Washington Post Question: In the pursuit of success, what are the advantages and disadvantages of being an established power vs. a hungry upstart? In this Sunday`s Super Bowl, would you give an edge to Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning, who has won a Super Bowl, over New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees, who doesn`t have any Super Bowl experience?
On Jan. 22, while sharing time with two friends who happen to be football fanatics, I shared my reasons for supporting the Vikings.
“I am so annoyed with people telling Favre how to retire. Who makes up the rules anyway? Each person decides when they will retire and they can do so on their own terms. The fact that Favre has made it this far, after coming out of retirement, and with the backlash for doing so, is a huge accomplishment. Go Vikings!”
My friend Mary responded: “I agree, but New Orleans could really use a Super Bowl win to boost their economy.”
With these two ideas clashing against each other, I had to reconsider who I was supporting — do I support my righteous idea about retirement, or go for an entire community, which could greatly benefit from an appearance (and win) at the Super Bowl? The latter suddenly seemed more important, so I switched the team I was supporting.
Fortunately, the expectations and, therefore, pressure, placed on the Colts may create the perfect opportunity for the Saints. When a team shows up and plays their best, without pressure based on expectations, they typically perform better.
There`s no doubt Payton Manning knows how to handle pressure — he`s been to the Super Bowl before. That said, the excitement and thrill of knowing that victory would help bolster the New Orleans economy could be just enough to keep Drew Brees and the team focused and, ultimately, create a win.
Experience is not always a predictor of success; just ask the Patriots when the Giants took the win in the 2008 Super Bowl. Go New Orleans!