The Kansas City Chiefs are defending Super Bowl champions. They have Patrick Mahomes, who most people agree has a legitimate chance to prove himself the most skilled quarterback to ever play the position. They won 14 of their first 15 games before starting Chad Henne in the season finale. They were favored in every game except Week 3 on the road against the Ravens. They have been the favorite to win the Super Bowl since futures were released with confetti still on the field last year in Miami.
After falling down 9-0 to the Buffalo Bills in the AFC Championship Game, KC put on a stunning exhibition of offensive firepower, going on a 38-6 run and proving they are the best team playing the sport — a statement I'd wager at least 85 percent of the population agrees with and wouldn't bother debating.
So while I understand why Chiefs fans like Nick Wright are reacting like they've proven the world wrong by returning to the Super Bowl and vanquished the haters and doubters, I don't really know what to do about it except take the entirely too drastic step of eliminating sports conversations altogether.
This is so flummoxing. The entire concept of a team having a Super Bowl hangover is an artificial construct upon which to build a debate segment around. It's a thing pundits simply say to say because the honest truth is far more boring. Going on air year-round and correctly pointing out that the Chiefs are most likely to win it all again is bad television.
The Pittsburgh Steelers started the year 11-0. It merited discussion. It appeared they would have home-field advantage throughout the playoffs, therefore making Mahomes' route back to the Big Game more difficult. Should people not have pointed that out?
Wright has a decent point about Josh Allen, who is up-and-down and unpredictable and nowhere near warranting discussion alongside the league's elite arms as Terry Bradshaw did. Yet. But, damn, the guy had a pretty good season. Can we not admit that? Can we not discuss literally anything without it becoming a perceived pea-sized slight that sticks under the mattress and upsets the princess?
Athletes wanting to contort things for bulletin-board material and motivation is natural and healthy. That doesn't mean that we need to give in to the alternate realities they create. In no world was there any meaningful resistance to the idea that the Kansas City Chiefs are a spectacular football team extremely likely to make the Super Bowl. So why do we have to pretend that today brings any type of meaningful vindication?
A great philosopher once summed up this phenomenon thusly:
The only true way to ensure no one gets the future of a sporting season wrong is to stop talking about sports altogether. It's a drastic step but that way the triumphant fanbase can simply enjoy the accomplishment instead of combing through hours and hours of television taker-y for the smallest offense.