I was reading an article the other day on the type of fans you would not like to have at Super Bowl parties.
The writer listed some pretty good ones, but he forgot about the conspiracy fan or, perhaps, I’m the only one stuck with that kind of fan.
The conspiracy fan believes the NFL is fixed in that the teams going to the Super Bowl are not destined, but predetermined.
I have a friend who is a fan like that, and he dates the conspiracy as far back as 2001, with the New England Patriots winning the Super Bowl. He also believes this is why New Orleans didn't go to the Super Bowl last year.
The conspiracy fan believes that in 2001-02, the Patriots had no business being in the Super Bowl, let alone winning it.
He doubts that is it a coincidence that after 9/11, with 2001 probably being one of the most patriotic years in United States history, the red, white and blue team wins the Super Bowl with a no-name team and a second-string quarterback.
The circumstances sounded too good to be true. He goes on to say that if you don’t think the NFL had something to do with the Patriots getting to the Super Bowl, he will respond with only two words….tuck rule.
He says that the referee wasn’t looking at the play when it was reviewed; he was looking at the rule book on how not to call this a fumble, thus making a call we had never heard before.
The conspiracy fan considers the following Super Bowl the, “We’re Sorry Super Bowl,” to all the Bucs and Raiders fans for past screw-jobs. Of course, everyone remembers the tuck rule, but the conspiracy fan reminds us that before there was the tuck, there was the “Bert Emanuel” rule.
In the 1999 NFC Championship game, the Buccaneers faced off against the eventual Super Bowl Champion St. Louis Rams. With 47 seconds left in the game, Shaun King threw a potential 11-yard completion for an apparent first down to Bert Emanuel.
The play was controversially overturned by a replay challenge saying Emanuel didn’t catch the ball, even though it was obvious he did.
The conspiracy fan really didn’t say much about Super Bowl XXXVIII between Carolina and New England….well, not until he found out that some of the guys on Carolina’s team were on steroids.
Carolina ended up three points shy of beating the Patriots in the “Performance Enhanced” Super Bowl. He thinks it no wonder it was such a great game, and that the NFL told Carolina to lose by three to represent the two linemen and the punter who originally failed the test.
He rants about how the referees seriously thought they were getting underpaid and showed the NFL how much power they had in costing the Seattle Seahawks the Super Bowl against Pittsburgh.
He rants even more about how the NFL was onto him, and that's why the NFL didn't let the New Orleans Saints go to the Super Bowl two years after Katrina.
Other conspiracy theories? The NFL orchestrated another milestone by letting two African Americans coach in the Super Bowl while letting Manning win the big one.
This year's Super Bowl has more to do with the infamous tuck rule that eventually led to the trade of Randy Moss than it does with the Patriots perfection. And ultimately, Eli Manning being in the Super Bowl is a conspiracy altogether.
See what I have to deal with?