Back-to-back Super Bowl runs followed by back-to-back Divisional round exits. Now we see two of the last three teams to eliminate the Seahawks and their title hopes battling for a postgame spot next to Roger Goodell with the Lombardi trophy in hand.
Atlanta Falcons, or New England Patriots? Tom Brady, or Matt Ryan? Dan Quinn, or Bill Belichick? While that last choice shouldn't be too hard, every other is comparable to choosing which of your least favorite foods you would like to eat for dinner tonight.
Atlanta certainly has the underdog factor going for them, along with local connections. Dan Quinn of course was Kris Richard's predecessor as defensive coordinator, and Desmond Trufant (though injured and not playing) ahils from the Tacoma area and played his college ball at the University of Washington.
However the national media won't be talking about that until the draft and certainly not until training camp. Consider the main argument/story that will be circulated throughout every sports media outlet in these United States if the Falcons are crowned champs: is Matt Ryan the league's best QB?
Year in and year out, no matter who wins that team's QB is either lofted into the greatest alive conversation or debated ad nauseam. What's more, if the Falcons win, they will beat Tom Brady, who is certainly in the argument for greatest QB alive if not greatest of all time.
What is even more certain is that we will be bombarded with Matt Ryan's image pushing every product and on every show remotely related to talking in the country. Therefore we have to ask ourselves, are we ready for a Matt Ryan world? America could surely get behind him, a nice, clean-cut wholesome guy with a squeaky clean rep. Which should equate to all Matty Ice all the time.
Something about Matt Ryan rubs me the wrong way, maybe it's because he's a grown man with a baby face, even though my beard is on level with a 16 year old. Maybe it's because he's beat us twice in the playoffs, I just don't really know. For that reason - which I don't know - I'm rooting for Tom Brady. I have no problem with the media talking about a guy with five rings being talked about as one of the greatest ever, even if he did throw his support behind Donald Trump.
Though at the end of the day, it's still Go Hawks.
Photo: Flickr/Ben Rea