But these rivalries don’t really have any spice to them. College football has rivalries that are nearly a century old, and in some cases, have a ridiculous reward to go along with it like when Nebraska and Wisconsin duke it out for the Freedom Trophy, or the Golden Hat between Oklahoma and Texas. Plus, these games are usually just better.
Let’s change that. Here are some NFL rivalries that don’t exist, but would add a little flavor with unique awards.
Falcons vs. Rams: The Gridlock Interlock
Atlanta and Los Angeles have it the worst when it comes to traffic. You need a week to get anywhere in Los Angeles in the year 2018. In Atlanta, being two miles and 45 minutes from your destination is entirely possible.
Is New York traffic awful too? It most certainly is. But there’s at least a widely used form of public transportation there. Atlantans and Angelenos don’t have that same luxury, and they are stuck burning away hundreds of hours of their lives in traffic.
The Falcons and Rams both used to play in the old NFC West, so this kind of works out anyway.
Trophy: The Bronze Gas Container, representative of a worst-case scenario in which you run out of gas in traffic.
The Seahawks and Dolphins have nothing in common, which is the beauty of this rivalry. It’s based solely on the fact that these two NFL teams are the farthest away from each other.
The teams will alternate as the home team year in and year out. The only way this can be broken is if there’s a tie, in which case the next season the game will be played in Lawrence, Kansas, because it seems pretty close to being in the middle, and would be a treat for people who normally are only treated to Kansas Jayhawk football.
Trophy: The Golden Neck Pillow, because staying comfortable on that long flight is key.
People from Las Vegas and Arizona will always tell you the following:
- It’s hot where they live
- But it’s a dry heat
The Raiders still have a couple of years for this rivalry to kick in, but it’s hard to think of a better climate-based matchup than this one. The teams will be separated by about 280 miles, which would be relatively close for an NFL rivalry.
As of right now, both of these teams are atrocious. Week 11’s game was a perfect example —an ugly slapfight topped off with a rollercoaster of emotions between Jon Gruden and Derek Carr.
Trophy: The Silver Cactus. These are desert teams, so why not.
Cardinals vs. Bears: The Old Cup
Most of the NFL’s current rivalries are hardly rivalries at all. They’re just matchups between two teams who were good at the same time for a decade at some point in the past, so we still call it a rivalry.
Since NFL traditionalists love that Old Shit, we’re going to slap together this rivalry between the NFL’s two oldest teams, the Bears and the Cardinals. The Chicago Cardinals (now Arizona) and the Decatur Staleys (now Chicago Bears) were both established in 1920.
See, there’s something for everybody, even in these imaginary rivalries.
Trophy: A literal bag of dirt, because the teams are old as dirt.
Steelers vs. Browns: The Battle For Youngstown
Cleveland and Pittsburgh are the bread that makes up the Youngstown, Ohio, sandwich. There are probably more Steeler fans in Youngstown than Browns fans, just because, well, who wants to root for the Browns when there’s a justifiable better option?
Either way, these two will get to duke it out just once a year now at Youngstown State University’s Stambaugh Stadium.
These two teams are already division “rivals.” But how much of a rivalry is it really when the Steelers are 34-6-1 against the Browns since they came back in 1999? Let’s beef this thing up over a city with a population of 67,000 and a trophy.
Trophy: The Steel Beam. It’s engraved with the names of the starting 22 from each year, and gets longer as the years go by.
Packers vs. Bills: The Alcohol Game
If you look at most lists of The Drunkest Cities In America, the list is basically any incorporated place in Wisconsin, so the Packers are in here. Then, we’ve got the Bills, who are known for their alcohol-fueled tailgates that feature the breaking of tables, fights, or setting themselves ablaze.
Let’s these two teams, whose fanbases are fueled by alcohol duke it out. The tailgate scene will be incredible, there will be no limit on the madness that could ensue in the crowd, and after the game, they all just keep going.
The winning team’s fans get free beer, in a similar fashion to that of the Browns’ Bud Light fridges.
Trophy: A 40 oz that is consumed at midfield before the very first game, that is then passed on for the remainder of time.
There are multiple bird and cat mascots in the NFL, but there are only two kinds of horses. And I really just wanted this rivalry so we could call it Horse Shit, because this rivalry might be just that if it existed, too.
I can think of at least one Eagles fan who might be interested in this one.
Trophy: The Saddle — a horse saddle made of leather from footballs.