Congrats Chicago Bears. I guess. The Extreme Large Fruit Vessel XLI will be much less interesting with them instead of the Saints, both in terms of the actual game, and the stories leading up to it. I admit to a certain degree of fatigue about hearing about the wonderfulness of the Saints' players and how they Rebuilt that City on Rock and Roll (note that Joe Buck gave Reggie Bush a completely free pass on his outrageous taunt-front flip-and-dance routine on his TD. I have no problem with any of that, but imagine Buck's reaction if it had been, say, The Randy Moss doing those things...), but the Saints are also a more interesting Football qua Football team, I think.
In any event, all that is merely a long-winded windup (like I do), for me noting that Sean Payton made a huge tactical error that likely cost them the game, and I called it at the time. Consider, Uncle Mo has been standing on the Saints sideline since before half-time, Rex Grossman was making Eli Manning look composed, and the field conditions were miserable. Why the hell would you kick a 48 yard FG? Just pin them inside the 20, stop them again, and so on. As it was, Figgie predicitably missed (is it ever a good sign when your kickoff guy comes on to try a long FG instead of the regular kicker. Does this ever work out well?) Saints get the ball inside the 5. They panic, take a safety, and the only time the Bears look in trouble from then on was when Rex almost got picked by Uncle Mo switching sidelines in the middle of the next drive.
And all of this was so obvious at the time, I was expecting Simba's assistant coach for common sense to stop the madness, but it never happened.