Super Bowl XL becomes tainted

…or perhaps more tainted depending on your point of view.

I am one to promote the conspiracy theory that the NFL is fixed. I am a huge football fan, I love the Bills and I enjoy watching football on Sundays. But, sometimes the circumstances for these Super Bowls are a bit much.

Example, the Patriots winning in 2001 after 9/11, the Saints rising to greatness only a few years after tragedy struck Louisiana or Jerome Bettis leading the Steelers to victory in his hometown in his final professional game. There is more to my reasoning but here are the brass tacks:

  • There is far too much money at stake from advertising, tickets and merchandise for the Super Bowl to be lackluster in any way, shape or form.
  • The regular season and playoffs are truly competitive and untainted. Only when it really comes down to it will there be any sort of interference.
  • Because of my first reason, the NFL knows who will be better for their revenues at the end of the Super Bowl.
  • There is no decided winner when that game starts, but I’m sure the NFL has told the right people who needs to be the winner when the clock reads zero.

I understand this is far-fetched. But, if you look close enough at the past few Super Bowls some of the reasoning makes sense.

Perhaps the guilt of his duties in Super Bowl XL caused Bill Leavy to admit he made mistakes in the 2006 Super Bowl.

This was the Super Bowl that really put me over the edge. There were so many bad calls, mostly against the Seahawks that I began to wonder what was going on. It was after the phantom chop block penalty on Matt Hasselbeck that I was turned off by the game.

Bear in mind that I have no vested interest in either team in this case. There were numerous questionable calls that went against the losing team and the circumstances of the game (see above) plus the fact that Steelers t-shirts would probably out-sell Seahawks t-shirts could have been a factor.

Conspiracy or not, I am glad Leavy admitted his wrongdoing. While the penalties that are mentioned in the story would not have altered the game, the offensive pass interference penalty on Darrell Jackson (who got me mad fantasy points in ’06) was a serious gaffe.

It is interesting to see the reaction from the Seahawks, who obviously saw the poor officiating as a major contribution to the game.

I give Leavy all the credit in the world for coming forward. It is clear this has stayed with him and he must understand that the outcome could have been drastically different had the calls gone the Seahwaks way. Just think, if the fourth quarter holding penalty hadn’t been called and the Jackson pass interference penalty negated, that is a 21-point swing for Seattle. Those 21 points win them the Super Bowl.

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