Bill Belichick

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Pioli left for the Kansas City Chiefs after the 2009 season. The Patriots went 5–11 in the 2000 regular season and missed the playoffs. To date, this is Belichick's only losing season with the Patriots, and also the only year in which Tom Brady did not start at quarterback in any regular season games. However, Belichick won 11 games with Matt Cassel in 2008 after Brady suffered a season-ending injury in week 1. In 2001, the Patriots went 11–5 in the regular season, and defeated the Oakland Raiders (in the "Tuck Rule Game") and Pittsburgh Steelers on the way to the Super Bowl. In Super Bowl XXXVI, Belichick's defense held the St.

Miami Dolphins

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With the rise of Tom Brady and the Patriots during the 2000s and the retirements of Kelly and Dolphins great Dan Marino, the Bills-Dolphins rivalry has faded in relevance, but remains somewhat intense to this day. Some former Dolphins have gone to play for the Bills as well, most notably Dan Carpenter, Chris Hogan, and Charles Clay. The Dolphins dominated the New England Patriots during the 1970s and the 1990s, but there were some notable moments as well, including a game now known as the Snowplow Game. Fortunes changed when Tom Brady became the franchise quarterback for the Patriots, and since then, the Patriots have virtually dominated the AFC, especially the AFC East.

Pro Bowl

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For example, in 2010, Baltimore Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs admitted voting for Ryan Fitzpatrick (then the backup quarterback of the Buffalo Bills) over eventual league most valuable player Tom Brady not because he thought Fitzpatrick was the better player but as a vote of disrespect toward Brady's team, the New England Patriots. Some players have had a surprisingly small number of Pro Bowl selections despite distinguished careers. Hall of Fame running back John Riggins was selected only once in his career from 1971 to 1985.

Indianapolis Colts

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The Colts won their first two playoff games against the Kansas City Chiefs and the Baltimore Ravens to return to the AFC Championship Game for the first time since the 2003 playoffs, where they faced their rivals, the New England Patriots. In a classic game, the Colts overcame a 21–3 first half deficit to win the game 38–34 and earned a trip to Super Bowl XLI, the franchise's first Super Bowl appearance since 1970 and for the first as Indianapolis. The Colts faced the Chicago Bears in the Super Bowl, winning the game 29–17 and giving Manning, Polian, Irsay, and Dungy, as well as the city of Indianapolis, their first Super Bowl title.

Super Bowl LII

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This was the second time that a Super Bowl was played in Minneapolis, the northernmost city to ever host the event, after Super Bowl XXVI at the Metrodome during the 1991 season, and the sixth Super Bowl held in a cold-weather city. New England finished the regular season with an AFC-best 13–3 record, then extended their record Super Bowl appearances to ten, their third in four years, and their eighth under the leadership of head coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady.

Super Bowl LIII

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This would be a rematch of Super Bowl XXXVI when the Rams were based in St. Louis. Only one player, Patriots starting quarterback Tom Brady, remains on either roster from that contest. Bill Belichick, the Patriots' head coach in that contest, also remains in that position. Super Bowl LIII featured record setting age differences between rival coaches and quarterbacks, pitting the 41-year old Tom Brady against the 24-year old Jared Goff, as well as the 66-year old Bill Belichick against 33-year old Sean McVay.

2015 NFL season

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The Denver Broncos became the fourth team to appear in eight Super Bowls, joining the Dallas Cowboys, New England Patriots and Pittsburgh Steelers. Denver Broncos' head coach Gary Kubiak became the first person in NFL history to reach a Super Bowl as both a player and a head coach with the same franchise. Kubiak was John Elway's backup quarterback on the Broncos from 1983 to 1991 and saw playing time in both Super Bowl XXI and Super Bowl XXIV. With Carolina Panthers' head coach Ron Rivera having previously played as a linebacker for the Chicago Bears in Super Bowl XX, this game was the first ever Super Bowl in which both head coaches had formerly played in a Super Bowl themselves.

American Football Conference

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The current AFC champions are the New England Patriots, who defeated the Kansas City Chiefs in the 2018 AFC Championship Game. Since 2002, like the NFC, the AFC has 16 teams, organized into four divisions each with four teams: East, North, South and West. This chart of the 2018 season standings displays an application of the NFL scheduling formula. The Patriots in 2018 (highlighted in green) finished in first place in the AFC East.

