Tony Dungy says Pats are "probably not" greatest dynasty ever
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The Patriots are in their eighth Super Bowl in the past 17 years, and are looking to claim a league-record sixth title. Since 2001, they've smashed nearly every team record imaginable--their point differential is +2,534, best in the league by just under 1,200 points. Outside of Peyton Manning, Tom Brady now has more playoff wins than any other QB in NFL history has playoff starts. The dynasty has lasted for 17 years, weathering dozens of key player departures, coaching staff overhauls, and much-maligned cheating allegations. Yet according to Tony Dungy, it's still not the greatest dynasty of all time.
In Dungy's mind, that conspicuous honor belongs to the Cleveland Browns of the 1950s. Via MassLive:
Well, you'd have to look at the longevity," Dungy said during Tuesday's media availability at the Mall of America. "...In the 50s it was Otto Graham and the Browns and they did it for a decade, and then Packers did it for a decade, and then Dallas, and the 49ers were close in terms of doing it with two different groups -- coach (Bill) Walsh passed it along to George Seifert. But to stay from 2001 to 2017, to maintain the excellence for 17 years, it's pretty amazing. Would you say it's better than the Browns in the 50s? Probably not, but to do it for that long period of time, it's pretty incredible.
To his credit, Dungy did acknowledge how "incredible" New England's run of success has been. However, the Patriots and Browns dynasties are so far apart it's almost impossible to make a comparison--Cleveland dominated a 13-team NFL in the early '50s, while New England has had to fight off 31 other teams and manage the salary cap to continue to win. The Browns were certainly the team of the decade, and deserve to be mentioned among the most successful runs of all time--but at this point, the Pats have fairly clearly surpassed all other dynasties in NFL history.