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Browns Browns Archive Other Things That Don't Count Because They Happened Before We Called It "The Super Bowl"
Written by Jonathan Knight

Jonathan Knight

brownsdynastybanner largeStop me if you’ve heard this one - the Browns are one of just four NFL franchises that have never played in a Super Bowl.

I’m willing to bet my next 401k contribution that whenever you’ve heard that statement, you’ve countered by trying to explain that the Browns have indeed won four NFL championships - the title game simply wasn’t called the “Super Bowl” at the time.

And no doubt whoever you were talking to snickered and rolled his eyes, labeling you a warped sociopath disturbingly out of touch with reality.

Weary after a quarter-century of hissing at anyone who’s pompously made this statement, I’ve come to a game-changing conclusion. 

They’re right.

The pre-Super Bowl argument - generally made by Bengals and Steelers fans - is rock-solid.

Because it wasn’t called the “Super Bowl” at the time, the Browns’ quartet of NFL titles should be vacated - as should the achievement of any NFL team or player prior to the creation of Go-Go Boots.

After all, to take pride in a championship season that happened in a time when Chunky wasn’t the official soup of the NFL is like bragging about having owned prime Manhattan real estate in the 13th century.

Thus, the Atlanta Falcons, who stumbled backward into one title-game appearance only to be promptly emasculated, clearly have a more respected overall history than the Browns. As do the other nine teams that have reached that point but never finished the job.

That’s because they embarrassed themselves in the “Super Bowl,” not the “Leather Helmet Derby” or whatever they used to call it back when “Congress” was spelled with an “f.”

Turns out, Browns fans have been wrong all these years. But, since a lot of us were born before the first Super Bowl was played, that’s understandable. Basically everything from that geologic period in history is both defective and perverted.

And that got me thinking - why stop with football? Since time didn’t begin until Super Bowl I in 1967, and anything that happened before the Super Bowl doesn’t count, shouldn’t we also apply this mentality to everything else, just to keep things consistent?

So in that spirit, here’s a partial list of other things that shouldn’t be recognized because they occurred before the NFL title game was called the “Super Bowl”:


The Beatles: Iconic band who defined a generation of music? Or a group of no-talent British ruffians who got famous because the haircut hadn’t been created yet?

Either way, we can all agree they were significantly less gifted than Ace of Base.


A Charlie Brown Christmas: Though this is an enduring and endearing holiday tradition, it premiered in 1965 - a time period when people would die if they sneezed too hard. 

Therefore, it is hopelessly outdated and should be removed from our consciousness.

As should Christmas itself, I suppose...


The Kennedy Assassination: When three shots rang out in Dealey Plaza on November 22, 1963, it was thought to be a defining moment in history, perhaps the most tragic American event of the 20th century.

Alas, millions of Americans who wept for their fallen president that day will be relieved to learn that it never actually happened. ESPN can’t show digital-quality, slow-motion highlights and have Keyshawn Johnson provide monosyllabic analysis.

Consequently, it’s not real.


The Polio Vaccine: Jonas Salk is overrated. Can any medical breakthrough that occurred before the vaguely phallic Vince Lombardi trophy was designed actually be considered beneficial to society?

Besides, diseases were easy to cure before the West Coast Offense came along.


The Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue: We often think of the unapologetic packaging of sex as a modern breakthrough, which is why we understand and appreciate it.

As it turns out, SI first started slapping luscious breasts on its cover in 1964, right before women earned the right to vote. Thus, it’s archaic and forgettable.

(’s only two weeks until this year’s comes out!)


19 of the New York Yankees’ World Championships: Since much of the pre-Super Bowl argument stems from a New York mentality, no doubt the reasonable denizens of the Big Apple will agree with this one.

Sure, the Yankees put together two separate, unmatchable dynasties, but they did it before the the designated hitter, the wild card, and anabolic steroids finally brought baseball into its modern and flawless golden age.


The Non-Bloated Elvis: Why does everybody remember Elvis Presley so fondly? He was just a fat white dude in sequined pajamas who ate jelly donuts and died on the toilet.

It’s not like he was the dashing prince of American pop culture and the King of Rock ‘n Roll who charted 18 No. 1 songs and defined a generation.

Or maybe he was, but that was before it was called the Super Bowl, so it doesn’t count.


Disneyland: The happiest place on Earth? Please. It opened in 1955 - happiness hadn’t been invented yet. 


Marilyn Monroe: Beautiful, iconic sex symbol? Nope. Old like your grandma.On the other hand, Lindsay Lohan - born the same year William “The Refrigerator” Perry blessed the Super Bowl with his corpulence - now there’s a classy dame.


World War II: Anyone else tired of old people always making such a big deal about this one? All the films of it are black-and-white and grainy and they didn’t even have to wear facemasks when they stormed the beach at Normandy.



Mad Men: Hold on, you may be saying. The four-time Emmy winner for Best Drama didn’t premiere until 2007 - the same year the New England Patriots went 16-0. So it’s safe, right?

Yes, but consider its subject matter: a New York ad agency in the early and mid-1960s. if there were even “commercials” back then. People were still making their own clothes  out of potato skins and riding horses to public hangings.


John Glenn: Considering he was a longtime politician who never texted anyone pictures of his own penis, odds are you’ve never heard of him anyway. But since he did whatever he did to make himself famous before Al Davis had learned how to be an acerbic malcontent, it must have been completely irrelevant.

Come to think of it, what did John Glenn actually do? Built a model rocket or something, right?


Hawaii: This one’s tough to let go of because of its awesomeness: perfect weather, hula girls, majestic scenery, Lost.

But Hawaii’s major design flaw was being admitted to the Union eight years too early. Hence, its memory must be eradicated.

The Pro Bowl, on the other hand, is modern enough to keep with us.


Brown vs. the Board of Education: Some would call school integration one of the milestone American legal achievements of the 20th century and worthy of recognition even today.

Maybe if it had happened 20 years later, I could be on board with that. Instead, Brown vs. Board of Education should be dropped somewhere beneath the Snuggie in the overall ranking of things we respect.


Batman: I know, I know. With the film resurgence led by Christian Bale and Christopher Nolan, we’d like to think that the Dark Knight is kick-ass enough to be embraced for generations to come.

Turns out, no. The Caped Crusader first hit comic book racks in 1939, the year the last dinosaur died.


Steve Jobs: Some would call him the Thomas Edison of the 21st century, expanding our lives with wonders such as personal computers, the iPod, and Pixar.

Sadly, the late Mr. Jobs - like Disneyland and carbon dioxide - was born in 1955. Thus, following the Fruit of the Poisonous Tree legal principle - anything he created must be categorically dismissed.

(Those of you reading this on a MacBook or iPhone, please discard it now.)


No doubt there are many more things in today’s society we appreciate that we shouldn’t because they’re just too old.

And I’m sure there are some who still insist that NFL titles captured before the Super Bowl era are perfectly valid and worthy of respect.

Nonsense. I recommend burning these heathenish charlatans at the stake the way the grandparents of modern-day Patriots fans did in Salem, Massachusetts. 

But of course I won’t. For that was before it was called the Super Bowl.

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