It’s now been two months since the Los Angeles Rams won Super Bowl LVI over the Bengals. Since they lifted that coveted Lombardi Trophy over their heads, talk has been swirling over a potential dynasty brewing in Hollywood.
Before we continue, I’d like to remind everyone to PAUSE for a moment. Dynastic talk has been nothing new for recent NFL champs.
The 2010 Green Bay Packers were going to be a dynasty remember? It’s going on 12 years since their last appearance and that probably won’t change anytime soon.
The same was said about the 2013 Seattle Seahawks but they threw all their chances away at the one-yard line. Oh well, at least they have Russell. Whoops...too soon?
And the same was said about the 2017 Philadelphia Eagles. Their chances came and Wentz.(Hee-hee get it?)
The only teams seemingly immune from this talk are ones led by Tom Brady. (Why couldn’t you let LA retire you with grace old man?)
As you’ve seen, no champ is safe from any dynastic whisperings. But what about the dreaded Super Bowl hangover? It spares absolutely no one and it’s definitely not what you should say three times into a mirror unless you’d like to summon bad luck upon your team for all eternity.
The hangover applies to both the winning and losing teams of any particular Super Bowl. It’s a big reason as to why there hasn’t been a repeat champion since the 2004 New England Patriots. Nice to know Mr. Brady is immune from hangovers too. I swear that guy had to have made a deal with the devil.
Since the Patriots defeated the Eagles 24-21 in Super Bowl XXXIX to win their second title in a row, only three teams have returned to the Big Game a year after winning it all. Obviously, these teams never won but they were able to overcome the hangover to make it back.
What about the losing teams? The results are prettier than you think. In the last decade, seven runner-ups made their return to the playoffs while just three teams missed the postseason altogether. One of those teams with that dubious distinction was the 2019 Rams. I don’t understand how given I could’ve sworn this tweet would’ve spared them:
I dont really see @RamsNFL suffering the "Super Bowl hangover" like many teams do. They seem to be poised for longevity.— J.M. McCrary (@JMMcCrary) February 5, 2019
As if we need another reminder of that challenging campaign: Los Angeles missed the playoffs for the ONLY time under Sean McVay. This was the year LA realized Jared Goff might not have been a wise investment. You win some and you lose some Snead.
Why bring any of this up? To drive home the point that ABSOLUTELY NOTHING is guaranteed in the NFL. Just because a team looks ready to become a dynasty or immune from the Super Bowl hangover does not make it so.
The Rams could miss the playoffs in 2022 for all we know. Anything can happen but I’d say LA would really have to try in failing to make the postseason in a weakened NFC.
I wouldn’t put too much stock into anything a glass half-empty guy like myself has to say. So, what can the defending champs do to avoid that dreaded hangover that plagued them after their last trip? As of this point, Tyrann Mathieu would be their cure-all.
Not totally joking there but LA has done all they can to reload an already star-studded roster. While they’ve lost plenty of talent, they’ve added Allen Robinson and Bobby Wagner, two vets chasing a ring, or another in Wagner’s case.
The difference between this year’s team and that of 2019 is how the proven veterans on the squad are determined to prevent the errors of that lost campaign. It helps when one of those errors is now in Detroit. I think Matthew Stafford said it best when asked how to avoid the hangover:
Focusing on the present is best possible method. Too often is seems teams believe their own hype and fail to live up to those weighty expectations. LA has far too much talent to suffer the hangover for too long. The team has numerous vets with their mentality in the right place to prevent it from happening the entire season.
Who knows what will happen to the 2022 Los Angeles Rams. Maybe they’ll return to defend their crown or maybe it won’t be their year. Again, I wouldn’t listen too much to the glass half-empty writer composing this article.
As we know, anything can happen.