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24th Dec 2017

If NFL teams were family members at Christmas

No prizes for guessing who the Patriots are...

Wayne Farry

Ah, Christmas. That special time of year. It is an occasion for family and friends to congregate and enjoy food, beverages and above all else, each other’s company.

But Christmas at home with the family is not without its pitfalls. Fights over the washing up, political arguments, fistfights with your uncles over whether or not the Steelers touchdown last weekend should have counted; it is far from a simple affair.

In spite of this, family is family, whether we love the great smorgasbord of personalities within.

With that in mind – and with a bumper weekend of NFL action taking place this Christmas weekend – we have decided to do what any right-minded humans would, and selected exactly which NFL teams correspond to members of your eclectic family.

Patriots – Your annoyingly successful cousin that your mother wishes you were more like

The Patriots – or cousin Greg as we call him in this house – is everything you are not. Successful, handsome, marketable and with a long tradition of near tear-inducing consistency, Greg is the man.

Deep down, you know that your mother wishes you were more like him, while you yourself are unsure whether you hate him or simply want to be him.

But you’ll never be him, so you remain content to publicly wish him well, all the while hoping he might just slip on your carefully placed cranberry sauce and spill mulled wine on your mum’s new John Lewis tablecloth.

Cleveland Browns – Your fairly unsuccessful brother who always tries but never quite succeeds at anything he does, but you love him nonetheless

Poor old Steve, will anything ever go his way? It would appear not, frankly. Your brother has not had an easy run of things. People try to help him out and give him opportunities, but sometimes it just feels like he cannot get a win, despite his efforts, and despite the family’s willingness to let him win at Monopoly on Christmas Day.

He never stops trying though, and gets up every morning to keep going at it, believing that one day he will come out on top. In spite of this – and perhaps because of it – you all love him just the way is.

Los Angeles Rams – Your cousin who has totally reinvented himself since last year

When your cousin Trent told the family that he was moving cities and was planning on reinventing his entire life, you struggled to suppress your laughter. What – you thought – was a beard, skinny jeans and a brand new city going to do for the perennially underachieving son of your aunt? Nothing, you suspected, but you were wrong. Dead wrong.

Trent’s move and subsequent reinvention was exactly what the doctor ordered. His arrival on Christmas Day has shocked the entire family. He is a new man, finding success at virtually turn and gaining a whole new set of friends and admirers along the way. Some remain skeptical about his ability to keep making so much money selling bespoke Nietzsche quotes on artisan coffee beans, but things look bright for the guy.

Buffalo Bills – The aunt who never gets the right gift, despite getting painfully close each year

Poor old aunt Lydia. You were so, so close yet again. Lydia is a good woman. Like a decent person, she actually puts effort into buying gifts at Christmas. She researches, she asks your parents and your siblings what you’re interested in, she does everything necessary…. and always messes it up.

Whether it’s the Xbox copy of the PS4 game you’ve had your eye on, or that gorgeous jumper you were going to buy but in a size too small, Lydia’s efforts simply always prove futile. Perhaps most annoyingly, she never keeps receipts, meaning you are left with a useless gift and a feeling of regret. Maybe one day Lydia will get it right, but we wouldn’t bet on it.

San Francisco 49ers – Your grandfather who is obsessed with the past and telling you about all his past glories

Ah, grandpappy, of course you’re here. We all care for you – of course we do – but you simply have got to get with the times. No one is saying your achievements aren’t noteworthy but they have been and gone.

We are proud of you, but telling everyone us your actual life accomplishments while throwing in stories about how you taught Paul McCartney how to play guitar and once wrestled a cow to the ground is quite honestly not a good look.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers – The second cousin who everyone says has a bright future ahead of him

Second cousin Terrence, as I live and breath. This chirpy young man is apparently gifted beyond his year, and no one is willing to go two minutes without letting the world know.

“He’s so smart. And strong, and he’s the cross country champion in his school. Just wait until next year’s draft,” your mother will probably say. Look, buddy boy, we’re honestly happy for you, but until we actually see you get some wins on the board and do something with your life, we’d appreciate you just getting on with it.