Sunday, February 7, 2010

Burning Super Bowl Questions

As you know, I am a Bills fan and have therefore endured four years of Super Bowl futility. Despite these painful memories, I continue to watch the big game every year. This year is Super Bowl 44. I have been watching since #25 so that makes this my 20th Super Bowl! This fact starts to make me feel old until my parents point out that they have watched every single Super Bowl that has ever been played!
Thinking about the big game brought some questions to my mind. This is New Orleans’ first appearance. How many possible combinations of Super Bowl new comers are there? There are only 3 possible ways to have a new comer versus another new comer (the Lions versus either the Texans, Browns, or Jaguars). There are 64 ways to have one new comer versus a team that has already appeared.
The media (and fans) love a feel-good story. How much would they love it if two teams who have never won played each other? There would be a happy ending for one fan base. How many combinations of no win vs. no win are there? Not that New Orleans has won, there are 12 teams who have never won (7 NFC: Eagles, Lions, Vikings, Cardinals, Seahawks, Panthers, and Falcons; 5 AFC: Bills, Browns, Jaguars, Texans, and Chargers) so that makes 35 possible combinations.
The ultimate emotional story would be teams who have only lost, but never won a Super Bowl meeting. The Eagles, Vikings, Cardinals, Seahawks, Panthers, Falcons, Bills, Titans, and Chargers have appeared but never won. That makes 18 possible combinations of losers. The most intriguing of these would have to be Minnesota versus Buffalo as both teams have lost four Super Bowls. The Bills have the added benefit of losing theirs consecutively. Go Buffalo!
How many different combinations of Super Bowls are there? There could be 256 different match-ups, but 40 have already been played. Why isn’t it 44 since there have been 44 Super Bowls? Well, Buffalo played Dallas twice (sadly with the same result) and Pittsburgh played Dallas three times (winning one) and the Jets can’t play Indianapolis any longer. So that leaves 216 unique combinations.
This got me thinking of other interesting Super Bowl match-ups.

The Pirate Bowl: Tampa Bay vs. Oakland - I didn’t make this one up; we saw it just seven years ago. Too bad Johnny Depp and Orlando Bloom didn’t perform the half time show.

The Purple Bowl: Minnesota vs. Baltimore - I’m a girl so I care about things like uniform colors (though Paul Lucas of Uni Watch does too). Not that there is anything wrong with men in purple, I just always thought it was a strange color choice. Though I do like how the Ravens have paired it with black.

The New Jersey Bowl: New York Giants vs. New York Jets - I say the winner should get its team name on the stadium for all games, by both teams.

The They-Used-to-Play-in-Boston Bowl: Washington vs. New England - I’m sure most people know that the Patriots used to play in Boston but were moved to Foxoboro, just 40 minutes south. But lesser known is the fact that the Redskins also called Beantown home back in 1932-1936.

The Not-In-LA-Anymore Bowl: St. Louis vs. Oakland - I was a kid when these teams moved out of La La Land. It was very strange to me that teams could just leave town. (I was only 2 when the Colts moved.) As an adult, the fact that relocation happens is an everyday concern for a Bills fan!

The Next-Door-Neighbor Bowl: San Francisco vs. Oakland - This is the closest two Super Bowl teams could be as the current National and American Conferences are arranged, other than the afore mentioned New Jersey Bowl.

The Home-Field-Advantage Bowl: It could happen, couldn’t it? What would the NFL do if a team ended up playing the Super Bowl at home???

I don’t go to my grandparents’ house in Buffalo to watch the games any more, but I always do watch. Not just the commercials, either. Football is the only sport I love enough to watch when I have no rooting interest.

How long will the party in New Orleans?

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