill set he possesses, but watch him closely. His most impressive attribute is the ability to anticipate and read the play as it develops. The kid is wise beyond his years.

Speaking of shootouts, I like them as much as the next guy, but I like 4-on-4 overtime hockey better. Here’s one vote to increase regular season overtimes to 10 minutes instead of five.

As strange as it may sound, shootouts are somewhat anti-climactic in comparison to a game-winner in overtime.

Jeff Sauer is a longtime western Colorado resident and former Roaring Fork Valley resident. He can be reached at

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