The passing of the torch in the NFL

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The passing of the torch in the NFL

The Patriots, celebrating their 6th ring last year, might have won their last championship as new teams challenge their reign.

The Patriots, celebrating their 6th ring last year, might have won their last championship as new teams challenge their reign.

Will Sharis

The Patriots, celebrating their 6th ring last year, might have won their last championship as new teams challenge their reign.

Will Sharis

Will Sharis

The Patriots, celebrating their 6th ring last year, might have won their last championship as new teams challenge their reign.

Will Sharis, Copy Editor

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The old faces of the NFL have finally passed the torch onto the newest generations of coaches and players as the NFL playoffs are filled with new faces.

Wild Card weekend of the NFL playoffs has always been filled with drama and upset, but this year was different. This year America saw some of the biggest names and faces of football lose to teams with younger and less popular players.

Students at Pleasant Valley are no strangers to the drama within Wild Card weekend. Senior Aditya Desai said, “The NFL, in its centennial year season, is seeing the once dominant players and teams of recent memory supplanted in the playoffs by up-in-coming stars of tomorrow.”

The ageless Tom Brady and Bill Belchick of the Patriots, the heads of the dynasty with six rings for nearly two decades, played the Tennessee Titans with Derrick Henry at home and lost. The New Orleans Saints with Drew Brees at the helm got shut down by the visiting Vikings’ defense.

Two teams, icons of twenty-first century NFL, were eliminated in shocking fashion in the first week of playoffs by the last seeds in the playoffs. The Patriots, in particular, had never played in the first round of the playoffs this decade as they earned the coveted first or second seed bye week every previous year. 

These games summed up the feeling building throughout the regular season. The AFC divisional round has either quarterbacks on their rookie contracts, and in the case of Tannehill, a quarterback written off as mediocre at best only a season ago.

The NFC might have more established quarterbacks with the likes of Russel Wilson and Aaron Rodgers, but the teams and coaches around them are filled with new potential and rising stars that have brought them to this point in the playoffs.

Sophomore Mac Carr said, “Rookies like DK Metcalf and Nick Bosa are giving an entire new feel to some of the classic teams that have reinvented themselves in the NFC.” Carr went on the say,”You can see that too in AFC with Lamar Jackson and Derrick Henry dominating in their respective positions.”

While the world has probably not seen the last of the enduring Tom Brady and Drew Brees, the new generation in the NFL has started to take over the league, giving the NFL a new and exciting feel that’s different from recent years past.