Let’s throw a made up statistic out there. 31 out of every 32 NFL fans are tired of watching the New England Patriots in the Superbowl for the past 3 years. The statistic may not be real, but the sentiment most assuredly is. For the past two decades, Tom Brady, Bill Belichick, and Robert Kraft have dominated the AFC all season, and then went 6-3 in the biggest sporting event in North America. Dominance like that doesn’t come easy, and even if it irritates just about everyone else in the NFL, it goes without saying that it deserves respect. The same goes for the Don Shula era Dolphins, the 1967-1991 Raiders, the 1966-1985 Cowboys, and many more. But wouldn’t we all like to see our teams succeed like that? It may be awful to watch, but wouldn’t you feel differently if it were your team on that pedestal? If so, you’re in luck, because here’s a guide of what you need for your team in order to build a successful dynasty.
In The Front Office
Every fan wants to win. The “This Is Our Year” mentality is great if it really is your year, but at some point you have to step back and admit that you aren’t ready, and that your team doesn’t deserve to win the Superbowl. That’s where a good front office comes in. The fact that you need good people running the organization for it to succeed in common knowledge. Risk takers, people who know when to pull the trigger and, more importantly, when not to. Many teams continue to go through the cycle of hiring the flashiest new coaches and managers, then firing them after only 1 or 2 years, then repeating. Your organization needs to break that cycle, and learn that embracing the rebuild comes before success. The grit that it takes to suffer for a few years until it is time to win is rare, and it’s a crucial ingredient that’s needed in the front office in order to foster long term success.
On The Sidelines
Coaches are a lot more than men standing on the sideline telling receivers to throw it on a trick play. Their duties off the field are just as important, if not more so, than just calling plays and clapping (looking at you, Jason Garrett). The best coaches in the history of the game aren’t necessarily the trickiest, nor the craftiest, nor those most capable of bamboozling their opponents. Not to say that trick plays and bamboozlability (stick with it) aren’t important, but fostering good habits in practice and teaching players in the film room is where a good coach becomes a great coach. Understandably, these things take time, and any organization that is worth its salt knows about being patient (See ‘In The Front Office’). Coaches need to foster a team mentality as well, teach selfless play and encourage unit cohesion. These things should be highly ranked on any dynasty-quality coaches ‘it’ list.
On The Field
The Patrick Mahomes’ of the world are all well and good, but they’re nothing until they show their consistent worth. Drew Brees is a Hall of Famer not because he holds some records (though they do help) but because he has proven time and time again that he deserves to be there. Guys like Joe Thomas, Larry Fitzgerald, Ed Reed and others will always be the cornerstones of a team, and when controversy strikes, or retirements, trades, free agency, or anything else; having guys like that whom you can build around will make every bit of difference. Star players come and go, and journeymen can put up career years on a half dozen teams, but consistency above all else is the rule. A few players like that and you’re well on your way to a big shiny Super Bowl ring.