HILL: A psychic look at championship weekend

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Randy Hill

Veteran columnist Randy Hill is a frequent contributor to FOXSports.com.
Our regularly scheduled Subway commercial will not be seen, so that we may bring you this special presentation of the Psychic Trash Talk Friends. (Editor¿s note: According to sources near the chip rack, Jared¿s sandwich-peddling swagger got out of hand when he ordered a Subway cookie.) The Baltimore Ravens are sponsoring today¿s show, eliminating the need for a touchdown-tone phone if you choose to call in. Anyway, for the wisdom of Ravens coach Brian Billick, dial one. Thank you. Coach Billick currently is on the set of his upcoming HBO series Mensa Behaving Badly, and unavailable to take your call. I will be standing in as The Brian King¿s understudy, and am prepared to unleash my psychic powers on this weekend¿s NFL conference championship games. If you¿re seeking gambling advice, you¿ve come to the wrong place, brother. Before someone explained it to me, I thought ¿vigorish¿ was a Red Vine soaked in ginseng. But the road to the Super Bowl is treacherous, and I¿m supplying low-mileage, pregame karma. For example, I can tell you that Jerome Bettis will carry the ball for Pittsburgh in the Steelers¿ clash with the New England Patriots. But his return from inactivity still won¿t occur smoothly. After last Sunday¿s medical disaster, ¿The Bus¿ will limit his pharmaceutical preparation to aspirin. However, lacking the reservoir of spit enjoyed by Steelers coach Bill Cowher, the aspirin becomes lodged in Jerome¿s throat. Fortunately, the team physician saves the day by shooting up Bettis with a saliva-producing compound. The Bus eventually rolls against New England, and the doctor¿s performance goes down in Pittsburgh history as ¿The Immaculate Injection.¿
  • In their NFC final date at St. Louis, the Philadelphia Eagles attempt to establish the run with Duce Staley. Sure, Donovan McNabb pitched the Eagles past the Bears in Chicago, but Philly will stay ground-bound in order to keep the ball away from Rams cornerback Aeneas Williams.
  • As a form of non-violent protest against NFL officiating practices, Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban will spend 47 minutes managing an A&W.
  • Campbell¿s, which recognizes an m-m-m-m good marketing opportunity when it sees one, will buy ad time for a commercial starring this week¿s NFC title game quarterbacks. With McNabb starting against the Rams¿ Kurt Warner, this spot refers to Sunday¿s showdown as the Chunky Soup-er Bowl.
  • Speaking of chunky, former Ravens defensive tackle Tony Siragusa will decide his new acting career doesn¿t need HBO or The Sopranos. So, following the advice of the Steelers¿ offensive line, Tony will write, produce and star in his own cable series. Its working title is The Fatso-pranos.
  • A weather prediction for the AFC party in Pittsburgh is beyond my purview, but I do have Sunday¿s forecast for the face of St. Louis Rams owner Georgia Frontiere: Two inches of packed powder.
  • The Patriots may have the only defensive backfield that¿s truly out for justice. One cornerback is named Ty Law. One safety is named Lawyer Milloy. New England doesn¿t have them on retainer, but they still take a cap hit. To combat their legal predicament, the Steelers will unveil a special gimmick play against the Pats: They¿ll call it the Plea-Flicker.
  • In tribute to Mr. Smith, the St. Louis defensive coordinator, one St. Louis fan will produce a sign that reads: ¿St. Louis, the City of Brotherly Lovie.¿
  • Rams head coach Mike Martz will sustain a hernia while attempting to lift his play book without a spotter.
  • Rams players attempt to celebrate a victory over the Eagles by soaking their coach with the contents of a water bucket, but Martz insists on pouring it on himself.
  • In a cheesy attempt to capitalize on its current notoriety, the NFL rule book will be reviewed on Oprah.
  • The Rams will be installed as 7½-point favorites by Oprah¿s Bookie Club.
  • After careful review of tape from their season-opening, near-miss against St. Louis, Eagles coaches will decide to blitz on offense, too.
  • Philly offensive tackle Jon Runyan will establish a record for late hits. The previous record for late hits belonged to Byung-Hyun Kim of the Arizona Diamondbacks.
  • With little alternative to its seemingly limited programming, CBS turns video of Tom Brady¿s non-fumble ¿ and a subsequent rule-book application -- into its own series. CBS will market this new show by deploying inconspicuous signs around Heinz Field. The signs read The Tuck Is Coming.
  • CBS also rises to the reality-based game show challenge by creating a series called The Booth. The first contestant on Vol. 1 is Oakland Raiders managing general swing your partner Al Davis. After having to pay a personal seat license to sit in The Booth, Al loses valuable points by insisting that Tom is the Brady responsible for the Wesson-ality of Florence Henderson. Also appearing on the premier episode is Raiders coach Jon Gruden. Gruden, whose wardrobe is limited to a sun visor and Tampa Bay Buccaneer logo boxer shorts, refuses to answer any questions. But he does respond to The Booth¿s ice-storm torture by giggling and hollering ¿Hit me again!¿
  • In a development possibly related to his inability to snag a Subway contract extension, Jared dumps Henry, Clay Henry and is seen dining at Quizno¿s with Leigh Steinberg.
  • Tagged: Bears, Raiders, Rams, Patriots, Eagles, Ravens, Steelers, Kurt Warner, Tom Brady, Lawyer Milloy, Ty Law, Donovan McNabb, Jon Runyan, Duce Staley, Jerome Bettis

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