Supposedly it’s Harry Potter day (social media said so), and while National # Holidays are kinda stupid in my opinion, I had this fun idea and decided to run with it. So I broke down all eight divisions, all 32 teams, and told you which team in which division belongs in which Hogwarts house. Enjoy.
In case you’ve been living under a rock for 30 years, here’s a dumbed down description of what it means to be part of any of the four houses.
Gryffindors– Brash, bold, courageous, if rambunctious or bothersome.
Slytherins– Cunning, bright, ambitious, if deceptive or conniving.
Ravenclaws– Brilliant, intellectual, stoic, if condescending or pretentious.
Hufflepuffs– Good, loyal, hard-working, if… well.. ya know… underwhelming.
Every NFL Division Split Into Hogwarts Houses
Pittsburgh Steelers: Slytherin
Duh? I mean c’mon. You can’t look at a team that had players like Mel Blount, Hines Ward, Jerry Porter, or a history of violent, nasty players that were willing to do whatever it took to win, which they did, often, and call them anything else. Winning as many Lombardi trophies, by any means necessary sounds very ambitious to me.
Baltimore Ravens: Gryffindor
Imagine if you took everything that made the Pittsburgh Steelers great, put a little polish on it, and gave them a loud-mouthed Hall of Fame inside linebacker. Congratulations, you have the Baltimore Ravens. Is there another team in the NFL as brash as Baltimore’s notoriously tough Purple and Black squad? Not quite as underhanded as Pittsburgh but far more successful than the rest of the division, the reigning AFC North Champions are “the good guys.”
Cleveland Browns: Hufflepuff
I’m sorry Dawg Pound, but you knew this was coming. Things are looking bright right here in 2019 with Baker Mayfield, Myles Garrett, Denzel Ward, and Odell Beckham Jr, but what about the rest of your history? Two winning records and one playoff appearance over the last 20 seasons? That’s not great. But you know what is great? The never-ending resilience of this fanbase, that shows up every year, rain or shine, even if the team isn’t winning games. Did you know the year the Browns went 0-16, they had a better average attendance rate than the New England Patriots? That’s a fact.
Cincinnati Bengals: Ravenclaw
Many people don’t know this, but Bill Walsh invented the West Coast offense as the offensive coordinator of the Cincinnati Bengals. He had just come over from Oakland, where he specialized in Al Davis’ vertical offense but felt like it had some issues. It was in Cincinnati with Virgil Carter, who had a so-so arm, that he invented the style of passing offense that completely changed the way people pass the ball.
Indianapolis Colts: Slytherin
You might’ve though the Indianapolis Colts were obvious Gryffindors, given their consistent dominance of the division over the last twenty years, but there are some interesting allegations that have been made against this team that have gone unnoticed. The Colts funneling fake crowd noise in through the speakers? Blowing the whistle on “deflated” footballs? What about how Bill Polian basically re-wrote the rules so Marvin Harrison and Indianapolis’ smaller receivers could thrive? Just because teams don’t get caught, that doesn’t mean they don’t cheat.
Jacksonville Jaguars: Ravenclaw
The mind-games played by Jalen Ramsey alone make the Jags the obvious Ravenclaws. Sure, his physical play is impressive, but the way he outsmarts quarterbacks and receivers alike makes the All-Pro corner a cerebral assassin. Throw in former Jaguars like Fred Taylor who could beat you physically, as well as mentally, and you’ve got a pretty smart group.
Houston Texans: Gryffindor
Think of everything we’re told to like about Gryffindors. Think of their selflessness, their bravery, and their brash, unflappable courage. Now tell me that’s not J.J. Watt to a T. His own unstoppable play on the field is almost as impressive as his charitable activities off of it. Watt is such a Gryffindor he makes Harry Potter look like a muggle.
Tennessee Titans: Hufflepuff
How annoying is it to constantly be just okay? 9-7 season after 9-7 season, the Titans are always good enough to challenge just about anyone on any given Sunday, but they’re never good enough to win the games that matter. But much like Derrick Henry on the actual longest touchdown of all time, they never give up. And that kind of persistence is exactly what makes Hufflepuffs so wonderful.
New England Patriots: Slytherin
Hahahahahaha. Oh wait, you’re serious? I actually have to explain this?? C’mon. No team in NFL history “wins at any cost” quite like the New England Patriots have.
