The '60s Packers, the '70s Steelers, the '80s 49ers, the '90s Cowboys, and the 2000s Patriots: Those are the NFL's dynasties. These are the teams that won several championships over a specific range of time, and did so consistently. The Steelers won four rings in six years, and the latter two dynasties each won three rings in a shocking four-year span.
But what about the teams that were great, possibly even dominant, but just weren't considered a dynasty? These are the teams that may have won just two, maybe one Super Bowl, or perhaps they didn't even win a championship, but they displayed dominance over a period of time.
These teams are the ALMOST dynasties of the NFL.
The Eagles of the new millennium nearly dominated their conference in stretches. During the decade, minus one year (2009), they went to the playoffs seven times in a nine-year span and made five trips to the NFC Championship game, including a trip to Super Bowl XXXIX. They also won their division five times.
The Rams of the '70s won an astonishing seven straight division titles. They played in five conference championship games and did manage to reach Super Bowl XIX. That run of greatness gives them the nine spot in this countdown.
During a four-year stretch, the Denver Broncos were able to reach three Super Bowls, winning three division titles as well. Despite being slaughtered in each and every bowl, they still showed great dominance over the Browns—err, I mean their conference—in that stretch.
During this stretch, John Madden, Ken Stabler, and their Raiders won six division titles and made a run to an incredible six AFC championship games. They did manage to win it all in 1976 but were never able to claim a second, let alone third, title, and that puts them at seven on the list.
In this decade the Niners were a powerhouse and may have won several Super Bowls had it not been for the Packers or Cowboys. In the end, though, they won their division six times, played in five NFC Championship games, and won the Super Bowl in 1995.
Under the leadership of Bud Grant and Fran Tarkenton, this team managed to win eight division titles and have the MVP of the league in '71 and '75. They appeared in three Super Bowls in a four-year span, but like the Broncos, they lost all of them.
Often called the other team of the '80s, they appeared in three Super Bowls and won two. They also reached four conference championships. They won four division titles, but it's the championships that put them ahead of other teams on this list.
Many people forget that the Dolphins went to three straight Super Bowls from '71 to '73. They won the latter two, and of course the '72 team was a perfect 17-0. They managed to win their division every year during this span, and had they beaten the Cowboys in Super Bowl VI, they would've been the only team to win three straight Super Bowls—but then again, they wouldn't be on this countdown.
Yet another team that failed to shake the shadow of the Steelers. This team came the closest to being a dynasty. During the decade they won seven division titles and appeared in an unprecedented seven Conference Championship games. They managed to win two Super Bowls, but they were far too spread out to claim the top spot.
We all know the story. They were the only team in NFL history to go to four consecutive Super Bowls, and one of the only teams in sports history to go to four consecutive of ANYTHING. The problem is, they lost each and every time they went.
It's a pity, but in that span they did manage to win three division titles, and their record during those four years was 58-19. Pretty amazing, isn't it?