So there are a lot of blogs out there. Some are stupid. Some are funny. But some, and only a few, are absolutely brilliant. This is one of those. Long story short, this guy, Jason Spires, is a huge sports fan, but doesn’t have an NFL team (a crime if you ask me) In an effort to remedy that sad situation, he has written a letter to all 32 NFL teams asking them to state their case on why he should root for them. So far the Lions (congrats on their win btw), the Bills and the Titans are the only teams to respond.
As a service to this poor lost soul, I would like to state the case for the New England Patriots. To me there are three key reasons for the supporting the Patriots.
1. Present: It is well-accepted that the label “team of the decade” will either go to the Patriots or the Steelers. Even if Pitt. does claim that mantle (though after losing to the Bengals, I like our chances) there is nothing like supporting a team you know will be competitive every year. That drive to win starts at the top with our owner, Robert Kraft. Mr. Kraft comes from the Rooney school of ownership. He wants to win. He needs to win. He will stop at nothing to win. He knew Belichick was his guy and was willing to give up draft picks to get him. That commitment to winning means that, regardless of whether we are the team of this decade, we will be in the running for team of the next decade and the next decade and so on.
2. Future: The Patriots, perhaps better than any other team, don’t just play the current year. They are always thinking about how they can be better in coming years. All one has to do is look at the Richard Seymour trade to understand that. The Pats Brass made the determination that they were unlikely to be able to resign him (because, when they grade players, they NEVER operate on emotion) and that the drop-off between him and Jarvis Green and Myron Prior was worth a first round pick (from the woeful Oakland Raiders). But they didn’t stop there. Aware of the contract negotiations and that there would likely be a rookie payscale in place by 2011 (but not by 2010) they took the 2011 first-rounder. How many teams would have that foresight and patience? Also, they are brilliant with moving around draft picks and still getting the player they want.
3. Veterans: Two points here. First, the Pats are a smart team and smart teams are fun to watch. Watching players like Tedy Bruschi, Troy Brown, Tom Brady or Rodney Harrison who may not have been the most talented players work their butts off and win because they were always the most prepared and smartest is so much fun. Also, something about the Pats culture allows vets in the “twilight” of their careers (Seau, Taylor) play like they are young men again and “problem players” (Moss, Dillon) be good citizens and huge contributors. Also, they also have a scheme such that they can replace players who leave and barely miss a beat. They went 11-5 with Matt Cassel who looks very human this year for heaven’s sake!
4. Fan Base: Boston fans are passionate, knowledgeable, loyal and friendly (at least to each other) Not to mention that, no matter what city you are in, you will find Patriots fans. And, as I’m sure you know, there is nothing that compares to going to an away game with tons of like-minded fans. Going to the Pats final regular season game in NY against the Giants in 2007 was easily one of the most fun sports experiences of my life.
Well, there you go. I can’t give you any Pats merch, but hopefully I have helped you make up your mind…Good Luck!