Sacramento Bee

Thriller became poetry in motion
January 06, 2003
By Marcos Bretón -- Bee Staff Writer

SAN FRANCISCO -- The game was a fable, a fractured fairy tale.

It had heroes and villains and guys meant for jail.

Its stars were named T.O., Garcia and "Mooch."

At the end, all were giddy/ Like a day swilling "hooch."

Their feats were mythic/ A proud Niner day.

Though they knew they were lucky/ It could have gone the other way.

It was a shock to Mr. Shockey/ Lord Fassel was frumpy.

Kerry Collins was bummed/ Jason Sehorn all grumpy.

It was a blow to their dreams/ A long-snapper's lament.

Then they headed for the Apple/ Their spirits all spent.

But across a smelly hallway/ In the winners' locker room.

Was a happy ol' Cedric/ His career nearly ruin'd.

He's really a sub/ A lad from Tennessee.

Who played with reckless abandon/ Like he really couldn't see.

That dude just isn't right/ Admit it, you were thinking.

When he looked in the air and started his blinking.

His fate seemed sealed/ He'd done all it takes.

To go down in history linked to bad breaks.

From anonymous to infamous/ A tale worthy of The Bard.

Cedrick Wilson reaching out/ With hands greased by lard.

Cedrick Wilson/ Game tied/ Until you arrived.

Cedrick Wilson, rally-killer/ Sucks the life from a thriller.

Cedrick Wilson, big boo-boo/ Was it Mooch's Waterloo?

Then came halftime whistle/ What are the Niners to do?

The momentum had swung/ Guys in red really tanked.

The Giants would be winners/ Take that to the bank.

Their lead grew and grew/ The Niners were failing.

This despite T.O's words/ His locker-room wailing.

Twenty-four points down/ The Giants still surging.

It really looked grim/ The fans stopped all their urging.

They headed for the exits/ They jumped in their cars.

They couldn't bear to see it/ Unless drunk and in bars.

But then came a blessing/ Though the road was still daunting.

Jeremy Shockey dropped a touchdown/ Had to stop all his taunting.

New York settled for a field goal/ A partially successful drive.

But they couldn't imagine/ the Niners still alive.

No guts, no glory/ No-huddle offense, too.

Throw the ball to Mr. Owens/ He knows what to do.

A touchdown. A two-point/ A game in the making.

The Giants still haughty/ They hardly were quaking.

The thing about football/ They didn't comprehend.

Is that you never stop driving/ Until the game's end.

The offense stopped working/ The Niners caught a break.

And here came Jeff Garcia/ A hero on the make.

He ran and he darted/ He stirred recollections.

Of Montana and Young/ And champagne-soaked confections.

That magic return/ That Candlestick fever.

And before very long/ There were many believers.

Try as they might/ The Giants strained and sputtered.

And soon forced to punt/ They melted like butter.

At the start of the fourth/ New York had scored in each quarter.

But their scoring had bowed before a new world order.

That final drive/ That sound from the stands.

Had forced the poor Giants to sit on their hands.

And then in an instant/ Tai Streets appeared.

In a sliver of the end zone/ His actions revered.

They railed and tussled/ Giants fighting in vain.

And getting lost in emotion/ Niner Karma like rain.

Still they drove and completed/ Passes cutting like knives.

There was still lots of tension/ Fans hiding their eyes.

Then came a pure moment/ Time standing still.

It was still in the cards/ Giants poised for the kill.

They should have made it/ 41 yards isn't far.

But the ball never got there/ As if painted with tar.

Alas poor Trey Junkin/ His snap weighted by age.

By rust and retirement/ Maybe should have stayed away.

And then it ended/ The Niners had won.

A game for the ages/ A miraculous run.

They are now bound for Tampa/ Their eyes filled with tears.

While their fans screamed and hollered/ And cracked many beers.

Mooch was saved and relieved/ He would coach his own way.

He would look for more glory in the wilds of Tampa Bay.

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