With the nfl playoffs upon us and the pigskin…

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With the NFL playoffs upon us, and the pigskin game befuddled by concussion fears and ridiculously huge television ratings, Men In Blazers thought we would do the game a solid, by connecting fans of America’s game (soccer) back to the gridiron.  A similar role we once played for athen-beleaguered NBA 

The idea started last weekend when Rog suffered whilst watching his exquisite Chicago Bears slump to wonder defeat.A loss which made him tweet “Being a Bears fan is eerily like being an Everton supporter.”Hundreds of you emailed in response.Thanks to GFOPs Mitchill, Phil McCoy, Darren Peterson,Jed Dawson, Michael Von Hoff Joe Nacca and Rich Douglass, Tim Kopcial and Jason Ploeger for their contributions.

NFC coming next week.Email us your suggestions.

AFC NORTH

Baltimore Ravens are Swansea City

The nearby, more successful, less crazy team to their “world of crazy” neighbors ( Cardiff/Washington.)Conjured success when least expected to, winning the respect of neutrals in the process.  The Prodigal Son may have departed (Brendan Rodgers/ Ray Lewis) but the team retain their sense of dignity irrespective.

Cincinnati Bengals are Hull City

Both team’s dodgy uniform aesthetic needs work. Their owners appear to delight in inflaming the dedicated fanbases who in turn, live to protest.Let’s go Tigers!

Cleveland Browns are Derby County

In the dimming past, legendary coaches (Paul Brown and Brian Clough) bred championships and glory.Despair and frustration are the only solace for the dedicated, suffering hardcore who still believe in these cold, working class towns few tourists would ever elect to visit.A partnership with the Rams is perfect validation of the scientific truth that “God hates Cleveland.”

Pittsburgh Steelers are Liverpool

Two entities that revel in their history, and though their campaigns are always competitive, they have recently fallen off the pace.  Their best players are controversial (Ben Roethlisberger for his multiple off the field issues, Luis Suarez for his multiple on the field issues.)Both retain the unflagging support of undying fans for whom they are the pulse of the city. “Both sets of fans claim to speak English, but that claim is doubtful at best” says one GFOP.

AFC SOUTH

Houston Texans are Birmingham City

Both of these chronic underachievers are rooted in major, bustling metropolises.Both are plagued by an unfathomable question: Why aren’t they able to accomplish more?

Indianapolis Colts are Southampton

Both teams are unexpectedly good despite investing in the fearlessness of youth over tried and tested experience.Stick Dani Osvaldo’s chinny beard on hulking Rickie Lambert and voila, Andrew Luck.

Jacksonville Jaguars are Norwich City

Fulham may have been the obvious choice, but the Norwich comparison was an overwhelming winner.“We’re in the middle of nowhere.  We aren’t any good.  We’re terrific at kicking the ball hard and both teams are pretty much the only ones who would be better if Tim Tebow played for them,” explained one GFOP.

Tennessee Titans are MK Dons

Two clubs who changed everything – their city, their names, their identity – except their level of performance. Sports equivalent of entering the Witness Protection Program.Existence without dignity.

AFC EAST

Buffalo Bills are Blackburn Rovers

The glory of the 1990s has been replaced by the anonymity of a new millennium.Managerial legends Marv Levy and King Kenny Dalglish are now consigned to a dim and distant past.A new generation of fans have never experienced winning. Both teams seem destined to languish until ownership changes.

Miami Dolphins are Tottenham Hotspur

A rich history that is sadly located in the distant past. The Dolphins have the only undefeated NFL season; Spurs were the first English team to do the Double.Talismanic figures from the 80s and 90s still loom large – Dan Marino, Paul Gascoigne. Jurgen Klinsmann. Locker room drama (Richie Icognito/AVB) has been the dominant narrative this season.Both teams remain lesser “rivals” to bigger neighbors – the Patriots/Arsenal. “I am a fan of both and can tell you it is frustratingly depressing when the teams get your hopes up just to crush them,” says one GFOP.

New England Patriots are Arsenal

Invincible in the early 2000’s, fans flocked behind a great player (Thierry Henry/Tom Brady) and a dour coach (Arsene Wenger/Bill Belichick) both of whom have consistently been accused of ageing past their sell-by date only to prove the doubters wrong. Trophies have been conspicuous by their absence even though both teams have resorted to fielding male models in the Number 12 shirt.

New York Jets are Newcastle

Neither team has won a trophy since the 1960s. Hopes are perpetually high. Disaster lingers around every corner.Their long-suffering fans remain joyous, having learned to worship fleeting talent and enjoy the small things in life: copious amounts of beer and exposing their nipples to the danger of frostbite at every opportunity.

AFC WEST

Denver Broncos are Inter Milan

In a vaunted past, always threatened to be dynastic without being able to sustain the glory.Peyton Manning’s forehead can only be matched square inch for square inch by Esteban Cambiasso.

Kansas City Chiefs are Sunderland

A sporting hotbed in the middle of nowhere.The lesser side of a passionately fought-out rivalry but the locals really, really, really care.Sumptuous offenses in the game propelled by the game’s two outstanding specimens, Alex Smith and Jozy Altidore.

Oakland Raiders are Nottingham Forest

Newcomers would not believe the storied tales of their past. Superbowls, European trophies, star-packed squads, coaching legends who reinvented the game.Defanged, distraught, and dire, both teams are “now in a humpty-dumpty situation,” according to one GFOP.

San Diego Chargers are AFC Bournemouth

Neither side is going to win the title anytime soon, but the weather, you would not trade it for anything.

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