Rooting guide for non-playoff fans

Chicago: The rival Packers are out, obviously. The Broncos only remind you of Jay Cutler's shortcomings. Indianapolis is too close. The 49ers and Seahawks are too far away. The Saints play indoors. San Diego? Carolina? Too warm. New England? Too successful. Bengals? Too orange. The Chiefs? Too boring. Your team is PHILADELPHIA. Why? Hardcore sports town, like you, with an innovative, offensive-minded head coach and, more importantly, someone outside of Philly has to root for the Eagles or else I will get angry tweets for the next week, ah-hem, that's why.

Dallas: You want SAN FRANCISCO to pass Dallas by winning its sixth Lombardi Trophy in the hopes that watching this unfold will be enough to convince Jerry Jones to finally fire his lousy GM. If it seems like I say this every year, it's probably because I do.

Detroit: Lions fans need a miracle, and I think I've found it. With your support, the NEW ENGLAND Patriots will win their fourth Super Bowl (and first since the Spygate scandal, nudge-nudge ...), and afterward a bored and unsatisfied Bill Belichick, seeking new and greater challenges, will quit the Patriots to take over the hapless Lions.

Minnesota: You guys love quarterbacks, maybe too much. There's Matt Cassel, Christian Ponder and even Josh Freeman. Your defense (ranked 31st against the pass) barely even puts up a fight against opposing QBs. And is it me or, 50 years later, does Fran Tarkenton seem to weigh in on every breaking news item in Minnesota? For a fan base this obsessed with quarterbacks, there's only one team for you: the Peyton Manning-led DENVER Broncos.

New York Giants: Do you want fun, wild fans to invade your city for Super Bowl XLVIII? Then root hard for NEW ORLEANS.

St. Louis: Jeff Fisher has the best mustache in the NFL. Kurt Warner has been known to rock a 'stache now and again. Aaron Rodgers has the worst facial hair in all of sports. You are now all GREEN BAY fans. Give me a break, you know how hard it is to find a connection between this team and the playoffs?

Tampa Bay: Honestly, you poor people have suffered enough. You've paid your dues. Go ahead and give yourself a break this postseason and become trash-talking, front-runner fans of SEATTLE. You've earned it. Just think of yourselves the same way the rest of us without a team approach our duties as surrogate fans in the playoffs: as the 13th Man.

Washington: Your franchise is, yet again, in total disarray. But, guess what? You beat the Chargers! When in doubt, do what Ron Burgundy does and cling to that tiny morsel of hope called SAN DIEGO like your life depended on it.

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