Jim Irsay Moves Goalposts On “G.O.A.T.” Debate In A Way That Conveniently Discounts The Patriots’ Accomplishments

Photo: Andy Lyons (Getty Images)

Despite the recent success of a New England-based franchise, there are plenty of people who will still argue over which NFL team is the greatest of all time. Is it the Cowboys from the ‘90s, or the Joe Montana-led 49ers of the ‘80s? Are the Patriots better in their current form, or was their team from the early aughts more talented? Could one-year wonders like the 1985 Bears or the 1972 Dolphins be in the mix? What about the ‘70s Steelers? In theory, these are all valid suggestions, even though the Patriots currently make the best case. Still, if you ask Colts owner Jim Irsay, it’s actually none of these teams. According to him, the “G.O.A.T.” doesn’t even exist yet as no team has accomplished his oddly-lofty goal of three consecutive titles.

Oh, okay. It’s not that no G.O.A.T. exists, it’s just that Irsay is an old-school guy. None of these fancy modern teams tickle his fancy. Get your West Coast offenses and Steel Curtain defenses outta here! The G.O.A.T. status truly belongs to a team that was around when football was played by the MANLIEST OF MEN whose postgame recovery included a sip of whiskey and a treatment of leeches on the heel: the Green Bay Packers. Sure, he might not have immediately remembered the two threepeats the franchise has completed—1929-31 and 1964-66—but I have no doubt that is surely what he meant.

Hm, never mind then. Not sure what’s going on in Jim’s ol’ noggin, but there are already quite a few teams that qualify for that status, even without that accomplishment. If I didn’t know any better, I’d say this was a blatant attempt at ignoring all of those teams—since the one thing they tend to have in common is “just” repeating their championship run—in order to give his own team an opportunity at claiming that status. This feels even more sketchy since there is one team that has been to four of the last five Super Bowls, winning three of them, that could arguably take that spot now, or permanently snatch it up later if they keep winning.

But Irsay’s always been of sound mind when it comes to these things, so who am I to argue with this flawless logic? The G.O.A.T. field is wide open, folks. It’s anybody’s game.

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