I am clearly out of my NFL playoff bracket. My NFC pick, Da Bears, are still alive and well, but going 1-3 in the opeing round and the Patriots losing did me in. However, I did pick the Steelers at the beginning of the season…so that kind of counts. Nevertheless The Rabbino goes on. Today we look at the Top 10 Jewish connections left in the NFL playoffs.
10) Jewish Summer Camps - There are several reasons to LOVE this upcoming weekend’s Bears/Packers game. One of those reasons is the connection of Chicago to Wisconsin. Close in proximity, Jewish Chicago Teenagers flock to Wisconsin for summer camp. Camp Chi, OSRUI, and of course Camp Ramah are just a few. If this is any indication of who will win, very few Wisconsonites come South to Chitown for the summer. So if you view it that way, the Pack will win.
9) Super Bowl Home - Many Cowboys fans actually thought they were going to play the Super Bowl at home this year. Ha. But the Cowboys had two Jewish players (maybe the 2 best) in Igor Olshanky and Kyle Kosier. I am sure they will get nice seats.
8) 2009 Jets Dilemma - In 2009 the first two home games of the season for the Jets were planned on Rosh Hashanna and Yom Kippur. Jewish Jets fans did not take a liking to this. There was plenty of kvetching. It got plenty of press. Click HERE for ESPN’s coverage. For Jimmy Kimmel’s coverage see below.
7) Former Players - There have not been too many former players on any of these three teams. Sid Luckman (who we will discuss later), Alan Veingrad (who we will also discuss later), Antonio Garay (former Bear, still active), and a few others. Wish there were more here but our luck ran out with the Patriots.
6) J-E-T-S/J-E-W-S - It is no secret that NY is home to many Jews, including me. So Jets fans, this shirt deserves some attention for your upcoming AFC championship party. Check it out HERE. If the Jets players wore these, maybe they would have a little luck beating Big Ben and the Steelers.
5) Half Time Show - We are all thinking it. Will the Black Eyed Peas sing “I Gotta Feeling?” If so, everyone will be screaming Mazel Tov! LeChaim!
4) Big Ben - Roethlisberger sounds Jewish…but he ain’t even close. But Squirrel Hill Pittsburgh is very Jewish. Ever been to Pittsburgh on a game day? It’s like Monsey on Shabbos. Everyone at “Temple,” streets empty, and praying to God(s) of the Steelers.
3) Commercials - Plenty of people watch the Super Bowl for 1 reason, the commercials…just ask my wife. Plenty of Jews pop up from time to time. Like this cameo below of Andy Samberg. Not sure how this will help anyone pick a winner, but come on everyone loves the commercials.
2) Chabad - Chabad is seemingly everywhere. Literally, they pop up wherever there are Jews. The Super Bowl is no different. Former NFLer Alan “Shlomo” Veingrad went from the NFL to the Chabad house. He made his mark with the Packers but won his Super Bowl ring with the Cowboys. No doubt the Chabad movement will/should use their own to promote Super Bowl Sunday. To read more on Veingrad click HERE.
1) 1941 - The Bears and Packers have not met in the playoffs since 1941. It was then that the Bears got the best of the Packers. And none of then Sid Luckman led the way. The greatest Jewish NFL player of all time. This upcoming weekend there will be video highlights and mentioning of Luckman all over the place. Relish in it. Hopefully, the Bears beat the Packers once again.
And for my new picks. Bears over Steelers in the Super Bowl. Bear Down.
And Let Us Say…Amen.
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