Miami Dolphins: Ravenclaw
The Miami Dolphins are a bit of a laughing stock now, but they haven’t always been that way. Think back to Don Shula’s legendary Dolphins team. The 1972 Dolphins are the only undefeated squad in NFL history. Now think about those explosive Dan Marino offenses in the 1980’s that put up numbers that would look great today in 2019. Even a few years ago, the Wildcat tandem of Ricky Williams and Ronnie Brown were inventive. This is a franchise that’s always benefited from cleverness.
New York Jets: Gryffindor
The New York Jets have taken their shots at the New England Patriots over the last 20 years, and they’ve never backed down. Whether it’s been the random upsets or the Rex Ryan era, this brash team has always taken on the AFC East’s juggernaut with exactly the kind of swagger you’d expect from a team that claims New York City.
Buffalo Bills: Hufflepuff
Imagine losing a Super Bowl. That’s pretty devastating, right? Now imagine losing it the year after. And the year after. And then the year after. Now imagine a 20 year stretch where you don’t make the playoffs. Are you willing to throw yourself through a table out of love for your team? Because if the answer is no, you don’t have what it takes to join the Bills Mafia.
Oakland Raiders: Slytherin
Raider Rule #1- Cheating is encouraged. Raider Rule #2- See Raider Rule #1. Also, Kenny Stabler, the best quarterback in franchise history? Was nicknamed “The Snake.” Pack up folks, nothing to see here.
Kansas City Chiefs: Ravenclaw
A history of cerebral head coaches, begrudgingly accepting Hank Stram before moving on to Marv Levy, Marty Schottenheimer, Dick Vermeil, and Andy Reid, puts the Chiefs on this list. Just think about the system that Reid has built for Patrick Mahomes in Kansas City. His strengths are moving around, throwing the ball deep, and throwing from out of pocket so Andy Reid built a team full of guys who are uncoverable after a couple of seconds in coverage, and a physical tight end that can win 50/50 balls. Brains over brawn has panned out well in Kansas City.
Los Angeles Chargers: Hufflepuff
The All-Chargers team has to read like a Hall of Fame ballot. John Hadl, Dan Fouts, Philip Rivers, LaDainian Tomlinson, Lance Alworth, Antonio Gates, Kellen Winslow, I mean, it goes on, and on, and on. But despite all the great Bolts in history, the trophy case remains empty, much like the stands of their home games. That doesn’t stop the Chargers from trying though, and it’s turned them into one of the best road teams in the NFL.
Denver Broncos: Gryffindor
Whether it was John Elway struggling to carry the Broncos on his back, Terrell Davis breaking 2,000 yards and winning championships for Denver, Tim Tebow starting the least likely playoff run of all-time, or Von Miller singlehandedly delivering a Lombardi Trophy in 2015 by taking out Tom Brady and league MVP, Cam Newton, the Broncos have always been pretty straight up with their actions.
Green Bay Packers: Ravenclaw
The Green Bay Packers have a fantastic history of coaches, starting with Vince Lombardi himself, running through to the beginning of Mike McCarthy’s run. All this franchise has ever done is get the best out of Hall of Fame quarterbacks, from Bart Starr to Brett Favre to Aaron Rodgers.
Minnesota Vikings: Slytherin
Are we just going to pretend Anthony Barr didn’t destroy Aaron Rodgers like five minutes ago? Because the team apologized, swore that kind of behavior was behind them, and then a week later, safety Andrew Sendejo just about knocked Mike Wallace’s head off. This is the same Vikings team that notoriously piped in fake crowd noise back in the day, and the same Vikings team that also deflated footballs, ala Deflategate. Oh! And also they had Randy Moss, who is a human cheat code. The Vikings have had a decent history of cheating to win, they just don’t get blamed because they haven’t won the games that matter.
Detroit Lions: Hufflepuff
The Detroit Lions have had two of the absolute best football players of all time in Calvin Johnson and Barry Sanders, and both of them retired young. Matthew Stafford hit his peak half a decade ago and has slowly declined ever since. This team is without a Super Bowl championship and hasn’t won a playoff game since 1957. However, that hasn’t stopped Lions fans from claiming that this was their year, every year, even when they became the first team to finish a 16 game season without a win.
Chicago Bears: Gryffindor
Bold, brash, and brave are words you’d have to use to describe anyone stupid enough to come into Soldier Field and take on the Monsters of the Midway. A history of monstrous linebackers from Dick Butkus to Khalil Mack haven’t bothered disguising the cold, hard truth of playing against the Bears. You’re going to go down, and you’re going to go down hard.
