NFL’s best revenge games in 2024 season: Saquon Barkley vs. Giants, Super Bowl LVIII rematch & more

NFL’s best revenge games in 2024 season: Saquon Barkley vs. Giants, Super Bowl LVIII rematch & more post thumbnail image

Offseason roster shuffling, particularly when a participant leaves a workforce for a division rival, can get individuals heated — to the purpose the place, say, a former franchise nice will proclaim an lively star “useless” to him. I will deal with that in a second. Such relocations, although, should not unusual.

Working again David Montgomery did it final yr, leaving Chicago for Detroit in free company. And talking of the NFC North, Packers icon Brett Favre spent his ultimate two NFL seasons with the Vikings — enhancing the acrimony between two heated rivals who discover themselves again in the identical sort of highlight on this very piece.

We do not but know precisely what the 2024 NFL schedule will appear to be, however we do know every workforce’s slate of opponents. Which suggests we are able to zero in on alternatives for dangerous blood to be spilled. So, listed below are 12 of my favourite REVENGE matchups on the ’24 marketing campaign’s docket, in no explicit order.

Let’s begin off with a banger — similar to they do at WrestleMania, which is happening in Philadelphia this yr. Now, it was former Giants working again Tiki Barber who (jokingly?) stated Saquon Barkley was useless to him after the star RB signed a big-money deal with the rival Eagles. I get it. There isn’t a love misplaced between Giants and Eagles followers. It’s probably the most bitter rivalries within the NFL. However I really assume this was sort of an awesome transfer, and one which Giants followers shouldn’t be too upset about. Saquon performed some effective soccer throughout his six seasons in New York, incomes a wholesome payday with a workforce that’s nonetheless in its Tremendous Bowl window (we hope, anyway).

The Giants are in a spot the place devoting massive cash to a working again is not the transfer. The Eagles, then again, most likely shouldn’t let their quarterback run for 15 touchdowns, so for them, this signing made plenty of sense. I perceive that it’s disturbing for some to consider Saquon in an Eagles uniform, and that Giants followers can be upset when he has a Christian McCaffrey-like affect with their division rival. However dude is from Allentown, Pennsylvania, (effective, Whitehall Township) and needs to be allowed to go dwelling. Plus, of us ought to blame the workforce that didn’t need to pay Saquon earlier than getting mad on the participant himself. 

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It will be the primary occasion: a championship rematch from final season. It will be cool if the 49ers may have the Chiefs put the Lombardi Trophy on the road on this rematch, however they may simply should accept a regular-season victory for now. We not too long ago had WWE Celebrity Bayley on NFL Whole Entry, and I requested her if the Chiefs, who’ve gained three titles in 5 seasons, have come full circle to develop into the heels (dangerous guys) of the NFL. I believe she agreed. However on condition that San Francisco has misplaced two Tremendous Bowls to Kansas Metropolis in that span, it’s clear that is very private for 49ers devoted. 

It feels a bit of bizarre to assume new Commanders head coach Dan Quinn would need revenge on the Cowboys, though there is likely to be some followers nonetheless upset with the way in which Dallas went out in opposition to Inexperienced Bay on Tremendous Wild Card Weekend. (I referred to as that, btw.) It received a bit of attention-grabbing throughout free company when the Commanders signed former Dallas cross rusher Dorance Armstrong, who might help take the place of Chase Younger and Montez Sweat following their departures through commerce final season. I’m not saying Armstrong is in the identical tier as Sweat or Younger, however he’s not too far behind. Armstrong logged the second-most sacks on the Cowboys over the previous three seasons (behind solely Micah Parsons), together with 7.5 sacks in 2023. He’s been a drive below Quinn and would be the key to Washington’s defensive position. 

By the point Week 18 got here round final season, the Titans have been an 11-loss workforce whose shiny younger quarterback (Will Levis) was sidelined by harm. But they nonetheless beat Jacksonville, placing the ultimate touches on the Jaguars’ beautiful 2023 collapse, protecting them out of the playoffs. How impolite. Apparently, one of many shiny spots for the Jags that day was Calvin Ridley‘s six-catch, 106-yard outing — besides, after all, for what wound up being his final goal with the workforce, a dropped ball that helped seal Jacksonville’s destiny. Ridley was anticipated by many to re-sign with the workforce this offseason — till the Titans swooped in, making him a part of their much-needed offensive reboot. (Tennessee’s offense was sort of like a type of native saloons you see on Bar Rescue.) Ridley’s determination to signal with Tennessee was sort of a stunner, however not an excessive amount of of a stretch, contempl
ating he can be reunited with former Jags passing sport coordinator Nick Holz, who took the offensive coordinator job below new Titans head coach Brian Callahan. So there can be loads of storylines at play.   

