Peter King Wants You To Know He’s Being Humble About Picking The Super Bowl

01.24.11 7 years ago 145 Comments

When we last left 2010 National Sportswriter of the Year (????!!!!!????!!!… ?… !… ?????!!!!!!!) Peter King, he was predicting a Steelers-Packers Super Bowl in the preseason. And now he has been proven right. And I think you know what that means. The Seventh Seal has been broken. The oceans shall soon turn red with blood and flood us all. Will we all perish? MAYBE. Will God appear in the flesh and save only the loftiest of our fellow men? POSSIBLY. Do you think there’s Acela in heaven, and if so, does it have better coffee than the terrestrial version? WE CANNOT KNOW.

Also, mark your calendars because tomorrow night is when Peter gets profiled on Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel! And Mary Carillo is doing the interviewing! Oh, won’t that be special?

CARILLO: PK, let’s talk coffee.

PETER: You bet, Marcus.

CARILLO: My name’s Mary.

PETER: That’s a strange name for a boy! Kids these days. Boys have girls’ names and girls have boys’ names!

Can’t wait. Hey, let’s peruse this column, shall we? A Steelers/Packers Super Bowl? ONLY IN NEW YORK, GANG. ONLY IN NEW YORK.

We’ll get to the Super Bowl matchup that Doris Kearns Goodwin would love (it’s historic, for those not familiar with Ms. Goodwin’s work)

Let me make a reference and then immediately explain that reference because I’m just gonna go ahead and assume you don’t know much of anything. Why else would you be reading this column? This Super Bowl will be quasi-Lincolnesque.

But I begin this morning with two things — the Super Bowl XLV Factoid That Will Interest Everyone, and something Packers GM Ted Thompson said, uncharacteristically, in the winning locker room 45 minutes after Green Bay 21, Chicago 14: “I think this game was good for America.”

What game? The horrible game I just watched you two play? That wasn’t good for the country at all. It was stagnant, hopeless, glum, depressing. It was like watching a fucking soup kitchen line.

He was speaking about the game just completed…

You really were? Christ. You know what’s good for America? Watching two coaches try and out-pussy one another by punting inside the opposing forty as many times as possible. SEIZE THE DAY, CHILDREN. Unless the day is mildly out of reach, then you should hand the day over to someone else who can do something useful with it.

…but he may well have been speaking about the Pittsburgh-Green Bay matchup in 13 days.

BARF. I already hate this Super Bowl. DURRR HISTORY DURRR THEY DO THINGS THE RIGHT WAY DURRRRR. Greggggg Easterbrook detects a notable lack of Glory Boyitude in this matchup, which is what Jesus would have wanted!

In the 45-year history of Super Bowls, there’s never been one with such history. Never has there been a title game with two teams more than 75 years old. And never has there been a matchup of teams with as many Super Bowl titles — Pittsburgh six, Green Bay three.

Steelers-Packers. It’s just cool.

And think of how it will impact frozen dessert topping sales! These two fanbases eat Cool Whip while sleeping!

And Jerry Jones, you built the big Arlington ballyard, halfway between Dallas and Fort Worth, for occasions just like this

Sure did! I’m sure Jerry was sitting there drawing up plans for his stadium and said to himself, “You know what would be awesome? If two teams who are not mine played for a title here! YEEHAWWW WOOOHOO I AM FUCKING IRRATIONAL!”

— a Super Bowl dripping with history

Look at the history just dripping off this game! Look! I just saw a drop of Dan Rooney’s jowl fluid seep down! Catch it in your mouth! TASTE THE TRADITION!

…and with fans who would walk a thousand miles to see the game.

Pfft. These fans can’t walk.

I can just hear those voices that spoke to Kevin Costner in Field of Dreams. Kind of. You built it, Jerry, and they will come. Oh, they will most definitely come.

“If build it, you will go 6-10. OOOOOOOOOO”

Now for a Paul Harveyish factoid:

Did you know that every American is, at heart, also an erotic American?

“What’s rewarding,” Arians said, “is that Ben saw what I saw in training camp. I saw Emmanuel Sanders [a third-round pick] and Antonio playing well, and I told Ben, ‘These kids are gonna help us in December.’ I coached him, rode ’em really hard. I was unmerciful. But Ben saw it early, saw how good they could be. I said to Ben, ‘You hug ’em, I’ll cuss ’em,’


Sitting in the press box at Soldier Field Sunday, middle of the third quarter, toothless Bears down 14-0, and Mike Wilbon walked by me. “I’m 52 years old,” said the media icon…

Whoa whoa whoa, can we not use the term “media icon” quite so liberally there? It’s fucking Wilbon. He’s the guy who yells at sports fans for being sports fans.

