Jim Irsay’s mouth is writing checks his team probably won’t cash.
The Indianapolis Colts owner tweeted back in February — on the heels of the New England Patriots’ third Super Bowl title in five seasons and sixth since the 2001 campaign — that the standard for being considered the greatest team of all time is quite simple: Win three championships in a row.
The declaration was seen as a shot at the Patriots, who have been one of Indianapolis’ biggest rivals dating back to the legendary quarterback battles between Tom Brady and Peyton Manning in the early 2000s, but Irsay doubled down last week at the NFL league meetings.
“You guys know, I will unabashedly say, I’d like to win three in a row,” Irsay said, according to the Indianapolis Star. “How hard is it? I mean, it’s hard as hell just to win one.”
We can’t stress the final part of that comment enough.
The Patriots are in the midst of an amazing run spanning nearly two decades, yet they’ve won back-to-back titles only once — in the 2003 and 2004 seasons. Most teams would kill just for one shot at a Super Bowl crown. And here’s Irsay making room for three Lombardi Trophies.
Also, if anyone should know how hard it is to win multiple titles, it’s the Colts owner. Indianapolis won only one Super Bowl in its 13 seasons with Manning as the starting quarterback despite fielding some star-studded teams. And the Colts have failed to reach the big game since Manning’s departure, with their deepest playoff run coming in the 2014 season, when Indianapolis lost to New England 45-7 in the AFC Championship Game.
Nevertheless, things are looking up for the Colts, who went 10-6 and won a playoff game last season, exceeding even the loftiest expectations in Andrew Luck’s return from injury. And Irsay just can’t contain his excitement, however outlandish he sounds to the general population.
“I really feel like this is a young team that’s ascending,” Irsay said last week.
Winning one Super Bowl is hard. Winning back-to-back Super Bowls is extremely difficult. Winning three Super Bowls in a row? Pump the brakes, Jim.
Thumbnail photo via Brian Spurlock/USA TODAY Sports Images