The National Football League is, by far, the premiere league in North American professional sports, if not the entire world. Part of the big reason for that is because there's so much parity involved, and because the margin of error between failure and success is such a thin one. That's why I find it hilarious that as soon as the Super Bowl is over. . .not just this year, but in any season. . .the word "dynasty" immediately starts getting tossed around about the winning team.
To realize exactly how foolish that is, allow me to present you with a list of the NFC representatives in the last ten Super Bowls:
2001 - St. Louis Rams
2002 - Tampa Bay Buccaneers
2003 - Carolina Panthers
2004 - Philadelphia Eagles
2005 - Seattle Seahawks
2006 - Chicago Bears
2007 - New York Giants
2008 - Arizona Cardinals
2009 - New Orleans Saints
2010 - Green Bay Packers
See any consecutive representatives on that list? No, neither do I. . .largely because there are no repeat representatives on that list. In the last ten Super Bowls, the NFC has been represented by ten different franchises. The NFC teams that haven't gone during that time? Minnesota (but you knew that already), Detroit, Dallas, Washington, Atlanta, and San Francisco.
Granted, the AFC has not been nearly as varied. . .basically over this same stretch, if you're not the Pittsburgh Steelers, Indianapolis Colts, or New England Patriots, you aren't invited to the party (except for that one year that the Oakland Raiders managed to sneak in and get throttled by Tampa Bay).
This is just another of many reasons. . .which we'll detail in the near future here. . .that the Minnesota Vikings have plenty of hope and plenty to look forward to in 2011, provided that they can put together a solid off-season. Talks of "dynasties" in today's NFL are ludicrous. Simply getting to the Super Bowl in consecutive seasons is a hard enough task, never mind repeating as champions. . .and since the salary cap era started, there have only been three instances of teams winning consecutive Super Bowls. Those would be the Dallas Cowboys winning Super Bowls XXVII and XXVIII (which you could argue was before the effects of the cap were really felt), the Denver Broncos winning Super Bowls XXXII and XXXIII, and the New England Patriots winning Super Bowls XXXVIII and XXXIX.
Could one of our biggest rivals, potentially, be on the verge of a "dynasty?" It's possible, I suppose. . .of course, the Saints were supposed to be on the verge of a dynasty after their victory last year. And the Steelers were supposed to be on the verge of a dynasty after their victory two years ago. And the Giants were supposed to be on the verge of a dynasty after their victory three years ago. And the Colts were supposed to be on the verge of a dynasty after their victory four years ago. And the. . .well, you get where I'm going with this.
To borrow a phrase from a famous cinematic philosopher. . .people are using this word "dynasty." I do not think it means what they think it means.