“and I grew up in this town, and the best quarterback my team has ever had is Erik Kramer!”

“And that is just a bunch of JUNK! Am I surprised Jay Cutler pussied out of this game? NOT IN THE LEAST. I’m not saying the Bears are racist for having three white QB’s on their roster, but they better know that South Side viewers are taking notes.”

You wanna crown me? Then crown my a–!

No. Don’t, really.

But where would I find such a large crown? Henry VIII’s crown only covers but one of your cheeks, good sir!

For those who would like to backpat me for picking Steelers 33, Packers 27 in the SI NFL preview issue last summer…

No one would like to do that.

I’d remind you that I’m the same guy who swerved over to pick the Patriots to win the AFC three weeks ago, as the playoffs began, and to face the Packers in the title game. So as much as I’d like to take a bow for nearly being right, and for having my two teams make it to Super Bowl XLV, I really can’t.

But I am proud of the principle of my picks.

Please don’t congratulate me for my picks. Please don’t congratulate me for my picks. Please don’t congratulate me for my picks.

ADMIRE me for my picks.

When I was visiting with a veteran NFL general manager the other day, I asked what he thought was the best coaching hire, head coach or assistant, so far this month. Easy, he said. “The Rams hiring Josh McDaniels,” the GM said.

Think of all the players they’ll be able to cut now!

13. San Diego (9-7). Those rumblings in Southern California are not tremors from a quake. They’re tremors of fear that the Chargers are moving to Los Angeles.

This metaphor I’m using right now? NOT TO BE TAKEN LITERALLY. It is still just a clumsily handled metaphor.

Mr. Starwood Preferred Guest Travel Note Of The Week

This seems only humorous in retrospect.

I get out of the Acela bathroom and John McCain is in my seat! And I say to him, “That’s my seat! Could you not tell by the $4,000 MacBook?” And McCain says, “But I have this MacBook too!” So funny!

Sometimes when I travel and get recognized it’s fun.


Sometimes it’s a chore.

FAN: Mr. King, can you sign my gloves?

PETER: Ugh. Whatever. I GUESS. Why doesn’t this shop have egg nog?!

One of the latter came on Sept. 7, when I flew into New Orleans for NBC to prepare for the first game of the season, the Vikings-Saints Thursday-nighter at the Superdome.

I’d just picked the Steelers to beat Green Bay, 33-27, in the Super Bowl in the Sports Illustrated preview issue, and I guess one of the local skycaps had heard about the pick. When I was waiting for my bag at the luggage carousel, this fellow came up to me and said, “You Mr. King?”

“Yes,” I said.

“You picked the Packers to win the NFC and not the Saints?”

“Yep,” I said.

“Can I ask you why?”

“I think Aaron Rodgers is going to have an MVP-type season, I love their defense, I think–”

“Let me tell you something,” the skycap said. “The Saints ain’t losing.”

“Well, I like the Saints but teams in the NFL just don’t repeat –”

“You hear me? We ain’t losing.”

“Right. OK.”

He walked away, not happy. I got my bag, went to the hotel, and thought: I never root for teams. But I really wouldn’t mind the Packers winning the NFC this year, just so on my next trip to New Orleans, a place I love, I’d scout around for the skycap and see what he thought of my prediction.


Good job, Chris Mortensen, on fleshing out the Carson Palmer-wants-out-of-Cincinnati story. I buy it 100 percent.

Good job, other reporter! That seems like an accurate report! Now, let me tell you about Goose Island IPA.

I’ve always thought he was dying to be the first quarterback of the new L.A. franchise.

NFL: We got you a team!

LA: Yay!

NFL: And Carson Palmer will be your QB!

LA: (goes back to staring at Blackberry, figuring out reasons to not want The Social Network to win Best Picture)

Ben Roethlisberger. Stats can be deceiving. Very deceiving. His passer rating of 35.5 and rushing average of 1.9 yards (11 carries, 21 yards) don’t show how he made five or six plays when his team had to have them, including the game-clinching completion to Antonio Brown.

That stats show he sucked, but they only show that he sucked for MOST of the game.

