New England Patriots Dynasty Creating Fatigue for Super Bowl Viewers


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If you’re a New England Patriots fan, then you are currently living in a golden age that doesn’t show any sign of ceasing any time soon. However, if you follow any of the other 31 NFL teams, and you read this website, you’ve almost certainly grown fatigued of the Patriots by this point.

The Pats will face off against the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII on Sunday, marking their fourth trip in the last five years and 10th in the last 17. Under the ownership of Bob Kraft, the New England Patriots have won 18 division titles, 10 conference titles, and five Super Bowl championships – more than any other team over the last 25 years.

While that is dominance and dynasty in the purest sense of those words, they are certainly no lock to win their sixth Super Bowl trophy on Sunday. They lost the big game last year and needed a miracle comeback for the ages to emerge victorious two years ago. The patriots were the biggest underdog entering into the conference finals and as we can see now in the following tracker they are now the favorites to win the championship with odds at -145. Although they are now favored in this game, it’s only by a very slim margin of -2.5 points at most sports books, and they opened the week as underdogs in nearly every casino.

Although the handicappers anticipate a closely contested game, it’s not helping to drum up interest in watching it. At least not according to a recent survey conducted by Remington Research Group. Their poll, of 2,321 registered voters nationwide, found that nearly half of Americans are uninterested in this matchup between the Los Angeles Rams and the New England Patriots. 

One-in-three Americans say they will be rooting for the Los Angeles Rams this Sunday, while 20% say they will be rooting for the Patriots. 44% of respondents say they do not care who wins.

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 Kraft went on the national morning show of the network that is broadcasting Super Bowl 53, and his segment lacked news value. 

He was asked if Patriots Coach Bill Belichick is definitely coming back next year, a question that hasn’t really been in doubt much, and thus didn’t really need to be posed.

“He loves what he does. He’s so good at it,” Kraft responded to the query.

“We’ve created an environment that he can work to the best of his abilities, so I’m quite confident he’ll be back.”

All in all, the segment seemed like nothing more than an overt attempt to try and boost ratings, by having a powerful NFL figure talk, but not say anything except cliches and platitudes.

“It’s such a thrill to be here … 17 years ago to the day on Sunday, we were the biggest underdogs in the history of the Super Bowl,” Kraft added.… “It was just a thrilling moment to win our first Super Bowl and start this fun that’s been fantastic for our fans.”

 Yes, for the New England Patriots owner, team, staff and fans, it has indeed been fantastic. For the rest of America though, it’s been a bit meh and mundane. And this could seen ratings take a tumble, although ratings may fall for reasons outside America having Patriots fatigue.

This year’s Super Bowl will probably see lower ratings than last year, says Ball State’s Dom Caristi, a telecommunications professor.

“People typically think that the best thing for Super Bowl ratings is to involve the largest cities, which means a New York versus Los Angeles game would be the best, but that just isn’t the case. The Los Angeles Rams (who moved to the city from St. Louis recently) really lack the tradition – and the fan base – that many smaller markets would bring to the game.

“When the (Philadelphia) Eagles payed last year, they brought a much more active fan base than Los Angeles will.”

“As big as Los Angeles and Boston are, they still aren’t the majority of the country. A lot of viewers who would characterize themselves as NFL fans believe that the teams that deserved to be in the big game were denied their opportunity by the referees, which could result in disgruntled fans not watching the game.”

“There’s even talk in New Orleans about a boycott. That city is smaller than Boston or L.A. so if the whole city turned off the game it would have a minor effect. But, how many fans across the country also believe New Orleans and/or Kansas City should have made it to the game?

“More program sources means more places for people to watch something other than the game. There have always been other channels to watch, but the increasing number of streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu make it possible for people to spend Sunday night watching almost anything but the game.”

“One other factor to consider is that there are some people who really do watch the game for the commercials. This year, people who want to are able to see many more of the Super Bowl commercials online in advance of the game. As crazy as it may sound, that’s one factor in reducing the number of people who will see the Super Bowl as ‘must see” TV.”

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for NBC and Chicago, regularly appears as a guest pundit on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation

He also contributes sociopolitical essays to Chicago NowFollow him on Twitter and Instagram. The content of his cat’s Instagram account is unquestionably superior to his.

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