Defense Wins The WeekendS

In sports, everyone is a winner—some people just win better than others. Like NFL defensive units who shut down their opponents and made all the difference in first-round playoff wins. When they bothered to show up.

With all the talk about how the NFL has become a pass-happy, offense first league, it was still the old standbys—rushing and defense—that determined the Wild Card winners. Joe Flacco completed four passes yesterday ... and he was the winning quarterback. His teammates forced the previously reliable Tom Brady into four turnovers. The Dallas front line hammered the Eagles all night (when the refs weren't hammering them both with penalty flags) and even as the Jets gave up 169 yards on the ground to Cedric Benson, the Bengals still couldn't put any points on the board.

Okay, so the game of the weekend (and maybe the season) did have 1,000+ yards and 12 offensive touchdowns, but even with all those wide open receivers, it was a defensive play that won the game. (Pay no attention to the hand on the facemask!) Just because Arizona and Green Bay only played eight seconds of total pass defense that doesn't mean everyone else in the league forgot how. Or that those eight seconds can't make all the difference.

So, I guess offense still sells the tickets and the other guys still win the game. Did anyone let New Orleans and Indy know that?

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Here are some other winners who did not win quite as big:

Joshua Clottey: Oh, to be a well-paid pawn in a pointless showdown between greedy egomaniacs. I hope he gets enough to buy that Blu-Ray player he's had his eye on.

Ann Althouse: Buzz Bissinger must have ordered the No. 5 with a side of rice 'cause he just got served. [via Bakes]

Minority coaching candidates: Don't you feel totally respected and empowered by Seattle's vigorous search for a guy they can pretend to think about hiring for five minutes?

Speaking of the Weekend Loser: Why would Pete Carroll gives up the highest-paying private school job in the nation just so he can prove that no one can win a championship in Seattle. Even the fake grad student rumors are more glamorous in L.A. Who wants to be accused of having love in nest in Tacoma?

Also there's this.