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Whining Allowed Index by Fanbase

You can win or you can whine, but you’re not allowed to do both. My guide for the level of whining I’ll accept from different fanbases

NFL: JAN 21 AFC Divisional Playoffs - Jaguars at Chiefs Photo by Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

I had a conversation with a Vikings fan recently that went something like this:

“At least you guys have the one Super Bowl, we don’t have any championships.”

To which I reply, “Sure, but I was like 3.”

But there’s something to that sentiment. Similarly, I saw some Eagles fans whining on the blue bird app about the Super Bowl and I’m thinking, didn’t you fools just win one of these? No whining. Oh, and did you catch the Patriot fans complaining this year? Absolutely not having it.

So, I figured, let’s put some rules and some math to it and give it a silly name. We’ll call it the Whining-Allowed Index by Fanbase or WAIF for short. The WAIF is calculated by a fancy equation like:

WAIF = (1 * 1.1)^N-1

N in this equation equals the number of years that whining has been allowed for said fanbase. Each team starts with a score of 1 in the first year that the Super Bowl was played or the year they played their first season as an expansion team, whichever came latest. If a team wins a Super Bowl, the WAIF sets to zero with a 10-year moratorium on whining added to their time in the winner’s circle. Win another championship during your time in the winners circle? Add another 10 years to the silence. The rest of us don’t want to hear it.

There are 21 fanbases that are allowed to whine about their team not winning a Super Bowl lately. The other 11 are in the winner’s circle moratorium, some for a long time. What does this look like in graphical form? I’m glad you asked. Let’s map this out, with number of Super Bowl wins along the horizontal axis and the number of years the fanbase has been allowed to whine along the vertical.

As you can see, there are a number of teams that have been around since Super Bowl I that haven’t won a trophy. They’re allowed to whine the most. If you want to add in some additional qualifiers or heartbreak to the equation, be my guest, but those teams at the top deserve it. A couple of notes to consider:

  • The Browns had a few gap years between when their franchise moved to Baltimore and they were awarded an expansion team. Personally, I think they should never be allowed to win a championship after they had a chance to change their team name but stuck with the Browns...
  • The Titans were the Oilers, but we’re giving them credit for their longstanding misery.
  • I’m not counting before Super Bowls because that’s what the football world has decided we care about. I like football history but we’ll keep it to Super Bowls.

Now, what does the WAIF score mean in reality? Do Vikings fans get to whine more than 200 times more than Ravens fans? Yeah, actually, I think they probably do. The WAIF score is a state of mind, a way to quantify the emotional baggage that comes with cheering for these teams. The only release is watching your team win the big one...or death, I guess. I hope if your team does win one while you’re alive that you’re older than three years old when it happens so you can appreciate it.

For the other 11 fan bases, assuming you don’t win another championship between now and then, here’s when you can look forward to whining again:

  • Seahawks 2024
  • Cowboys 2026
  • Eagles 2027
  • Broncos 2029
  • Giants 2030
  • Bucs 2030
  • Rams 2031
  • 49ers 2035
  • Steelers 2039
  • Chiefs 2040
  • Patriots 2066

Seriously, Patriots fans, you can run through ten new quarterbacks and not win another championship and no one should feel bad for you.