Watchin' the big daddies

American football is such a brutal game, but I can't help myself – I tune in. I tell myself, At least you're not watching ultimate fighting.

The weekend saw four interesting pro pigskin contests that narrowed the field as the march to the Super Bowl continued. Three of the four favorites advanced, the exception being the mild upset pulled by the evil Tom Brady and his pirates from Mar-a-Lago-Land.

I lost $3.26 betting on these spectacles. Early on during the first game on Saturday, Aaron Rodgers of the Packers threw a pretty nice pass to a guy named Marquez Valdes-Scantling, in the end zone. If Marquez had caught it, my weekend of betting would have turned out different. But although the pass hit him in the hands, he did not hold on. Rodgers didn't look pleased. I sure wasn't.

I knew it was an omen. My brilliant wagering went downhill from there. But I experienced a good emotional release yelling at the TV at various intervals. (I have issues.)

Sadly, two of the bright young quarterbacks, such amazing athletes, suffered concussions as they were whacked by burly defenders. In the old days (like three years ago), they would have been given some smelling salts and sent back out onto the field. But fortunately for their futures as sentient beings, we don't do that any more. So they were removed from their respective lineups, and backup guys came in.

In the case of Lamar Jackson of the Ravens (top), the backup didn't get it done against Buffalo. That was no surprise, really, because Jackson himself was having some trouble figuring things out when he went down. Buffalo is darn good.

In contrast, the other fallen leader, Patrick Mahomes of the Chiefs (bottom), saw his backup hold on to beat the Cleveland Browns. Mahomes had already been limping around after he hurt his foot earlier in the game, but when he got up fom the last shot he took, he was really messed up in the head. He nearly keeled back over.

Anyway, there are now only three more football games left to watch for the season, one of which is the Super Bowl, which should probably be named the Super Spreader Bowl on account of all the people who are going to insist on having parties. Covid loves the parties.

Then it will be time for serious basketball watching, and tennis watching. I guess baseball's not too far off, either.

But did you see? The year in tennis is off to a bumpy start. The first big show is in Australia, and when the flights landed with a bunch of players on them, a few disembarking passengers tested positive for the coronavirus. Austraila is not fooling around with the Covid, and as a result of the positive tests, everybody on those flights is locked in their hotel room for two weeks.

It's about half of the players, apparently. And so half will get to practice and play warmup tournaments, while the other half can only hang out in their rooms. Break out the asterisks for the winners of this year's Australian Open.