When did it become the norm in America to shop before, during and after the holidays? When I was a kid, my parents sneaked away after work on a random night in early December to buy my Christmas presents (my favorites were games for my Sega Master System or WWF wrestler figurines).
They didn’t wake up at 3 a.m. to wait in line at some store on Black Friday. They didn’t buy additional crap on Cyber Monday. And they didn’t use the Holidays as an excuse to buy a bunch of stuff for themselves on the day after Christmas.
Speaking of the day after Christmas, I never once rushed to a nearby store to exchange one of my presents. If I got a Ricky Steamboat wrestling figure, then by God, that’s the wrestling figure I played with until my birthday came around.
Shopping for kids these days isn’t what it used to be. It’s hard. I don’t envy parents one bit. If I ever become a parent, I’m going to ask my kid to make me a list of things he doesn’t want in addition to the things he wants. I guarantee you the don’t want list will be longer than the want list.
Sunday’s season season finale against the Lions doesn’t mean anything for the Packers, but there are still some things I want and don’t want to see. To make sure Mike McCarthy and the Packers aren’t confused about what I want and don’t want, I made a couple of lists below..
Even though I’m not a big believer in game-to-game momentum, if the Packers do and don’t do everything on my lists Sunday, I’ll feel like a kid on Christmas morning about this team heading into the playoffs. There will be no need to take anything back to the store.
- Injuries. Duh. Just getting that one out of the way.
- Aaron Rodgers to play. There’s no need to put the MVP out there against the goons that make up the Lions defense.
- Missed field goals. I don’t care if the game is meaningless. Crosby needs to go into the postseason confident and on a roll.
- Clay Matthews to play. His hamstrings are fragile enough.
- Charles Woodson to play. He’s our best player in the secondary. Never thought I’d be saying that at the end of this season.
- A.J. Hawk to stop the ballcarrier in his tracks at least five times. I’m sick of seeing Hawk get dragged for three or four extra yards after initial contact. Make the hit, wrap up, and bring the ballcarrier to the ground immediately…then figure out how to do it again two weeks later in the playoffs.
- Matt Flynn to make some money. We see it almost every offseason: Some team inexplicably throws huge money at another team’s backup QB based on a few good performances. Flynn has an outside shot of being that QB this offseason.
- Somebody on the defensive line to get a consistent pass rush. Raji? Wynn? Wilson? Pickett? Somebody?! ANYBODY?!?! If the Packers miraculously get a lineman to help Matthews rush the passer in the postseason, there is no way this team loses.
- Chad Clifton to start at left tackle. It’s time to see if the old guy can still go. Vanden Bosch and Avril will be good tests.