At the top of my list as a sports fan is the NFL in general. As you might imagine, since I live in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, I hear a lot about the Dallas Cowboys. My off the cuff response has always been to say that Jerry Jones is the next Al Davis and pretty soon he will be wearing white Cowboy jump suits, firing coaches on a regular basis, and basically running his team into the ground. Davis and Jerry Jones are in a unique set of owners who try to run the team themselves. Dan Snyder and Mike Brown are also members of this group of failure.
Success in the NFL is defined differently by each organization, some are happy to make the playoffs, while for others a Super Bowl appearance is the only thing that is considered a success. I decided to take a look at the last twenty Super Bowls that were played and see who was pulling the strings behind the teams that played in the game.
|XXIV||San Francisco 49ers||Denver Broncos|
|XXV||New York Giants||Buffalo Bills|
|XXVI||Washington Redskins||Buffalo Bills|
|XXVII||Dallas Cowboys||Buffalo Bills|
|XXVIII||Dallas Cowboys||Buffalo Bills|
|XXIX||San Francisco 49ers||San Diego Chargers|
|XXX||Dallas Cowboys||Pittsburgh Steelers|
|XXXI||Green Bay Packers||New England Patriots|
|XXXII||Denver Broncos||Green Bay Packers|
|XXXIII||Denver Broncos||Atlanta Falcons|
|XXXIV||St. Louis Rams||Tennessee Titans|
|XXXV||Baltimore Ravens||New York Giants|
|XXXVI||New England Patriots||St. Louis Rams|
|XXXVII||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||Oakland Raiders|
|XXXVIII||New England Patriots||Carolina Panthers|
|XXXIX||New England Patriots||Philadelphia Eagles|
|XL||Pittsburgh Steelers||Seattle Seahawks|
|XLI||Indianapolis Colts||Chicago Bears|
|XLII||New York Giants||New England Patriots|
|XLIII||Pittsburgh Steelers||Arizona Cardinals|
In taking a look at the above table, the only team that I can see that had a meddlesome owner was the Raiders who lost Super Bowl XXXVII. That team was heavily influenced by the leaders of the Tampa team who beat the Raiders (Gruden and Bruce Allen). Looking at the other winners, you see teams that coaches were also the GMs (49ers, early Giants, Redskins, Cowboys, Broncos, Patriots) and you see teams with actual GMs (Ravens, Steelers, Colts, Bills, Panthers). The early 1990s Cowboys were built by Jimmy Johnson and Jerry Jones had very little to do with the personnel decisions.
From what I can gather, this bodes very poorly for the Cowboys, Redskins, Raiders, Bengals, and any other team with a heavily involved owner that I have left off the list.