There was a great deal of talk of dynasties after the New England Patriots defeated the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday by a final score of 13–3 and secured their 6th championship since 2000. A mark like this triggered wide-spread praise and even some groans from fans of other teams who wanted to see a change at the top. A dynasty like New England’s is impressive, but what about our own dynasty here in Durham?
The Bulls have six championships of their own over the past 18 years and have done it with a revolving door of players. While the Patriots have had consistency in their personnel, with Tom Brady earning all three of the team’s MVP’s and Bill Belichick at the helm for all 18 seasons, the Bulls have found ways to win and defy the odds with four coaches and completely new rosters almost every season. In fact, the Bulls have 4 MVP’s over that span and have also played in 10 finals versus New England’s nine.
So where does the New England Patriots dynasty stack up against the Durham Bulls? While the Patriots have more division titles (16 versus 12 for the Bulls), Durham has been able to breed success despite ever-changing situations from the parent club in Tampa Bay, to the on field product. While Brady and the Patriots show little sign of slowing down, the Bulls bring championship energy every season.
The Bulls have won back-to-back titles two times in the past 18 years, while the Patriots have accomplished this feat just once. In addition, the Bulls reached the Governors’ Cup Finals four years in a row from 2007–10, while New England has only reached the Super Bowl three times in a row. Finally, in 2019 the Bulls are looking to accomplish another feat that New England never has: winning a championship three seasons in a row.
Bottom line: if the Patriots want to become the greatest dynasty of the 21st century, they first need to keep pace with the Durham Bulls.