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Super Bowl strategy can be very simple

January 8, 2017

Super Bowl. Yes, it’s that time of the year for football, the culmination of months of watching the fine art of implementing intricate offenses and defenses in an effort to get a large object the size of a watermelon down to one end of an artificial field, so an individual player can bump his hips, dance and throw his back out in what is called the end zone. At least that is the official definition according to a newsletter put out by aliens overseeing the planet Earth. 

And how quickly this came upon us. This sacred Sunday is sort of like when you were growing up and someone in the neighborhood got a new car. Everyone ran out of the house to see this vehicle with special air-conditioning. No more opening those small vent windows in the back that let in a mere breath of air. 

Only now the event everyone is waiting for is held inside the house, with a television the size of an aircraft carrier and a buffet that would rival anything on a cruise ship that holds a couple thousand passengers. 

Anyway, I’ve listened closely to the expert football analysts on television, so I can have some sense of why men the size of large brick buildings end up mashing, stomping and crashing into each other over this watermelon. I love a game where there are parking spaces for ambulances. 

In effort to appear knowledgeable, I will try to explain some basic principles. First there is the offense in a play that involves passing the football down the field to get to the dancing end zone. The analyst usually has a chart. He uses a pointer to show how the players are lined up on the football field. And all the players who might catch the ball have very specific assignments about where to go on the field. 

When the quarterback (that’s the guy yelling and pointing at other players) passes the ball, a series of events happens. There are players who cross in front, players who run to the back, players who zig-zag various patterns they have memorized so they dart around like gnats trying to avoid the windshield wiper on a car. And of course, the quarterback has to try to fool the other team into thinking it’s a different play. All of this is meticulously diagrammed. It has been studied by reviewing films and memorizing scientific signals from the quarterback that start with the word, “Hut.” 

Now, my idea is simple and cuts all of that out. You go back to the old street pickup game. You know, the one played in between a Buick and a beat-up Chrysler. That plan cuts down on a lot of time, and you don’t have to write anything on your wrist or listen to a microphone in your helmet that doesn’t work, but does pick up the local weather station. 

All you have to do in my offensive plan is have a bunch of guys run down the field and jump up and down, waving their arms and shouting, “Throw it to me, Bubba.” Simple as that. And if the ball bounces off a car or someone’s head, hey, it’s still in play. 

Sure, you are thinking, but what about the defense? Fair enough. I’ve seen the intricate analysis of this also. This is how you stop the other team from getting that watermelon into the end zone. 

The analyst again draws a complicated map with stick figures lined up on either side of an imaginary line. Then the defensive player who is going to make sure the guy yelling, “Throw it to me,” doesn’t catch the football is highlighted. 

To do this he runs what’s called a pattern, where he crosses the field, dodges other players, crosses the Santa Monica Freeway, gets on the 101, doubles back around and when it looks like he is doomed to defeat yells at the pass receiver, “Hey, look, there’s Elvis!” Naturally, the referee is going to look also, so the defense man may have the option of just throwing the other player into the front row of the stands. At least I know some guys who could do this. 

What about the rest of the game? There’s more??? If the television is in the trashcan when you get up in the morning, that’s all you need to know.

  • Nancy Katz has a degree in creative writing and is the author of the book, "Notes from the Beach." She has written the column Around Town for the Cape Gazette for twenty years. Her style is satirical and deals with all aspects of living in a resort area on Delmarva.

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