A terrible ranking of the top NFL teams of the decade

Andy Hart
July 08, 2019 - 1:43 pm

Lists and rankings are intended to be discussed, dissected and sometimes simply dismissed.

Even in the slowest of times on the NFL’s calendar – when the hardest working guys like No Days Off! Bill Belichick are enjoying sun, summer and relaxation – a list recently put forth by NFL.com would seem to fall into the final category.

Last week the official website of the NFL posted a story detailing what it proclaimed as “The Top 10 NFL teams of the decade.” (We’ll ignore the fact that there is one more year left in the latest decade. Whatever.)

While an argument can be made that the 2013 Seahawks are worthy of the top spot, most of the rest of the list is borderline worthless.

Belichick’s Patriots – the 2016 version that beat the Falcons with the comeback in Super Bowl LI -- earn the No. 4 slot. That’s New England’s only representation on the list because of the author’s rule “to prevent this from becoming a list populated only by Patriots, Broncos and Seahawks, I limited myself to one representative from each franchise. This is an arbitrary rule that I feel great about.”

At least somebody feels great about it, because most of the rest of the football-watching world was left confused by both the rule and entirety of the list. There is actually a rule in place to limit the best teams from being on the list of the best teams?

A Patriots team that’s been to the Super Bowl five times since 2010 and eight straight AFC title games is left with only one representative on the list of the top 10 teams of the decade. And even that pick, the 2016 squad, is debatable as the best New England team in that span. A strong argument can be made that the 2014 team was more well-rounded when it won a ring by beating the Legion of Boom Seahawks.

But the underrepresentation of the Patriots is the least of the problems with this list.

How about the fact that Cam Newton’s 2015 Panthers that fell on their face in the Super Bowl were given the No. 2 spot?

Or that the Super Bowl XLVII-losing 49ers that went just 11-4-1 in the regular season are on the list at all?

Remember those dominant 2017 Jaguars that had a forgettable offense and lost to the Patriots in the AFC title game? They made the cut at No. 10.

And the Patrick Mahomes-led Chiefs from last season, a team that lost in New England during the regular season and then to Tom Brady’s squad again at home in the AFC title game, obviously they are one of the 10 best teams of the decade, right?

Hell, no. But it’s the middle of the summer. Belichick is on vacation and NFL “news” is lacking.

So take NFL.com’s ranking of the best teams of decade for what it’s worth, which isn’t very much.

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