There used to be three certainties in life: Death, taxes and the quarterback of the team hosting that year’s Super Bowl suffering a torn ACL.
Regarding the Super Bowl host team, it wasn’t always a torn ACL for the starting quarterback. No, it could be anything from the host team getting caught up in a bounty scandal, to being the 1970s/1980s era New Orleans Saints, to having Jerry Jones as its owner.
No matter what it was, however, it was clear that there had always been a strong curse on the organization hosting that year’s Super Bowl because few teams that “earned” that “right” even went on to experience regular-season success, let alone postseason triumphs.
When the Buccaneers, the organization that would be hosting Super Bowl LV at Raymond James Stadium, signed Tom Brady in the spring of 2020, I figured it was just a matter of time before the veteran quarterback either broke a hip (it’s hell being 40something) or was caught with some sort of defensive-signals stealing app on his smartphone.
Not only did neither of those things happen, but Brady led the Buccaneers to the postseason where they won three road games on the way to becoming the first team to play a Super Bowl in its home venue.
As for the matchup against the Chiefs, the only thing that appeared to be cursed was a Kansas City offensive line that forced Patrick Mahomes to run around for nearly 500 yards, as he spent the entire game scrambling for his life and/or being sacked wicked hard.
Not only did the Buccaneers win, but they won convincingly.
Surely, this couldn’t happen for a second-straight season, though, right?
I certainly had my doubts last offseason when the Rams, the organization that would be hosting Super Bowl LVI at SoFi Stadium, traded for Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford. Stafford and the Rams seemed to be doing okay for themselves until they added a few more players mid-season, including dive receiver, Odell Beckham. Los Angeles struggled to find its footing late in the year before clinching the NFC West and number four seed. Surely, though, with Beckham and his rampant toxicity, along with Stafford and his failure to ever do anything, along with Brady and as a roadblock in the postseason, there was no way Los Angeles could win three playoff games and make it back to its home digs for the Super Bowl.
It actually happened. The Rams won three playoff games and got past Tom Brady in the process. Stafford looks like a winner. OBJ looks like a great teammate. The Rams are playing at home in the Super Bowl (even if they’re the designated road team).
Will this now become the new normal? Will the competition committee, one prone to crazy overreactions in the face of public outrage, try to do something to assure this doesn’t happen again?
I hope not. After all, the Super Bowl is in the desert next year, which means the Arizona Cardinals now have a great chance of making it.
After that, it's the Raiders home stadium in Las Vegas.
If this curse is truly over, we'll find out soon enough.