Rapids Nearing A Photo Finish

Bye weeks have not been kind to Colorado this season. Will that trend continue? Or can Colorado find a way to fire out of the blocks?
by Greg Moss   |   Friday, October 04, 2013

Mile High Club – column on Colorado Rapids & the Denver area and Colorado soccer scenes.

Have you ever found yourself in a ravine at the bottom of a canyon? Looking up, all you can see is sky through the break in the cliff faces. Looking around, all you can see is rock.

Surrounded by only your fears and cold earth, the realization is that it could take some time to escape from the hallway of boulders, if at all. It’s a feeling of helplessness that sets in as you ponder your options.

You could try to climb the sheer face of the cliff, and even if you do miraculously succeed, it would take you some time to reach the heavens above. Or, you could choose one of two paths and search for a better route. Either way, time is the bottom denominator. It will take time to reach the high plateaus above you.

History repeats itself

The bye weeks have not been kind to Colorado this season. They come out of them not refreshed, but cold, unorganized, and sluggish. The Rapids have yet to win a game after a bye week this season.

Their first off week came after a 2-2 draw against Dallas on June 1st after a 3-0-2 month of May. The lost their next 3 matches which was of course followed by their 10-game unbeaten streak. The next bye week is what ended that streak after their win against Vancouver at home on Aug. 17. The Rapids came out 2 weeks later and lost to Sporting KC, 2-1.

Now, after last week’s rest, Colorado has to host the hot-handed Seattle Sounders who sit tied for 1st place with Real Salt Lake, but have 2 games in hand on RSL, and 1 on the rest of the teams who currently hold playoff spots.

Dick’s Sporting Good Park has become a stage for soap operas and dramas when it comes to the end of the season. Colorado has a tendency to make things interesting when they find themselves hunting for a playoff spot. It is arguable that they have the best team that they’ve had in years; including the 2010 MLS Cup winning team, but the nagging part of me says that they may not seize that opportunity.

As stated, Colorado has not won a game after a bye week all season. I have a hard time believing that they will now, though of course I hope I’m wrong. I cannot predict a win against the goal driven team from the northwest. I’ll be realistic. Colorado will continue the trend of losing out of the gates.

Though, on the contrary to my negative comments regarding Colorado’s dramatic finishes and bye week woes, the Rapids do find winning streaks after they realize that they’re on the field again. The 10-game win streak occurred after 3 losses to opponents after their first bye week, and Colorado came out after their loss to KC to win 2 games before falling to a team who hasn’t been beaten at home since March: Portland.

As long as the Rapids can bounce back from their almost inevitable loss to Seattle, and save the dramatics for actors and mimes, Colorado can still find themselves sitting pretty come playoff time.

If the Rapids do win that match out of the gate, they’ll be in new territory looking to secure a spot sooner than later, which I think all Rapids fans can agree, that it would relieve concerns of ending up in 4th or 5th and having to face the play-in game followed by facing the 1st seed.

Here’s to hoping the Rapids can avoid a photo finish, and head into playoffs with a clear-cut top seed.

NEXT UP: October 5 – Colorado Rapids vs. Seattle Sounders, Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, Commerce City, Colo. 8 p.m. EST, NBC Sports.

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Concordia College
Club Domestic:
Colorado Rapids
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Producer of "From the Pitch" with Marcelo Balboa and a personal Rapids podcast. All personality with a face for radio and profile pictures. Born a midwesterner, thankfully transformed into a Rocky Mtn dweller. Covering Colorado Rapids with words and voice