The National Football League is full of passion driven rivalries. Among the most historic is the Vikings and Packers. Today the top rivalries include teams such as the New York Giants and Philadelphia Eagles, Ravens and Steelers, Patriots and Jets. Rivalries are what make the football games even more exciting to watch.
1. Cincinnati Bengals vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
This rivalry started when the two teams faced off in the 2005 AFC Wildcard game. Bengals QB Carson Palmer was tackled by Steelers lineman Kimo von Oelhoffen resulting in Palmer tearing his ACL. The Bengals and Steelers rivalry always brings out the best from each team.
2. Seattle Seahawks vs. Los Angeles Rams
The strongest rivalry in the NFL West would have pitted the Seahawks against the 49ers but since the departure of coach Jim Harbaugh, the team has fallen into a slump. Breeding this new rivalry between the Seahawks and Rams is the four victories the Rams have claimed over the Seahawks. The Rams’ strong defensive line has kept this rivalry alive.
3. Green Bay Packers vs. Minnesota Vikings
This is one rivalry that will never end. Packers icon Brett Favre wearing a Vikings Jersey in 2009 stirred the pot a little bit for this rivalry. Ever since 2010, Green Bay has dominated the Vikings. However that ended in Week 2, when brand new starting quarterback broke the Packers defense and won the game. This recent chain of events could lead to a new chapter in the heated rivalry. The Packers and Vikings showdown on Christmas Eve may be the deciding factor in who becomes the NFL North champion.
4. Dallas Cowboys vs. Washington Redskins
This rivalry has been heated since 1960 when the Redskins and Cowboys executives were fighting over allowing Dallas to have a franchise. The Cowboys and Redskins have earned a combined total of 8 Super Bowl titles. Both franchises have exploded on the field this year. Cowboys are a strong contender for the Superbowl and the Redskins continue to be a threat in their division.
5. Denver Broncos vs. New England Patriots
This has been a strong rivalry since 1960 but they have recently butted heads because of three people and events: Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and domination of the AFC. As of 1996, the Patriots and Broncos have won 11 out of the last 20 AFC championships. The Patriots and Broncos have fought it out in the two of the last three AFC Championship games. They will meet in Week 15 in Denver but without Peyton Manning to lead the Broncos against Tom Brady and the Patriots.
6. New York Giants vs. Philadelphia Eagles
One of the most well known rivalries involve the New York Giants vs. Philadelphia Eagles. This rivalry involves the most passionate fans in the NFL. Some games cause the fans to turn on each other as well as players getting heated on the field. This rivalry can trace its roots back to the 1978 “Miracle at the Meadowlands” game and the two teams continue to add chapters. Now Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz is hoping to continue the rivalry as he is currently undefeated as an NFL starter.
The book has not closed on the 2016, leaving fans to wonder what the next great rivalry will be. The 2016 season may be the last season for star players such as Tom Brady and Adrian Peterson.