Some of you may remember this feature from last year. If you do, kudos -- you are one of six. I was looking forward to resurrecting it this year because it was a long, painful off-season, and I wanted to enjoy football again. Sundays should be joyful. They should be fun.
Unfortunately, Sunday's Broncos-Bills game was anything but.
I'll admit I was geared up. Aside from a day in late March or early April, optimism abounds best in early September, when 53 men -- dressed somewhere between Mad Max and American Gladiator -- take the field in stupendous, combat-ridden euphoria, ready to do battle for their fans.
I, like many, were ready.
The facts of the day are this: Denver escaped with a 15-14 win over Buffalo after converting two fourth downs on the final drive, the field goal unit scrambling onto the field with scant seconds remaining just in time for Jason Elam to hit a 42-yard game-winner after missing two earlier in the game.
It was a thrilling finish, one that literally caused me to fall out of my seat, onto the ground. But the happiness was short-lived.
On the kickoff to open the second half, backup tight end Kevin Everett barreled down upon Bronco return man Domenik Hixon, taking him down with a helmet-to-helmet blow.
Everett did not get up.
Amid tons of boisterous Vikings fans, enjoying their lead over the Falcons, I sat quietly. I watched the replay and cringed. Everett attempted to make the tackle -- to do his job -- and fell with a "THUD" to the Earth. I knew it was bad immediately.
He may make a lot more than I do, but I do not stroll towards my computer in the morning thinking, "You know, I may never walk again." It just doesn't happen.
It was a great opening Sunday. There's no denying that. Just remember that for some, it could've been their last.
The Pretzel Factory would like to extend the heartiest of wishes to Kevin Everett and his family. Good luck on the long road ahead.