Archive for the ‘football’ Category

Sunday Football

April 9, 2013

There is a young man at church who did not think that John could play football well. So, about 3 months ago John said, “Why don’t we play a game and then you can see.” They set the date for the first Sunday in April. Hearing about football every day around here is nothing new. However, the week before there seemed to be a lot more of that talk. Also, we got wind of a “secret weapon” that the other captain was planning. It was said that he was going to bring in a high ranked state high school player. Well, that didn’t seem to fair to us, but someone mentioned another young man who used to go to our church who now happened to be 6 foot 4 and a good athlete.

Prior to that, John was really training hard. Everyday he was out running up and down our very steep hill in the back. He was practicing throwing and catching whenever he could. He was bound and determined to win, even though he knew that most of the boys he was planning on picking didn’t play much football and he was much smaller than the other young man. He thought out strategies and watched film clips of plays on YouTube. He was prepared. (Photo’s by S. C. Thank you!)

IMG_6895 (During the picking of the teams)

The first Sunday in April arrived. First thing in the morning the boys were out practicing. Then they showered and prepared for Mass. They were all serving, which is an honor in itself. Then after Mass, we got ready to head to the park. The weather was gorgeous! You could not ask for a better day.

IMG_6909(Kick off!)

Several dads were officiating. Father joined in the first half on the other side. The other captain offered John the first pick in color of the flags, blue or yellow the week prior (it was flag football.) John chose blue for our Blessed Mother. After picking teams, and just before the opening kickoff, the blue team was nearly penalized when someone yelled, “We prayed to Our Lady of Victory for us and to Our Lady of Sorrows for you!” (Personally I thought that was rather funny!)

IMG_6916(Kevin making a catch and escaping the “secret weapon.”)


IMG_6943(Father throwing the ball)

IMG_6921 (John’s foot up in the air after a kick)

IMG_6966 (In almost every picture, John had a smile on his face.  He does love his football.)

At halftime the blue team was up by a touchdown (35-28 for the Blue).   If I remember correctly, sometime during the second half the yellow team was in the lead and then there was a tie.  (Edited to add:  I was not correct.  The blue team never fell behind, only tied or was ahead.)   Then the ball was intercepted by the blue team and then another touchdown. Someone ran over to us and yelled, “It’s over. The Blue team won!!” Yes, I was excited! It certainly looked as if everyone had a great time. And, thank God, no one was hurt.  Final Score was 63 – 49!!!

IMG_7042  (Victory jumps!  I think John was a little excited!)


IMG_7065 (Victory hugs.)

IMG_7116 (PB and his drums)

After the game, PB brought out his drum set and started playing. JB brought out his puppet and Kevin helped him to operate it. MaryEllen thought she lost my camera and everyone there started looking all over for it.  After about 15 minutes or so, she found it in her purse. I told her St. Anthony would find it and he did! After the game at the park, we went to a friend’s house and had a nice little party with a campfire. It was the perfect ending to a wonderful day.


February 20, 2012

John & Philip Rivers 1

John has waiting a long time to meet…(who is that blurry man?)

San Diego Quarter back Philip Rivers.

Last night Joe and John went to hear both Philip Rivers and Deacon Alex Jones speak at a men’s conference.  (Doesn’t John look small there?  He’s actaully taller than me!)  Both John and Joe said that the speakers were excellent.  After the speaking engagement, they hung around to see if they could meet Mr. Rivers.  John didn’t want to “bother” him, so Joe went and asked to get a picture.

As parents, we would like to thank Philip Rivers for being such a wonderful role model, not only football player, but Catholic husband and father.

John’s Super Bowl XLVI Preview

February 2, 2012

Once again we have John’s expert preview of the Superbowl this year, 2012.  Although he doesn’t have much interest in this one (doesn’t care for either team), he’s on the ball with his commentary.

**Edited to add… I have nothing to do with the ads below.   As a matter of fact, I didn’t even know they were there until we looked at the post on Joe’s computer.

Without further adieu….

Super Bowl XLVI Preview

by John Vogel

This year, I must admit, we have a great match up.  Super Bowl XLVI features the New England Patriots, best team in the AFC, facing the red hot New York Giants, supposedly the worst team in the NFC to enter the playoffs this season.