BONUS REVENGE: This season, the Titans are additionally internet hosting the Patriots, who have been spurned by Ridley partly as a result of, in response to proprietor Robert Kraft, the thought of transferring to the area wasn’t extremely popular within the Ridley family.

Baltimore’s had some playoff struggles through the Lamar Jackson period. Many thought the 2023 Ravens — the AFC’s prime seeds who notched a convincing Divisional Spherical win over the up-and-coming Texans — have been going to be the workforce to make the leap to the Tremendous Bowl. Not me; I picked the Chiefs. However nonetheless, there was some historical past between Jackson and Patrick Mahomes, with the wins going the way in which of the latter. The truth that Kansas Metropolis went on to win the Tremendous Bowl makes final season’s dwelling loss within the AFC Championship Recreation such a bitter tablet to swallow. And whereas a win within the common season gained’t precisely imply true revenge, Baltimore has circled this showdown.

There isn’t a means the NFL may ship Russell Wilson to face his former workforce to open the season on Monday Evening Soccer once more … proper? That will be the funniest factor ever, and I kind of hope it occurs. For one, it might give Russ one other likelihood proper out of the gate to defeat his former workforce at their place, one thing he wasn’t capable of do in opposition to the Seahawks two years in the past. Additionally, the schedule-makers may need to take into account doing this matchup early within the season, as a result of Justin Fields may find yourself being the Steelers’ starter sooner or later in 2024.

Josh Jacobs and Aaron Jones are going to comprise a GREAT working again tandem for the Packers!

That is what I believed for about 10 minutes after listening to Inexperienced Bay was signing Jacobs. However the Packers launched Jones, who rapidly ended up signing with the Vikings. (The very best half for Jones: He received to skip the one-season stopover with the Jets that Brett Favre needed to make in his journey from Inexperienced Bay to Minnesota.) 

I do know there aren’t any sacred gamers in Titletown. The Packers have let Davante Adams and Aaron Rodgers go lately. (Heck, even Vince Lombardi completed his profession with the Washington soccer workforce.) However in some ways, Jones was central to this workforce’s identification throughout his time in Inexperienced Bay, and this looks like a transfer that the Packers may remorse. 

That is just like the NFL’s model of the wrestling rivalry between Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels. You get the sense the gamers — whereas they may respect one another — actually don’t love one another. And Patrick Queen‘s defection from Baltimore to Pittsburgh as a free agent ought to act as sort of a superkick on this sequence. It will not be shocking if there’s a little further emotional juice on each side. Queen would undoubtedly prefer to show he can stand on his personal as a professional — away from Roquan Smith — after leaving the franchise that declined his fifth-year choice. Baltimore has loved extra common success than Pittsburgh not too long ago, however the Ravens have misplaced seven of their previous eight video games in opposition to the Steelers — and whereas it is true that Lamar Jackson missed a lot of these, he hasn’t overwhelmed Pittsburgh since 2019.  

There may be already some warmth between these franchises. I imply, I really like the pettiness of the Titans sporting Oilers throwback uniforms when the Texans have been on the town in Week 15 final season — a sport Houston gained in additional time. It’s wild to assume that most likely like six % of the Titans’ youthful followers even know there was a workforce as soon as referred to as the Houston Oilers. I don’t imply that in a foul means, however children, am I proper?! The factor is, the Texans is likely to be getting the final snicker — no less than in 2024 – with the signing of ex-Titans Azeez Al-Shaair and Denico Autry. What’s enjoyable is Al-Shaair signed with Tennessee final offseason on a one-year deal after additionally being pursued by the Texans and head man DeMeco Ryans, who coached Al-Shaair in San Francisco. The Texans weren’t about to let the hard-hitting linebacker get away a second time. 

This rivalry is all the time a low-key good one. Having Jordan Poyer leap from the Payments to the Dolphins ought to add a bit of further spice. The veteran security has had quite a few stops within the NFL, however he actually hit his stride with the Payments, incomes first-team All-Professional honors in 2021. The Dolphins had some key names depart this offseason, together with DT Christian Wilkins (who went to the Raiders), however Poyer gives some stability on the again finish of the protection. 

This may not be the primary sport you consider in relation to the Ravens’ 2024 opponents. However security Geno Stone signing with the Bengals needs to be among the best strikes in free company — or, no less than, the very best transfer no one is speaking about. The Bengals wanted some assist in the secondary after shedding key items over the previous few years, together with Jessie Bates and Chidobe Awuzie. Stone, who simply recorded seven INTs and 9 passes defensed in a breakout 2023 season for Baltimore, is a younger cornerstone for Cincy’s protection who got here at a reasonably reasonably priced value (two years, $15 million). 

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