American Football League

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The Kansas City Chiefs were the first Super Bowl champion to win two road playoff games and the first wildcard team to win the Super Bowl, although the term "wildcard" was coined by the media, and not used officially until several years later. Italics – Super Bowl Appearance, Bold – Super Bowl Victory The AFL did not play an All-Star game after its first season in 1960, but did stage All-Star games for the 1961 through 1969 seasons. All-Star teams from the Eastern and Western divisions played each other after every season except 1965. That season, the league champion Buffalo Bills played all-stars from the other teams.

Super Bowl XLIX

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The league then announced on October 11, 2011, that University of Phoenix Stadium will host Super Bowl XLIX. This is the second Super Bowl contested at University of Phoenix Stadium, which hosted Super Bowl XLII in February 2008, and the third Super Bowl played in the Phoenix area, as Super Bowl XXX was held at Sun Devil Stadium in nearby Tempe in January 1996. The New England Patriots had a rough start to their 2014 season, starting the season with a 2–2 record and hitting a low point with a humiliating 41–14 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in week four. By this point, the Patriots faced heavy criticism in the media, especially quarterback Tom Brady.

Dallas Cowboys

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The franchise has made it to the Super Bowl eight times, tied with the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Denver Broncos for second most Super Bowl appearances in history, just behind the New England Patriots record ten Super Bowl appearances. This has also corresponded to eight NFC championships, most in the NFC. The Cowboys have won five of those Super Bowl appearances, tying them with their NFC rivals, the San Francisco 49ers, and the AFC's Patriots; all three are second to Pittsburgh's record six Super Bowl championships. The Cowboys are the only NFL team to record 20 straight winning seasons (1966–85), in which they missed the playoffs only twice (1974 and 1984).

San Francisco 49ers

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During the third week matchup between the 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs, Jimmy Garoppolo tore his ACL, and was ruled out for the rest of the 2018 season. The 49ers have won five Super Bowls, their first three under Bill Walsh. Walsh retired after winning his third in 1988, but first year head coach George Seifert did not miss a beat, winning the Super Bowl in his first year in 1989. He would also win one more in 1994.

Super Bowl XLVI

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Super Bowl XLVI was an American football game between the National Football Conference (NFC) champion New York Giants and the American Football Conference (AFC) champion New England Patriots to decide the National Football League (NFL) champion for the 2011 season. The Giants defeated the Patriots by the score of 21–17. The game was played on February 5, 2012 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, the first time that the Super Bowl was played in Indiana. In addition to winning their fourth Super Bowl in team history, the Giants set a new record for the lowest regular season record (9–7, win percentage of 56.3%) by a Super Bowl champion.

AFC Championship Game

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Current AFC teams which have never won a Conference Championship: Cleveland Browns (0–3), Houston Texans (0–0), Jacksonville Jaguars (0–3), New York Jets (0–4) and Kansas City Chiefs (0–1). Longest drought without appearing in an AFC Championship Game: 29 years**; Cincinnati Bengals (last appearance – 1988). Longest drought without an AFC Championship: 48 years**: New York Jets, and Kansas City Chiefs. Highest attendance: 91,445; Los Angeles Raiders vs. Seattle Seahawks in Los Angeles on January 8, 1984 (1983). Overtime games:. 1986 Denver Broncos 23 Cleveland Browns 20. 2018 New England Patriots 37 Kansas City Chiefs 31. Tied for Conference Championship record.

Super Bowl XLII

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They joined the Green Bay Packers (who won Super Bowl I against the Kansas City Chiefs), the Kansas City Chiefs (who won Super Bowl IV against the Minnesota Vikings) and the Pittsburgh Steelers (who won Super Bowl XL against the Seattle Seahawks) in accomplishing this feat. However, Green Bay had to win two games, Kansas City three, and Pittsburgh and the Giants, four, in order to accomplish this. Since, the Green Bay Packers accomplished it in 2010 by winning three road playoff games en route to their Super Bowl XLV victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers. However, the Packers accomplished this feat as a sixth seed, while the Giants accomplished this as a fifth seed.