The Patriots (15-3) defeated Tim Tebow and this “Orange crush,” 45-10, and then the Baltimore Ravens, 23-20, in the AFC Championship.  Tom Brady was one of the two quarterbacks to defeat Dan Marino’s 27 year old record for the most passing yards in a season as he tossed for 5235 yards and a 2nd career best 39 touchdowns.  (His career best is an NFL record of 50 scores.)  The Patriots have a reliable running back, BenJarvus Green-Ellis, who in the past 3 years, has not fumbled in his NFL career.  Wide receiver Wes Welker lead the NFL with an astonishing 122 catches.  (The record is 143, held by Marvis Harrison, an ex-Indianapolis Colt.)  Welker also had his 4th career 100 reception season (tying an NFL record held by Harrison.)  Welker also took those catches and gained an AFC 2011 best 1569 yards.  (The NFL record is 1848, held by ex-49er Jerry Rice.)  As if that is not enough, the Patriots have 2nd year tight end Rob Gronkowski who caught 90 passes for 1327 yards, and an astonishing 17 touchdowns (4th best in NFL history, best for a tight end.)  Super Bowl XXXIX MVP Deion Branch returns to the team after being a clutch receiver in Seatle.  The defense though, is not impressive.  It allowed 323 points this year, 10 more than last year.  The net difference, although (thanks to the offense) is 193 points, which means the offense scored 513 points (all this does not include the playoffs.)  Earlier this season, remember that the Giants did beat the Patriots 23-20.

As for the Giants, Eli Manning, brother of Peyton, has proved his boast correct:  He is an elite NFL quarterback.  Manning himself threw for 4933 yards and 29 touchdowns during the regular season, and found himself a new favorite target; second year free agent wide receiver Victor Cruz.  Cruz made 82  catches for 1536 yards, an NFL 3rd best and a league high 18.7 yards per reception.  Another fact is this guy wasn’t drafted.  Hakeem Nicks racked up 1143 yards receiving this year as well, so this passing attack is talented.  The running game flopped in the regular season, but running backs Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs have renewed their attacks and combined for over 400 yards in the past three games.  But the real strength of this team lies in the defense.  Defencive linemen Justin Tuck, Jason Pierre-Paul and Osi Unameria have been incredible.  They have combined for 32 sacks, Jason on top with 18 of them and 80+ tackles.  The linebackers were better than average, and the secondary intercepted a second NFC best 20 passes.

I expect Tom Brady to struggle through the first quarter, but get an idea of the defensive schemes, and attack all through the second half.

The Score

New England      20

New York            23

The MVP:  Quarterback Eli Manning, 300+ yards

Please leave your predictions and comments below!  Thank you!

Super Bowl Preview by John 2011 Edition

February 5, 2011

My apologies to John as this is very late.  He had it done last week and I am just getting around to typing it in now.  Please feel free to leave a comment as he would love to hear from you.

Super Bowl Preview by John

This preview is about me analyzing the Super Bowl teams, the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Green Bay Packers.  Today I am going to start with the Steelers.

The Pittsburgh Steelers

The Steelers enter their 8th Super Bowl, their 2nd under head coach Mike Tomlin.  “Big” Ben Rothlisburger enters his 3rd Super Bowl, hoping this time he will get the MVP.  In 2007, Super Bowl XLI, the Steelers defeated the Seattle Seahawks 21-10, WR Hines Ward getting the MVP.  In Super Bowl XLIII, WR Santonio Holmes received the MVP for his 7 catches for 133 yards and game winning touchdown.

For “Big Ben,” he started the season suspended for the first 5 games, but came back to average 266.7 yards a game with 3200 yards.  his 97.0 passer rating finished 3rd in the AFC and 5th in the NFL. 

As for key player Rashard Mendenhall, he ran for -tying 2nd place in rushing touchdowns- 13 scores and ran for a 27 carry, 121 yard performance last week against the Jets, that earned him the game ball for that game.  (NOTE -To have a game ball means that the person was the MVP for that game.)

We cannot forget the unbelievable Pittsburgh defence, led by James Harrison, LaMarr Woodley, James Farriar, and Troy Polamalu.  Lawrence Timmons lead the team this season with 135 tackles, LaMarr Woodley tied the team with James Harrison in sacks with 10.5 and Troy Polamalu finished 2nd in the NFL with 7 interceptions.  Shaun Suisham is disappointed  with himself for a longest field goal of 48 yards.  

And last, but not least, is Mike Wallace, the new wide receiver.  Mike averages 21 yards per catch, caught a league leading 26 passes over 20 yards, 10 of those, another league leading, for over 40 yards.   80% of his 60 catches went for first downs. 

Green Bay Packers

Lead by quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who for the 3rd straight season threw for over 3900 yards.  Green Bay has been bowl hungry, being the worst team (besides the Seattle Seahawks) to enter the playoffs at the #6 seed.  They became the first NFC #6 seed to reach the Super Bowl.

Rodgers, who leads the 13 quarterbacks in the playoffs with over 800 yards passing, now hopes to gain his first Super Bowl win, and the Packers first win since 1996, when led by Brett Favre.

The running game has been hurt since day one when running back Ryan Grant went down in the first week with an injury.  Since then, Green Bay has mainly used Brandon Jackson, who is unreliable when a first down is needed, only converting on 14.2% of his runs.

