Boston vs. Philadelphia: A tale of two cities
Boston and Philadelphia have a long sporting history. Celtics-76ers was one of the NBA's biggest rivalries in the 1960s, '70s and '80s, and -- given the youth and talent on both teams -- may soon become one again. The Bruins and Flyers were blood enemies in the 1970s. And if you go back aways, the Red Sox spoiled the Phillies' first trip to the World Series. (Granted, Woodrow Wilson was president at the time and radio -- not television, but radio -- hadn't been invented yet.)
But in football, not so much.
Oh, sure, the Patriots beat the Eagles in the 2004 Super Bowl. But that was the least memorable of the five New England championships -- it was the only one that didn't go down to the last play(s) -- and it's been forgotten in the excitement of Adam Vinatieri's last-second field goals, Malcolm Butler's interception, and The Great Comeback.
Now they meet again. Will be the start of a new rivalry?
One thing's for sure: Philly's got a way to go to catch up to Boston in sheer numbers . . .
. . . although when it comes to 2017 football numbers, these two foes couldn't be much more even.
One element in the Pats' favor: Teams attempting to repeat as Super Bowl champions are generally successful. (And New England has done it before.)
And another: Teams that win the first Super Bowl meeting usually win the rematch.
And a third: The Eagles are on the list of most appearances in the Super Bowl without a victory. (Granted, it's not a big list.)
But here's one in the Eagles' favor: Based on past history, there's little indication this game won't be another close one. And if it's up for grabs at the end, you never know.