Overhyped NFL Teams That Crushed Their Fans’ Dreams

Darren - November 18, 2022

Overhyped NFL Teams That Crushed Their Fans’ Dreams

Darren - November 18, 2022

Cleveland Browns – 1990

The Browns were a strong outfit throughout the 1980s but they didn’t start the new decade well at all. Bernie Kosar was a reliable presence at quarterback until 1990. Then he became an interception machine as his form suffered a stark decline. There’s no accounting for how quickly a signal-caller can deteriorate but it was a nail in the Browns’ coffin.

Sports Illustrated

Meanwhile, they had a porous defense that saw them concede 58 points in a single game. In the end, they finished the season with a harrowing 3-13 record after high expectations. The perennial AFC contenders couldn’t make it to the postseason and eventually left the city for a few years (via Andscape).

San Diego Union-Tribune

Las Vegas Raiders – 2022

Have there ever been more hyped NFL teams than in the 2022 edition of the AFC West? The Raiders carried a lot of expectations into the new season under new head coach Josh McDaniels. They signed a genuine superstar in Davante Adams as they reunited him with his former Fresno State teammate Derek Carr.

San Diego Union-Tribune

Many people believed that the Raiders would take the next step and potentially make the postseason. However, they had a dismal start to the season with just two wins in their first nine games. This left McDaniels fighting for his future and infuriated their fanbase after dreams of glory (via DraftKings Nation).

CBS Sports

Philadelphia Eagles – 2020

The Eagles enjoyed a fairytale in 2017 as they won the Super Bowl against the odds. Nobody would have expected Nick Foles to be a Super Bowl MVP but that’s what happened after the backup stepped up. Carson Wentz returned from injury and took back the starting role the following season (via NBC Sports).

Penn Live

Wentz played well until a stress fracture put him out of action but the Eagles still gave him a contract extension. This culminated in a horrible 2020 season where the Eagles went 4-12. It’s mad that just a couple of years after their Super Bowl win they stared down the barrel. Suddenly, one of the most hyped teams in the NFL became one of the worst.

Florida Times-Union

Jacksonville Jaguars – 2021

It’s not entirely correct to say that anybone had high expectations for the Jaguars in 2021. But they expected more from the franchise than they delivered. They became one of the season’s hyped NFL teams after they drafted a generational talent in Trevor Lawrence. He was a genuine franchise quarterback with the ability to bring them to the next level.

New York Times

But they balanced out this decision by appointing Urban Meyer as their head coach. He made one chaotic choice after another before Shahid Khan pulled the trigger and fired him. The team had a terrible 3-14 record as they became the worst team in the NFL for consecutive seasons (via Prime Time Sports Talk).

Star Tribune

Minnesota Vikings – 2000

The Vikings know how to disappoint their fanbase as much as any other team but this was one of their worst moments. That’s because this was one of the most hyped NFL teams of the year. Their awesome offense saw Daunte Culpepper combine with Randy Moss and Cris Carter to light up the skies (via Bleacher Report).


Meanwhile, Robert Smith had a brilliant regular season as he helped them plot their route to the Super Bowl. Unfortunately, Minnesota never made it to the showpiece event because they fell short in the NFC Championship. In the end, the Giants blew them away 41-0 and the Vikings failed to make the playoffs again for four more seasons.

Miami Dolphins

Miami Dolphins – 1995

Don Shula decided that he wanted to depart Miami with a bang after the 1995 season. He knew that this was his last year in charge of the franchise and pushed the front office to spend a lot of money. They invested heavily in the roster and used a lot of cap space to assemble a dream team.

CBS Sports

The idea was to give Dan Marino the weapons he required to fire the franchise to Super Bowl glory. However, after a 4-0 start, they stumbled their way into the postseason like a drunk in a restroom. Then they crashed out immediately against the Bills in the most disappointing manner (via NBC Miami).


Washington Redskins – 2000

Dan Snyder poured a lot of money into the Redskins in 2000 as he looked to buy success. This meant that Washington had the first $100 million payroll in history and was one of the most hyped NFL teams ever. The L.A. Rams proved in 2022 that it’s possible to invest heavily to win a ring but it’s a massive risk if it doesn’t work.


Unfortunately, Washington fans watched their team stumble to an 8-8 season as they failed to make the playoffs. Snyder also lost patience with Norv Turner at the midpoint of the year as it became clear that he didn’t have the skills for the job. It was a huge shock because everybody expected more from them (via ESPN).

Sports Illustrated

Carolina Panthers – 2016

It’s not uncommon for Super Bowl contenders to fall apart after losing the showpiece game. But nobody expected the Panthers to suffer a dramatic meltdown in 2016. In Cam Newton, they had the league’s reigning MVP and one of the most exciting quarterbacks in the league.

Sporting News

But Newton had an immediate decline and this seriously affected their record. They lost their way and missed the playoffs after they became one of the most hyped NFL teams of the decade. Ron Rivera made a serious error when he allowed star cornerback Josh Norman to leave because this left a gaping hole in their roster (via Fox Sports).

Fox Sports

Dallas Cowboys – 2020

The Cowboys entered 2020 with one of the most stacked offenses in the league. They were one of the hyped NFL teams that entered the season and fans hoped that they’d have a great year. Their quarterback Dak Prescott had weapons like Ezekiel Elliot, Amari Cooper, and CeeDee Lamb at his disposal (via ABC).

Dallas Morning News

But then it became a lost year after Prescott suffered a serious injury. He made a decent start to the season but everything fell apart for the franchise. Coach Mike McCarthy struggled to turn the situation around during the global health crisis. In the end, they went 6-10 but it could have been worse for them.

New York Times

Denver Broncos – 2022

Denver fans licked their lips after the team signed Russell Wilson in 2022. This was the most high-profile trade of the offseason and many people thought that they’d become instant contenders. Even if they didn’t win a Super Bowl it was a step in the right direction. However, the Broncos joined the ranks of hyped NFL teams that crushed their fans’ dreams.


Wilson had a diabolical season as his lack of mobility cost him dearly. Meanwhile, many critics cited attitude problems as a reason why he didn’t gel with his teammates. Rookie coach, Nathaniel Hackett was also clearly out of his depth as he led his team to only three wins in their first nine games (via NBC Sports).