To summarize, here is a breakdown of the linked articles by most featured team:
Chicago Bears (4) (plus a lead photograph depicting the overwhelming tristesse of Jay Cutler)
New York Jets (2.5)
Green Bay Packers (2)
New England Patriots (1.5)
Cincinnati Motherforgetting Bengals (1)
Johnny Depp as a Cartoon Lizard (1)
Deploying the fourth-grade math at our collective disposal, this means that the losers of last weekend's conference championship games somehow generated more than three times the stories as the winners did. Also, apparently the Pittsburgh Steelers franchise has been contracted by the league. We'd have thought that story would merit a mention, but perhaps ESPN is just saving it for the third hour of Cold Pizza.
Those inclined to be pro-mass-media (which at this point consists of about 20% of the people actually working in the mass media, and a slightly larger percentage of those people's mothers) can spin this as a positive thing: the media is holding off on saturation coverage of the Super Bowl participants until we get closer to the day.
But surely there must be something to say about these teams that trumps speculation surrounding the future of the (unfortunately) second-greatest Heisman QB of the last 25 years. Here, we'll get things started: can someone write something informative and revealing about Mike Tomlin, who has conquered more of his chosen world at a younger age than anyone since Alexander the Great (who, like Tomlin, had trouble beating patriots)?
Listen, no one is more grateful than we are that the hype has started off soft. Our teeth are pre-gritted for all the Ben Roethlisberger-is-great-because-he-no-longer-rapes-(as-much) stories. But whether the media is ignoriong the game by focusing on drivel like that, or ignoring the game by simply IGNORING THE GAME, it's still going down the wrong track. Still, though, we'll be kind and give today's espn.com front page a 5 on the meme scale, because we're expecting the deluge any second now.