over at home for Carolina for 56 minutes, and then Quincy Carter threw touchdown passes to Joey Galloway and Antonio Bryant to turn a 13-0 lump into a 14-13 leap.
Nor did I believe in Week Two of this season, except that night I didn't believe you could lose a 13-0 lead and a football game you'd dominated so much for long. Now I believe that.
And now we should all believe that at least it's possible, even if your team hasn't done a thing all night. It seemed that once upon a time, in a galaxy far, far away, if you had a 13-point lead and the ball with four minutes to play, you were winning that game if you were any good at all.
Even three years ago, that Quincy Carter-Carolina game seemed like an aberration. But watch the games. Last week has nothing to do with this week, and anything's possible, even if it hasn't happened all day.
Why is this so? There's no one answer. Partly a thinning of talent as fallout from the salary cap that puts more average players on the field for every team. Partly more sophisticated schemes. Partly expansion. Partly because when the moon is in the seventh house and Jupiter's aligned with Mars, then peace will guide the planets and love will steer the stars. Deal with it.
The choice we can make is that the upshot of it all is a more entertaining NFL product than we've ever had. Is the football better than ever? No. But almost every game is going to the wire. We must redefine a big lead, or deficit. As my radio partner, Babe Laufenberg, reminds me every week, there's a way to win every one of these games. Or lose it.
So I promise to try to believe every week forevermore that anything can happen.
By the way, the Tooth Fairy would like you to call.