During the playoffs, the Packers have put their trust in rookie running back James Starks, who only played in 3 games.  He has fulfilled hopes, running for 100 yards in 2 games, on at Philadelphia and another at Atlanta.  Watch for James to break loose a few plays during Super Bowl VL. 

Green Bay’s receiving team is lead by Greg Jennings and Donald Driver, catching a combined 20 touchdowns in the regular season.  Green Bay has had some trouble holding on to the ball, fumbling 16  times, losing 8 of them. 

Green Bay’s defence, lead by A.J. Hawk, Charles Woodston, and Nick Collins, have swarmed the running game.  Watch for this top talent defense stop the running game and blitz Ben Roethlisburger a lot.


The final score:

Green Bay —-  17
Pittsburgh —  24

Passing leader – Aaron Rodgers
Rushing leader – Rashard Mendenhall
Receiving leader – Greg Jennings or Mike Wallace


That’s what I think.  Feel free to leave comments or predictions on the comments link below.  I would really like to hear your predictions.  Thanks for reading!

Playoffs Today…

January 18, 2009

John still loves NFL Football.  Since the playoff are today, I asked for predictions.  I’ll put the short ones first and leave John’s commentary for the end.  Please leave a comment, as John loves to hear your opinions and predictions.


Philadelphia Eagles – 26
Arizona Cardinals – 30

Baltimore Ravens – 17
Pittsburgh Steelers – 28


Philadelphia Eagles – 24
Arizona Cardinals – 21

Baltimore Ravens – 33
Pittsburgh Steelers – 14


Doesn’t really care, except I hope Pittsburgh wins!

John’s Commentary…


————————Players to Watch—————————

On the Eagles, QB Donovan McNabb has been dynamite during the playoffs, and threw 300 yards while playing the Giants last week.   McNabb’s strategy is to throw screen passes to two players, Brian Westbrook, the Eagles’ leading receiver, and Corral Buckholder.  McNabb’s best target when going deep is DeSean Jackson  – the team’s big punt returner – who ran 108 yards vs. Minnesota two weeks ago.  He leads the Eagles’ receiving yards.

On the Cardinals side, watch WR Larry Fitzgerald.  Larry led the NFC in catches and the team in yards.  QB Kurt Warner had his favorite target set (Fitzgerald), and last week finished the game with 8 catches for 166 yards.  Another player to watch will be CB Domanque Rodgers Cromartie.  The rookie CB never played football in high school or college.  He walked onto a team in the Senior Bowl and intercepted 3 passes…that got the Cardinal’s attention.  Domanque led the team with 4 interceptions and has 2 interceptions in the playoffs.

—————————–My Prediction————————

I think Philadelphia has the upper hand with defense, offense, and returns.  Arizona is good with return coverage and will probably do a good job stopping DeSean Jackson and Quintin Demps.  I think Philly’s got it, 23-21.

—————————-My Hopes——————————

I really hope Arizona loses confidence early and loses 52-0.  I know it won’t happen, but I have to say I’m an Eagles fan.


—————————————Players to Watch————————————

On Pittsburgh there is RB Wallie Parker.  Willie ran 147 yards last week and ran two touchdowns.  Willie was injured early in the season and missed most of it.  Also, there’s LB James Harrison, who led the AFC in sacks (15).  Harrison has been a hard hitter this season with his bone-braking hits.  One more player to watch is Troy Polamalu.  (Go on to look at Troy’s interceptions and don’t miss his plays on video!)  Troy tied for 2nd in the NFL for interceptions (7) and made some of the biggest plays of the year. 

On the Baltimore side, Ed Reed is the big threat on the Raven’s defense.  Ed lead the NFL in interceptions (9) and has intercepted 3 during this post season.  Ed holds the NFL record for the longest interception.  He ran a 108 yard interception for a touch down, where he broke his own record of 107 yards set back in 2004.

————————-My Hopes and Predictions——————————

My hope is a Pittsburgh win 33-30 OT.  But knowing the Ravens defense, my hopes are demolished.  I think Baltimore’s got it 24-17 due to Ben Roethlisberger’sbad throws this season against strong defenses.

——————-My Super Bowl Prediction—————————-

(For now, anyway!)  Baltimore and Philadelphia match up and Philadelphia barely pulls it out of a last minute field goal, 24-23.


There you have it…straight from our own personal sports announcer, John.

Manning and the Colts are Super Bowl Champions!

