How the tables have turned from Super Bowl XXXVI to Super Bowl LIII
Seventeen years ago there was a second-year coach named Bill Belichick who along with his back up quarterback Tom Brady led the New England Patriots to a Cinderella run and beat the highly favored "Greatest Show on Turf" team, the St. Louis Rams.
That Rams team had some Hall of Famer players like Kurt Warner, Marshall Faulk, Aeneas Williams, and Orlando Pace. The Rams also had a ton of players who were top notch in their respective positions like Issac Bruce, Torrey Holt, Leonard Little, and London Fletcher.
That Super Bowl XXXVI was the start of a new era. That night in 2002 at the Louisana Superdome, no one thought the Rams, favored by 14 points, would lose to a backup quarterback and start the new period of Patriots' domination in the NFL.
Now we come to 2019, 17 years later and again we have another team, the Patriots, who have future Hall of Famers in Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski. They are both flanked by one of the best coaches ever in the history of the NFL in Bill Belichick.
This year's Patriots are not as favored as the 2002 Rams were during their Super Bowl. Now the tables have turned, and the Patriots are that team that is supposed to win, and the Rams are the underdogs to the dynasty. All too familiar for the Patriots.
The St. Louis Rams of old have now moved and have become the Los Angeles Rams. With a new city comes new players that want to lead the new generation of NFL stars. Players like Jared Goff, Aaron Donald, Todd Gurley, and Ndamukong Suh to name a few are ready to replace the Bradys and Gronkowskis of the NFL.
The Rams also have a new era coach in Sean McVay, the bright young mind calling the shots for the Los Angeles outfit. A long time ago, Patriots coach Bill Belichick was the same young, brilliant mind. This Rams team has all the tools to succeed and are poised to start a new era in the NFL, one that does not involve the domination of the New England Patriots.
Both teams have switched roles. Back in 2002, the Rams were the favorite team, a dynasty of sorts. Now the New England Patriots are the favorite dynasty team since 2002. Patriots have been in nine Super Bowls in seventeen years, winning five championships over that period.
Has the time come to pass the baton over to the Los Angeles Rams who could usher in this new era we speak of? The Rams possess a strong enough foundation to win for many years. Will this year, on February 3, 2019, be the end of a Patriots dynasty we saw for the last seventeen years? We will find out on Sunday, but let us first get our predictions in for the Super Bowl.
I sit here typing this article realizing my desire in wanting the Los Angeles Rams to be the team that finally takes over the torch from the New England Patriots. My brain still ponders the thought that the Patriots always find a way to win the big game.
My mind tells my heart that the Patriots will find a way to run their three-headed (Sony Michel, Rex Burkhead, and James White) monster running attack on the Rams to win the Super Bowl. My mind keeps telling me that we will have to endure another year of the Patriots and Tom Brady on top.
Then there is my heart, which clearly says to go with my original pick for the Super Bowl. In my predictions article from the beginning of the year, I had stated the Rams would win the Super Bowl this year. Just because my mind and my heart are giving me two different answers, you will get two predictions.
I do not think we will have to wait for long for a team to take over from the New England Patriots as the new dynasty in the NFL. The Kansas City Chiefs and Los Angeles Rams have shown this year that they might be just on the cusp of finally ending the Patriots' run and start their own.
Mind: New England Patriots 31 Los Angeles Rams 24
Heart and Original SB choice: Los Angeles Rams 31 New England Patriots 24