When Kevin Durant signed with the Golden State Warriors, forming what many considered a “super team,” the villagers took to the streets, burning and pillaging with pitchforks, halberds and caltrops, sparring those that showeth their displeasure to the creation of such an augmented force of basketball. Or maybe they just tweeted about it and stuff.
Either way, those in the sports community point to teams like the Warriors and now the Cavaliers, making the claim the NBA is forming unbeatable teams. But is it just the NBA?
There has been the regular off-season spike in NFL news as of late with free agency moves. A lot of big names are getting thrown around this year, but there seems to be one team in particular that is shaping up to the likings of the Golden State Warriors.
The New England Patriots are forming a squad of all squads this off-season. Resigning players such as Dont’a Hightower, Justin Coleman and others is building up the team’s seniority levels and familiarity. Trades have added explosive talents to New England’s roster with names like Brandin Cooks, Dwayne Allen and Kony Ealy.
Sure, the Pats have lost some players too this off-season. Just take high-powered tight end Martellus Bennett, for example. But these liabilities don’t come even close to offsetting the team’s assets (see Professor Krupp, I did learn something in your Accounting 213 class).
When you take arguably the best defense in the NFL last season (they did allow the least amount of points last season, so that claim is fair), and then have seven of the 12 players you sign/re-sign lining up on defense, you’re building a case for yourself to go back-to-back in Super Bowls.
On offense, you’re adding Cooks (a top-10 wideout) and Allen (who has top-10 tight end potential, as he only had one less touchdown than the departing Bennett and 20 less receptions last season while splitting targets with Jack Doyle in Indianapolis). Not to mention, Gronk’s coming back. Yeah, Tom Brady will have even more to work with next year.
So, let’s recap this scenario. A team dominates its division, is a top seed heading into the playoffs, wins the championship, and then in the ensuing off-season, signs even more talent than they had the previous year. Sound familiar?
This is almost exactly Golden State’s 2015-2016 season script (never forget, the Warriors blew a 3-1 lead).
Sure, this can happen to any team, and you can’t blame them for wanting to get better. But can the critics in the NBA claiming unfair competition say the same for the NFL?
I can see it now, a not well-thought out, sporadic, baseless tweet: “The Patriots have unlimited funds to sign any player they want! Also, Bill Belichick was wire-tapping Roger Goodell’s phones during last year’s draft – Sad!”
Regardless, I think the Patriots are going to have the highest odds in Vegas of winning the Super Bowl out of any team in a very long time – perhaps ever. It’ll be interesting to see how the next off-season goes to see if any other teams join the Pats’ ranks as a super team.
But in the meantime, let’s not forget that the Lions have built up an offensive line this off-season that could prove to be one of the best in all the land. Who knows, maybe the Lions could be in the mix as one of the potential NFC teams to challenge Tom Brady and the Patriots in Super Bowl 52.