February 5, 2007

by John Vogel

The Dolphins Stadium, February 4th, 2007

The Colts win a  victory at Dolphans Stadium in Miami Florida, 29-17

The First Quarter

On the first play of the game, the kickoff, Chicago got a 92 yard touchdown run.  The extra point by Robbie Gold was good.  On 3rd and 13, Peyton Manning threw to Marvin Harrison but was intercepted by Cris Harris.  Nick Harper was injured during the first quarter.   LB Gary Bracet had a good first quarter, having 2 tackles and holding the Bears with 3 first downs.  With 6:58 remaining, Peyton Manning threw 53 yards to Reggie Wayne.  TOUCHDOWN!  Adam Vinatiery had a bad snap during the the extra point, so he went for the 2 point conversion.  He started to run but was tackled.  Mushan Muhammad caught a 4 yard touchdown.  The extra point was good.

The Second Quarter

The Colts had the ball at the end of the first quarter so they got to keep the ball.  The rain was pouring down so the ball and uniforms were soaking wet.  At the end of the drive for the Colts, Adam Vinateiry kicked a field goal to put the score 14-9.  The Bears punted on their next drive.   At 9:57 left in the first half,  the Colts started another drive and scored a TOUCHDOWN when Dominic Rhodes went to the endzone.  The extra point was good, to put the score 16-14.   A couple of drives later, Peyton Manning  threw to his least favorite target and the receiver fumbled!  Chicago recovered the ball.  During the next play, Chicago funbled and the Colts recovered!  On the last play of the first half Adam Vinatiery missed a 36 yard field goal when the ball went wide left.

The Third Quarter

The Colts got the ball.  They had the ball for 7 minutes and 26 seconds.  The drive ended with Adam Vinatiery’s 24 yard field goal to put the score 19-14.  The Bears punted again and the Colts got the ball.  Adam Vinatiery kicked a 20 yard field goal to put the score 22-17.  The Colts had 7 first downs, the Bears had 2.

The Fourth Quarter

The Colts continued their dirve and Marvin Harrison was injured, but his return was probable.  The Colts punted and the Bears got the ball.  Rex Grossman threw to Mushan Muhammad and was intercepted by Kelvin Haden.  He ran 56 yards.  TOUCHDOWN!  The Bears called a challenge and the Colts won that challenge.  Kelvin Haden had his first career inerception.  Rex Grossman intercepted one more time.  The Colts won in the last seconds.


Peyton Manning won the most valuable player of the game.   He had 25 completions out of 38 attemps  for 247 yards, one touchdown, and one interception.   RB Dominic Rhodes had 21 attemps for 113 yards.

Team Statistics

Colts                  Bears
24                       11                       First Downs
2-3                     2-2                     Extra points Made – Attempts
3-4                     1-1                     Field Goals Made – Attempts
0                         0                         Safteies
42-191-1         19-111-0          Rushes – Yards – Touchdowns
38:04               21:56                Time of Possession
11                       5                         Kicker Points
225                   147                    Return Yards
89                      138                    Kickoff Return Yards
92                      6                         Interception Yards
42                      3                         Punt Return Yards
662                  413                     Total Yards
3                        5                         Turnovers
12-4                 13-3                   Team Record

Super Bowl Preview

February 1, 2007

Super Bowl Preview by John Vogel

Colts offense:

This Super Bowl coming “Super Bowl XLI” (41), QB Peyton Manning has a perfect passing attack.  WR Marvin Harison has great receiving arms and  rookie Joseph Addie has a great rushing game.  At halftime against New England, losing 21-6, Peyton’s passing attack helped them win 38-34.  Peyton was great in the game, showing off his talent.  Peyton is the first in the Manning family to go to the Super Bowl.

Bears Offense:

That’s right.  QB Rex Grossman has lots of talent.  WR Mushan Mummanad has a lot of receiving talent.  Thomas Jones has a lot of rushing yards and gets long gains.

Bears Defense:

The Bears know who they’re coming to, The Colts.  The Bear’s defense against New Orleans  stopped Drew Brees passing attacks by intercepting 3 passes, and showing they were there to play.  Starring Nathan Vasher, start CB, has lots of things to show.  Ricky Manning, Jr. has a CB arm.  Brian Urchler has over 700 tackles, including 5 seasons with over 100 tackles.

Colts Defense:

The Colts can show off now.   LB Cato June gets a lot of the showoffs.  In 2005, he had 5 interceptions, and in 2006, 3 interceptions.  Gary Bracket has lots of the attention too.  As a LB in the last 2 years, he’s had 6 interceptions.  Nick Harper, the great CB, has had 6 interceptions in the past 2 years.

The Kickers:

Colts’ kicker Adam Vantary was with the Patriots in their Super Bowl wins.  Bears’ kicker Robbie Gold can’t kick 100 points in a season.

When & Where:

At Dolphins Stadium, Miami, Florida

Starts at 4:30 pm Eastern time.  Kickoff at 6:00 pm Eastern time.


Colts 32

Bears 29

What are YOUR predictions?  Please leave them in the comments section.  Thanks!