New Orleans Saints: Ravenclaw
Sean Payton is the best offensive coach in NFL history. I know there have been others who have changed the game more or had better numbers, but Payton’s scheme in New Orleans not only transformed a journeyman Drew Brees into the NFL’s All-Time leading passer, but he’s gotten elite production out of players like Jimmy Graham and Reggie Bush, who failed to duplicate their success elsewhere.
Atlanta Falcons: Hufflepuff
As the only team in the division without a Super Bowl championship, the Falcons suffered the most embarrassing Super Bowl loss of all time by blowing a certain lead a few years back. They’ve struggled to return to form since then, dealing with a ton of injuries, especially on the defensive side of the ball. However, that doesn’t stop them from trying hard, and like a Hufflepuff would, they’re ready to put in the work and persevere in 2019.
Carolina Panthers: Gryffindor
The short history of the Carolina Panthers is full of physical, brash players. Luke Kuechly, Jared Allen, Julius Peppers, and Cam Newton are all brutes, but nobody epitomizes both the Panthers and Gryffindor as much as Steve Smith. Try to tell him that he’s “too small” and see how that goes for you.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Slytherin
Honestly, the 2002 Tampa Bay Buccaneers are the most Slytherin team I’ve ever heard of. Using someone else’s roster, Jon Gruden beat up the entire NFC before advancing to the Super Bowl, where he knew the opposing team’s playbook verbatim (because he designed it) to crush the Oakland Raiders. I mean, c’mon.
Dallas Cowboys: Slytherin
This kinda falls into the Pittsburgh/New England category of “duh” picks. They’re the Cowboys. They’re Jerry Jones and Emmitt Smith and Michael Irvin. They’re the unstoppable, obnoxious, most hated franchise in the NFL dynasty of the past. Everyone hates them, simply because they won.
New York Giants: Ravenclaw
Here’s a list of coaches that have worked for the New York Giants in one capacity or another. Bill Parcells, Bill Belichick, Tom Coughlin, Sean Payton, Vince Lombardi, and Dan Reeves. Easily the best group of coaches of any team in NFL history, with Parcells, Coughlin, and Reeves taking the head job at one point or another with two winning multiple Super Bowls. Not to mention, they basically invented the 3-4 by turning good athlete Lawrence Taylor into a legendary linebacker.
Philadelphia Eagles: Gryffindor
I went to the Raiders/Eagles game on Christmas night a couple of years ago, and while I was hassled for wearing my Silver and Black gear, it was all done in good taste. They’re arguably the loudest and most brash fanbase in the entire NFL, but they’re also arguably the best. No team in the NFL represents their fanbase better than the Philadelphia Eagles.
Washington Redskins: Hufflepuff
The Washington Redskins have a history of unexpected success. Kirk Cousins went from camp arm to franchise quarterback here. Joe Gibbs won three Super Bowls with three different quarterbacks, including Doug Williams, who wasn’t even the starter at the beginning of the season. Not to mention John Riggins basically came out of retirement and remains one of the best tailbacks (over 30) in NFL history.
Seattle Seahawks: Slytherin
Richard Sherman is the perfect Slytherin. Just think back to the early Legion of Boom days, with Kam Chancellor crushing souls over the middle, Earl Thomas wiping out tight ends, and Sherman cutting wrestling promos on “sorry ass receivers” like Michael Crabtree. Talking the talk, walking the walk, and winning by any means necessary sounds like Salazar’s house to me.
San Francisco 49ers: Gryffindor
I just think about Joe Montana and the San Francisco 49ers before the Catch, unseating the Dallas Cowboy menace. Not to mention, ruffling some feathers here, brash, bold, and outspoken are a few words easily applied to Colin Kaepernick. Not everyone agrees with Mr. Kaepernick, but not everyone sees Gryffindor as the wholesome good guys either. Remember Peter Pettigrew? Because that dude blasts a hole in the “no bad wizards came from anywhere but slytherin” nonsense.
Los Angeles Rams: Ravenclaw
Sean McVay’s robotic recital of specific play-calls from months earlier is enough to warrant the entire history of the franchise being classified as Ravenclaws, before breaking into the genius that is the offense he’s built. And that’s without travelling back in time to Dick Vermeil and Mike Martz creating the Greatest Show on Turf. Arguably the most clever franchise in NFL history.
Arizona Cardinals: Hufflepuff
Larry Fitzgerald, putting up Hall of Fame numbers with Hall of Shame quarterbacks justifies this pick. They came one freak Santonio Holmes catch away from winning a championship once, and they haven’t been back since, despite their very best efforts.