(1) 32-4. That's the Pat's record the last two years. I don't see how one could logically dismiss that as anything less than an incredible accomplishment, one of the greatest in league history.
(2) Level of Competition--In their first Super Bowl Victory, the Patriots defeated the Rams, the Greatest Show on Turf, a team considered to be on the verge of dynasty at the time. Few remember that the Rams were a two touchdown favorite. It also should be added that Super Bowl XXXVI was played in a Dome, on turf. In other words, the Patriots defeated the premiere team of the era under the most inauspicious conditions possible.
In addition to the Rams, the Patriots beat the Colts last year and this year. Although it's hard to recall, only five days ago the Colts were considered unstoppable, the greatest offense ever.
(3) The teams from one's youth almost always seem greater than they actually were. None of LB's listed teams were at their peaks simultaneously.
(4) The Snow Game against the Raiders was not settled by a bad call. It was settled by an undeniably correct call that was predicated on a stupid rule. Walt Coleman is no Don Denkinger or Larry Barnett. It's not his fault he had to enforce the Tuck Rule.
(5) The Esiason-Marino thing was hilarious. Dan was upset because Boomer was so on the money with the Manning/Marino observation.
It had to be particularly painful for Marino because he lost two conference championships at home and one Super Bowl as well, all three of which were played in adequate weather conditions and all three of which he played poorly in. Peyton has also failed to play well in the biggest games of his career. Facts are facts.
But Manning can take comfort in the fact that five years into his career Magic Johnson was often derided as "Tragic" Johnson because of his dismal performance in the 1984 Finals. By the end of his career, that performance was almost completely forgotten.
So for Manning there's still time to write a different ending. For Marino, alas, the story is written.
The battle is well and truly joined.
I agree with sexblog....and I'm a Raider fan.
Has anyone noticed how quiet and consistent the Pats season has been...even with Dillon stepping out for a while? He wasn't there for the loss to Pittsburgh this year.
The Steeler D is about to meet the REAL New England Patriots this w/e. And Big Ben is about to learn his first lesson with this final exam on the way to great career.
My pop used to say...
"....watch out for the quiet ones...they don't brag because they know they can probably kick your ass..."
Few seem to see it...the Pats are for real.
I agree with most of what Soxblog said. However, there is one quibble. When he stated that the teams LB listed werent at their peak simultaneously, I believe he erred. One look at the list of winning Superbowl teams from the Eighties/early Nineties would seem to disprove that, at least in the case of the Montana 49ers/Parcells Giants/Gibbs Redskins/Ditka Bears. The list is as follows:
XVI 1982 San Francisco 49ers
XVII 1983 Washington Redskins
XVIII 1984 LA Raiders
XIX 1985 San Francisco 49ers
XX 1986 Chicago Bears
XXI 1987 New York Giants
XXII 1988 Washington Redskins
XXIII 1989 San Francisco 49ers
XXIV 1990 San Francisco 49ers
XXV 1991 New York Giants
XXVI 1992 Washington Redskins
In that list, the only Superbowl winner that WASNT one of the teams mentioned (49ers, Giants, Bears, Redskins) is the Raiders. And they won their title by beating Gibbs' Redskins. Thats a hell of a lot of talented football teams vying for the ultimate trophy, year after year, for many years.
Soxblog undercuts his position when he says that the Rams were the 'premiere team of their era' and that the Colts are 'the greatest offense ever.' I think the Patriots are remarkable for beating both those teams; however, the Patriots also showed that those teams *just aren't as good as we thought.* The Rams, especially -- we all forget that The Greatest Show on Turf turned the ball over all the time. We should take a moment to realize that the Colts are 29th in the league in total defense.
The Pats are remarkable, yes. Best ever, maybe. Should be given kudos for solving the problem of beating the Colts or the Rams, absolutely. Staying calm and being mature under pressure? Yes, beyond a doubt. Given kudos for 'strength of schedule'? Well... maybe, maybe not.
I think that it's also worth mentioning (just like LB) that without Adam Viniateri, the Pats would have lost all three of their 'big games.' -- Klug
I could have told L.B. not to mess with Soxblog's Pats. This whole sordid mess could have ben headed off at the pass if L.B. had simply read some of Soxblog's earlier posts on the Pats. L.B. gets a new one torn for him and rightfully so.
Word of caution to L.B. -- If you can't run with the big dogs, stay on the porch.
Remember, for much of Elway's career he could not win the big one (until he won the big one a couple of times and then retired).
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