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Keller @ Large: Disappointment Eased By Experience

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A fan of the New England Patriots looks on after the Jets defeated the Patriots 28 to 21 in their 2011 AFC divisional playoff game at Gillette Stadium on January 16, 2011 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

A fan of the New England Patriots looks on after the Jets defeated the Patriots 28 to 21 in their 2011 AFC divisional playoff game at Gillette Stadium on January 16, 2011 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

WBZ-TV's Jon Keller Jon Keller
Jon Keller is WBZ-TV News' Political Analyst, and his "Keller A...
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BOSTON (CBS) – Am I surprised and disappointed about what happened yesterday at Gillette Stadium? Yes, severely.

My prediction of a big Pats win couldn’t have been more wrong, and the fact that I had plenty of local company in that error doesn’t make it any easier.

Listen to Jon’s Commentary:

Congratulations are due to the Jets, who played aggressive, mistake-free football and deserved to win. No question, it was a proud day for New Jersey sports and all those who follow it.

But my disappointment is eased by experience, which I’d like to share now with the younger fans who may be taking this unexpectedly-early end to the season pretty hard.

Kids, I know it hurts, but the pain you’re feeling is actually a good sign. It shows you’re a real fan, that you care about your team, not just some casual observer without any real emotional investment in the outcome.

When you make that investment, you are connecting with one of the most intense and rewarding experiences a human can have – that of being a true fan.

Think of all the pleasure you had watching the Pats this year, and how sweet it will be when we beat the Jets on the way to the Super Bowl next year.

The flip side of that is how you’re feeling now, but trust me, those bad feelings will fade by next year, and the memory of them can and will be washed away by a future triumph.

Just ask any Red Sox fan how that works.

Young Patriots fans, this is what life is all about, you strive to succeed, and sometimes you do, but sometimes you have to watch someone else succeed instead of you.

All you can do is what the Patriots did do this year, try your hardest, and whatever the result, handle it with class. Then come back next time and try a little harder.

So don’t let the way you feel today linger. Take any lingering bitterness or frustration and channel it into something positive, a cause that can bring the smile back to your football-loving face faster than anything.

Ready?

Repeat after me: go, Steelers, go.

You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. and 12:25 p.m.  You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.

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