The Paw Print
The Paw Print
With all of the ups and downs this NFL season, it was definitely a year to remember. From scandals to comebacks, this year held it all. Let’s take a moment to look back at all of good and not-so-good memories from the 2012-13 season.
Saints Bounty Scandal: Before the season even started, fans were rocked by the unfolding of an investigation against the New Orleans Saints. Several players from New Orleans allegedly were paying bonuses or bounties for in-game performances. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell suspended Saints head coach Sean Payton for the entire 2012-13 season and defensive coordinator Gregg Williams indefinitely. Four players, including linebacker Jonathan Vilma, were also suspended. The Saints organization was also fined and forced to forfeit draft selections.
Replacement Referees: With the NFL referees on strike, the league was forced to find an alternative. Unfortunately, the replacement officials made some questionable calls in their three weeks on the gridiron, leaving football fans in outrage.
Simultaneous Catch: This ruling finally saw the end of the replacement refs. When Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson threw the ball deep on the final play from scrimmage in a Monday night game between Seattle and Green Bay, madness ensued. Players from both teams went up for the pass and when the play ended, possession was uncertain. The question: Was it a catch or an interception? Did the Seahawks catch the ball or the Packers? One referee signaled an interception and another signaled a touchdown. Because of the simultaneous catch rule, the touchdown stood and the Seahawks beat the Packers.
The Jets: It was an rough season in New York. The team brought in Tim Tebow during the offseason with the hope of creating a threat for opposing defenses. However, Tebow saw minimal time on the field, even with Mark Sanchez’s poor performances throughout the season. There was a lot of tension in the Jets organization.
Chuck Pagano: Pagano, the head coach of the Indianapolis Colts, was diagnosed with leukemia in September and took a three month leave from the team in order to get treatment. Several players and even a couple cheerleaders shaved their head to show their support for their coach. The movement to support Pagano was dubbed “CHUCKSTRONG”. While Pagano was gone, the team was led by offensive coordinator Bruce Arians. Pagano returned to the team in late December.
Adrian Peterson: After damaging his ACL and MCL at the end of the 2011-12 season, Adrian Peterson made a miraculous return to the gridiron at the start of the season. Peterson racked up 2,097 rushing yards in the regular season, falling only nine yards short of the single season all-time record set by Eric Dickerson. He was named league MVP at the end of the season.
Peyton Manning: After missing a year with a neck injury, Peyton Manning also had a comeback year. After a thorough decision process, Manning became the starting quarterback for the Denver Broncos. He led the Broncos to an AFC West Division title, but was unable to take down the Ravens in the postseason.
Super Bowl XLVII: Dubbed the “Harbaugh Bowl”, this year’s big game featured John and Jim Harbaugh and the Ravens and 49ers. The game looked like it was going to be a blowout in favor of the Ravens until a 30 minute power outage early in the 3rd quarter shifted the momentum. In the end, the Ravens still came out on top, 34-31.
All in all, it was an entertaining season in the NFL.