Sports are fun.
At least, they are supposed to be.
With the 2023 NFL Playoffs about to get underway, we thought it was a good moment to throw the deep analysis outside, and ask this simple question:
What team would be the most fun to see win the Super Bowl?
Full disclosure, there was a general consensus among us as to the correct answer to this question, but fear not! We made a case for a number of different teams, even some that might be a bit surprising.
Putting aside the thoughts of what Tom Brady winning his eighth Super Bowl would do for his legacy — and for any thoughts he might have of retirement — but the Tampa Bay Buccaneers winning the Super Bowl this season would be incredible for this reason:
They would become the first time that finished the regular season with a losing record to win the Super Bowl.
The closest we have come to a Super Bowl-winning team with a losing record in the regular season came back during the 2011-2012 season, when the fourth seed in the NFC finished with a 9-7 record. However, that team caught fire over the playoffs, winning three-straight games — including the NFC Championship Game in overtime — to advance to the Super Bowl.
Seeing the first NFL team to win a Super Bowl despite finishing the regular season with a losing record sounds like fun to me. — Mark Schofield
The 49ers are the hottest team in the league heading into the playoffs and they bring plenty of entertainment on both sides of the ball. Kyle Shanahan has designed an offense that can be unstoppable when it’s on a roll, and it’s paired with a ferocious defense.
But the real reason it would be fun to see the 49ers win Super Bowl 57 can be summed up in two words: Brock Purdy.
No Super Bowl champion has had a rookie starting quarterback. More importantly, prior to Purdy, no Mr. Irrelevant quarterback had completed a forward pass in a regular season game! There have been seven QBs drafted with the final pick in the draft, with Chad Kelly being the most recent. Kicker Ryan Succop is the most decorated Mr. Irrelevant, remaining active since 2009 and being consistently one of the better kickers in the league.
But if Purdy and the 49ers win the Super Bowl, he’d be ready to stake his claim as the best Mr. Irrelevant ever. No offense to Succop and kickers, but the learning curve for QB is drastically different than that of kicker. The fact that Purdy would have come off the bench and helped guide the 49ers to a Super Bowl would speak volumes. — David Fucillo
Do we really need to explain this one? Before this season ever began the Bills were most of the country’s second team. Older fans remember their crushing three-peat Super Bowl losses from 91-93 — punctuated by “wide right,” the most infamous field goal miss in NFL history. Younger fans only know the Bills as the lovable losers swallowed alive by two decades of Patriots’ greatness and wild fans willing to throw themselves through flaming tables.
A Bills win would have been the ultimate underdog comeback story, completing this team’s rebuild and ascension years in the making. Now we have Damar Hamlin’s incredible story to add to the tapestry of this season. Hamlin collapsing on the field will never be forgotten for those who watched it live. Waking up from a coma and asking whether the Bills won only added to the story. Now he’s recovering there is absolutely nothing that would be better than seeing Buffalo hoist the Lombardi Trophy and win a ring for Damar.
The emotion, the drama, and the story make the Bills the ultimate fun story to close out the 2022 season. — James Dator
Smart NFL analysts have spent this season trying to convince the public that the Vikings aren’t nearly as good as their record. Minnesota pulled off the nearly impossible feat of finishing 13-4 overall but still getting out-scored by their opponents. Quarterback Kirk Cousins continues to put up solid statistical seasons, but often feels like his next back-breaking mistake is just around the corner. The Vikings’ defense was also a disappointment, giving up the fifth most points in the league.
Still, Minnesota just found a way win almost every week, even when it required the biggest comeback in NFL history. Somehow, the Vikings kept pulling Ws out of thin air, and it mostly just made everyone mad. Now imagine how baffled the public would be if the horseshoe up Minnesota’s behind led them all the way to the Super Bowl.
I’m saying this would be the most fun outcome because it would be the one that would make people the most upset. And hey, if we get some cool Justin Jefferson plays sprinkled in, that’s even better. The Vikings feel far more likely to lose in the first round to the Giants than to win the whole thing, but I can’t imagine an outcome that would be more puzzling to the very bright people covering this sport on the daily basis. — Ricky O’Donnell
Some men just want to watch North Florida burn.
I don’t think that anyone is prepared for what would happen if the Jacksonville Jaguars made won the Super Bowl. Not only would it be the most incredible rebound story in the history of the NFL, making Urban Meyer look like a total fraud in the process — but we’d get to witness Duval party like it never has before.
That’s ... actually terrifying.
The best way I can imagine a Jacksonville Super Bowl would be those scenes from Woodstock ‘99 when everyone lost it and started setting fires everywhere just because they could. You know what started all that? Limp Bizkit. Know where Fred Durst is from?
Everyone has their own definition of “fun,” but I need to see what the hell would happen if the Jags manage to pull this off after almost two decades of pent up rage and frustration. — James Dator