LINN: Ironic Playoff Losses Of NFL Coaches Dennis Green, Tony Dungy, And Lovie Smith

Written by Andrew Linn on October 19, 2021

In the midst of the cancel culture going after anyone saying something that is perceived to be offensive, I would like to bring up a particular matter that I have been thinking about for some time. This matter involves Dennis Green, Lovie Smith, and Tony Dungy, three African-Americans who have been NFL head coaches.

In 1992, Dennis Green (who died in 2016) became head coach of the Minnesota Vikings, and it would be several seasons until he won his first playoff game (the 1997 season to be exact).  In the 1998 season, the Vikings finished with a record of 15-1, but lost to the Atlanta Falcons in the NFC title game. In the 1999 season, the Vikings were 10-6, and lost to the St. Louis Rams in the divisional round. And in the 2000 season, the Vikings had a record of 11-5, and lost to the New York Giants in the NFC title game.

In the 2005 NFL season, the Chicago Bears and Indianapolis Colts both won their divisions.  The Bears finished at 11-5 and lost to the Carolina Panthers in the divisional round, while the Colts were 14-2 and also lost in the divisional round (to the Pittsburgh Steelers).

All of these playoff losses for Dennis Green, Lovie Smith, and Tony Dungy took place the day before Martin Luther Day.

Were these losses a series of coincidences? Were they the result of a possible curse? It’s hard to say. But one thing is certain, these losses are ironic.

If the losses were a curse, then the curse appears to have been broken, because, in the 2006 season, both the Bears and the Colts would emerge victorious in their respective conference championship games. Thus, Lovie Smith and Tony Dungy would be the first African-American head coaches to take their teams to the Super Bowl.

Now that I have brought the matter up, I wonder how the cancel culture would react.  Would I be labeled a racist for pointing out that these games took place the day before Martin Luther King Day?

I wonder if Dennis Green (when he was still alive) took note of the irony surrounding the playoff losses he experienced for three straight seasons.

Are Lovie Smith and Tony Dungy aware of the irony surrounding their playoff games from the 2005 and 2006 seasons?

As a matter of fact, is anyone else aware of the irony regarding these playoff games?


Andrew Linn
Andrew Linn is a member of the Owensboro Tea Party and a former Field Representative for the Media Research Center. An ex-Democrat, he became a Republican one week after the 2008 Presidential Election. He has an M.A. in history from the University of Louisville, where he became a member of the Phi Alpha Theta historical honors society. He has also contributed to and Right Impulse Media.