Here’s another way the New England Patriots dynasty has etched its place in NFL history.
USA TODAY’s Nate Davis ranked the 100 greatest teams in NFL history ahead of the league’s centenary season, and the Patriots predictably were prominent on the list. Ten of the last 18 New England squads appear in Davis’ reckoning, however, none cracked the top 15 spots.
They are as follows, per Boston.com’s Hayden Bird:
17. 2007 Patriots (went 16-0, lost Super Bowl XLII)
19. 2016 Patriots (went 14-2, won Super Bowl LI)
29. 2004 Patriots (went 14-2, won Super Bowl XXXIX)
40. 2014 Patriots (went 12-4, won Super Bowl XLIX)
60. 2003 Patriots (went 14-2, won Super Bowl XXXVIII)
63. 2011 Patriots (went 13-3, lost Super Bowl XLVI)
66. 2012 Patriots (went 12-4, lost AFC Championship Game)
70. 2018 Patriots (went 11-5, won Super Bowl LIII)
72. 2001 Patriots (went 11-5, won Super Bowl XXXVI)
81. 2017 Patriots (went 13-3, lost Super Bowl LI)
While Davis admits there’s “no fair or reasonable way to compare teams spanning so many decades of NFL football,” he also reveals “extra weight and consideration was conceded to the modern game.”
Given the fact the Patriots have reached the Super Bowl nine times since the 2001 season, it’s no surprise they’re all over the “100 Greatest Teams” list.
However, New England fans might feel some regret over the 2007 team’s loss to the New York Giants in Super Bowl XLII. Had those Patriots beaten the Giants, they almost certainly would have topped the list and pushed the 1985 Chicago Bears down one peg.
Thumbnail photo via Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports Images