Top 10 Most Intense NFL Rivalries of All Time

Top 10 Most Intense NFL Rivalries of All Time
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Updated: Aug 19, 2022

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The NFL is filled with intense and exciting rivalries, but some stand out above the rest. These top 10 NFL rivalries of all time are among the fiercest, most divisive and extreme in league history. Each of these epic feuds has developed its history, lore and traditions that have made it more than just another game for these two teams.

Whenever these bitter rivals meet, fans know they’re going to see red-hot intensity from start to finish. Even if you aren’t a diehard football fan, you’ve probably heard of some of these famous rivalry games. They are staples of the NFL, besides being universally famous outside of the league as well.

10. New York Giants vs. Philadelphia Eagles

The Giants and Eagles are two of the most successful franchises in NFL history. Their rivalry is one of the oldest in the league, dating back to 1933 when both teams were part of the American Football League.

The Giants have a few anti-Eagles traditions, like refusing to eat their cheesesteaks with silverware and refusing to acknowledge the existence of the town of Philadelphians. The teams play each other twice a year, and each game is always a high-intensity, high-scoring affair.

This kind of psychological play is much like what you would expect in college football, everyone is gunning to prove their worth and these stats are clear everywhere, especially in college football betting.

9. Denver Broncos vs. Kansas City Chiefs

The Denver Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs have one of the most long-standing rivalries in the NFL, dating back to the AFL’s inaugural season in 1960. Both teams were members of the AFL when it merged with the NFL in 1970. The Chiefs’ best run in the rivalry occurred when they won 10 straight games between 1973 and 1979.

The Broncos’ best streak came between 1986 and 1994 when they won 10 of 12 games. The Chiefs and Broncos have met in many playoffs, including the first-ever AFC Championship Game in 1970.

8. Pittsburgh Steelers vs. the Cincinnati Bengals

This rivalry began in the 1970s when both teams were among the best in the league. The conflict between these two teams has led to plenty of trash talk and feuding between their players, coaches and even their fans.

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This has led to many heated moments between the two teams, including a Bengals player giving a middle finger salute to the Steelers’ sidelines and Steelers’ linebacker James Harrison calling the Bengals cheaters.

7. New England Patriots vs. Miami Dolphins

They are two of the most successful teams in the entire super bowl league, and they have been playing each other since 1966. The two teams also played each other in the infamous “Snow Bowl,” one of the most famous games in NFL history.

That game was played in a snowstorm and is widely considered one of the most intense games in league history. It was also the only game in NFL history to be declared a tie but was one of the longest games ever played, lasting 82 minutes and 40 seconds.

6. Green Bay Packers vs. Chicago Bears

The Packers and Bears have one of the longest and most bitterly contested rivalries in all of the sports, dating back to 1921 when the Packers joined the NFL. The Packers vs. Bears rivalry is one of the most iconic in all of the sports, and it has been depicted in movies and TV shows such as “Any Given Sunday” and “The Waterboy.”

Packers and Bears fans are known for their boastful and condescending behaviours, often bragging about their team’s superiority.

5. Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cleveland Browns

The Pittsburgh Steelers and Cleveland Browns have been two of the most successful teams in the NFL over the past few years. Both teams have won multiple Super Bowls and have been to the playoffs many times. The Steelers and Browns have one of the most heated rivalries in the NFL, and the intensity between these teams has increased since the Browns moved to Baltimore in 1996.

The rivalry began in 1950, shortly after the Browns joined the NFL as an expansion team. These two teams have been battling it out for over 50 years, and the rivalry is as strong as ever. The Browns have had the upper hand in recent years, but the Steelers are always a tough team to beat.

4. Dallas Cowboys vs. Washington Redskins

Two of the oldest and most storied NFL franchises face off every season as part of the league’s Thanksgiving Day tradition. The Redskins and Cowboys have been playing each other for decades, giving them plenty of time to build up a fierce rivalry. The two teams are not only fierce rivals, but they are also divisional rivals that play each other twice every season as part of the NFL’s rotating schedule.

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The rivalry between the Redskins and Cowboys is one of the longest-running in the NFL, and it’s one of the fiercest as well. It’s not uncommon for this rivalry to turn physical, and it’s become traditional for the game to feature at least one major fight. The rivalry between these two began in the 1960s and has been intense ever since.

This rivalry has also produced plenty of memorable quotes and sound bites over the years. One of the most famous comes from Redskins’ head coach George Allen, who once said, “The best way to end a losing streak is to start a new one.” This quote perfectly describes the competitive spirit of these two teams, who never seem to be satisfied with a win unless it’s a win by a wide margin.

3. New England Patriots vs. the Indianapolis Colts

One of the most recent NFL rivalries has developed into an intense feud between the New England Patriots and the Indianapolis Colts. This fierce rivalry began in the mid-2000s and kicked into high gear when the two teams met in the AFC Championship Game in 2007.

The Patriots defeated the Colts during that AFC title game. New England won Super Bowl XLII against the New York Giants, and Indianapolis went home heartbroken. The Colts’ loss sparked the beginning of their intense rivalry with the Patriots. Colts’ coach Tony Dungy stoked the rivalry flames when he said New England “did what they had to do to win.”

Dungy’s comments were widely criticized and only added fuel to the fire of this budding rivalry. Since then, the Colts and Patriots have met twice each season and twice each postseason, making this one of the most intense rivalries in NFL history.

2. St. Louis Rams vs. The Atlanta Falcons

The rivalry between the St. Louis Rams and the Atlanta Falcons began when the two teams were both members of the same conference in the 1990s. This rivalry got a second wind during the 2000s when the two teams met in the playoffs twice. During the 1990s, the two teams met seven times, including the 1996 NFC Championship Game, in which the Falcons defeated the Rams to advance to the Super Bowl.

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Atlanta defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers to win the franchise’s first-ever Super Bowl. These two teams have an intense history, including a playoff game in which the Rams were up by three points with less than a minute to play. Atlanta drove the ball down the field, but Rams cornerback Mike Furr picked off Falcons quarterback Doug Johnson with less than 10 seconds left to seal the victory.

The bitterness between the two teams went deep, and it even extended to the coaches. Rams coach Chuck Knox and Atlanta’s coach June Jones were both fined for verbally abusing each other during the playoff game.

1. Oakland Raiders vs. San Francisco 49ers

The Raiders and 49ers have one of the fiercest and longest-running rivalries in the NFL, dating back to 1960 when the Raiders were an AFL team and the 49ers were an NFL team. The Raiders and 49ers have developed a heated rivalry because the two teams are in the same city.

The two teams are also similar in that they are both established franchises with a rich history that has included several championships. The rivalry between the two teams is intense, and there is even some animosity between the two fan bases.

This is one of the greatest rivalries known in NFL history. You can be sure that when these teams meet, it’s going to be one of the most exciting games of the season.

Conclusion

NFL rivalries are filled with plenty of intense moments and heated trash talk, but the best ones also have plenty of history behind them. These top 10 NFL rivalries of all time are some of the fiercest and most extreme in NFL history. They’ve been around for decades, and they’ve given us plenty of memorable games.

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