In honor of the beginning of the NFL season and because I have a bizarre need to compare things that are in no way similar to each other. I give you a list of Christian denominations and their corresponding NFL team.
Roman Catholic – Chicago Bears
They've been around since the beginning and their history is filled with both conquests and venerated saints like George Halas, Dick Butkus and Gale Sayers. However, in recent years they've often been on the defensive leading to middle of the road status. Finally, Mike Ditka is Pope John Paul II and Walter Payton is Mother Teresa.
Episcopalian/Anglican – Oakland Raiders
Historically, a rebellious group of upstarts from the insurgent AFL that has tamed over time as it's come to find more mainstream success. Still prone to bouts of rebellious behavior that come across more weird than iconoclastic in the modern context. You have a legion of hardcore fans that refuse to leave even if your behavior seems occasionally bizarre. Al Davis is King Henry VIII and John Madden is N.T. Wright.
Presbyterian – New York Giants
You continue to have success in spite of the fact that it's entirely unclear why you've been successful in the first place. You base a lot of your work on your ability to amount a worthwhile defense and the fact that your success must simply be preordained. You're led by an angry man who will become lovable in historical context (Tom Coughlin and John Calvin).
Methodist – Kansas City Chiefs
You spent most of my childhood trying to redefine that gray area between average and slightly above average. A lot of your historical cache comes from simply existing and not embarassing yourself. Your fans are also fiercely loyal and very underrated.
Lutheran – Indianapolis Colts
Your relevance is based upon the prolific production of a bygone hero who led you out of the metaphorical wilderness and into the historical spotlight. Out of deference to the bygone hero, people are still paying serious attention to you, but no one is completely sure why. Peyton Manning is Martin Luther.
United Churches of Christ – Miami Dolphins
A franchise with a lot of historical significance including the only unbeaten season in NFL history and the crazy success of Dan Marino. The franchise's status has been undermined in recent years through a combination of identity crisis and wondering whether or not anyone actually cares.
Church of Christ – Cleveland Browns
You like to think that you have a long and storied history, but in truth your franchise began in 1999. A loyal fan base sticks beside you through thick and thin. Often characterized by an inability to find adequate leadership. Examples of inadequate leadership include Tim Couch, Kelly Holcomb, Derek Anderson, Brady Quinn, Colt McCoy, and probably Brandon Weedon.
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