Just hoping ESPN and USA Today will stop repeating that I reported something between Tebow being “on the outs” in Denver and the Broncos wanting to trade him. I said neither. What I said on NBC was club VP John Elway told me Tebow wasn’t a good NFL quarterback right now, that if Josh McDaniels went to a team with a quarterback need, that he could urge that team to try to deal for Tebow, and that no such trade could happen until a new CBA was struck. Got it?

Yeah! How could anyone possibly get the idea of a rift from a report like that?!

Now that McDaniels didn’t go to Minnesota and will coach Sam Bradford in St. Louis, maybe now we can let this thing rest.

Yeah, JEEPERS! It’s like you people think something I say is WORTH something!

I think the line I wished I’d written this week comes from Bob Ryan of the Boston Globe: “Lots of candidates to play the lead in ‘The Rex Ryan Story,’ but I’m leaning toward John Goodman.”

Oh, Bob Ryan. Will you never cease to amaze with your well-timed jokes about fat white men and wanting to punch Jason Kidd’s wife? WHAT A CUTUP.

Last week I told you about the insurance claims adjuster in Pittsburgh who prayed to a black-and-white photo of a cigar-chomping Art Rooney on his iPhone when the Steelers were down 21-7.

There’s so much douchery in that little sentence that I can barely react. I just want to just huddle in a corner somewhere and suck on the end of a pillow. This is not the world I wanted.

And this week, Pittsburgh Phil prayed to the man again, and when the game was over, and the Steelers were going to another Super Bowl, he IMed the photo with this caption: “He is what did it.”


See, that’s Pittsburgh.

Oh well, that’s good to know. What’s Pittsburgh? It’s a town full of scrapple-eating chubtards who think praying to a ghost inside their phone helps them win playoff games. Very Pittsburghish.

Saw The King’s Speech. Terrific. Wonderful.


Great lessons.

Make a movie about someone who’s crippled AND make it British, and a SAG award is all but yours!

Emotional for me; more about that in a minute.

That’s a lot of Jujyfruits for someone in the middle of something emotional.

In case you don’t know the story, it’s about Albert, the Duke of York, a heir to the throne in England in the ’30s who stutters terribly, and how he works to try to conquer the problem, and how so many things — pride, badgering father King George IV and brother, nerves –conspire to hold him down for so long.

This column isn’t long enough. Time to bust out the old “recap the plot of a movie” trick!

One more nugget

Want to know the plot to “True Grit”?

Noticed on my Peanut Toffee Buzz Clif Bar…

Holy shit, really? “I’d like a fat person’s coffee in energy bar form, please.”

that it contains green tea and roasted soybeans. Now I feel much better about what I ate all weekend, with that as my nutritional balance.

As well you should.

Coffeenerdness: That Starbucks trenta, the 31-ounce cold-drink size, looks like the Big Gulp. Seems a bit serious. I mean, an iced green tea or whatever is in there is going to keep you up for two days.

Really, it’s downright IRRESPONSIBLE. Think, America. THINK. At a time like this, we all must THINK. These drinks are too large. What kind of message does it send to our children? Much better to have 9 double shots of espresso between 2:37AM and 3:12AM. PORTION CONTROL.

Beernerdness: I’m living in Boston now and this has been the kind of snowy-slushy winter…


(with, ugggghhhh, two months to go in it) that makes you say, “Why exactly are we not living in Tucson right now?”

Because they shoot people in grocery stores there?

/going to Hell

But it’s given me an excuse to get to know Harpoon beer better. And the allspice/hint-of-clove Winter Warmer dark beer can’t be beat.

And Boston has this other beer called… Sam Addams? I think that’s how it’s spelled. Only available here, of course. FANTASTIC. BOSTON IS THE BEER CAPITOL OF BEERVANIA.

Might be hard for you to find, but if you can, it’s worth a swig.

Very hard to find Harpoon. Unless you live within two miles of a gas station anywhere on Earth.


This ain’t for fast swiggin’!

Two terrific nuggets from FOX’s Ken Rosenthal on baseball

Baseball nuggets are the best nuggets of all!

RIP, Jack LaLanne. Thought you would live forever. You lived a life of fitness we should all aspire to.

In other news, eating this Peanut Toffee Buzz Clif Bar is like running a half marathon in your tummy!

At the risk of inviting you to see a self-immolation, I’ll be interviewed by Mary Carillo on HBO’s Real Sports show Tuesday night at 10 Eastern. But the real treat in the piece, if it makes the cut, will be Bailey the golden retriever chasing a tennis ball on a frozen field near our Boston home. That is one good dog.

See the human side of Peter King Tuesday night. The LOFTY side.

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