With the 2022 NFL regular season in the rearview mirror, there’s now plenty of time to look back at the biggest trolls of the past year.
Perhaps no one did it better than the Detroit Lions after their final game.
Already eliminated from playoff contention, the Lions successfully spoiled the Green Bay Packers‘ postseason hopes with a 20-16 win at Lambeau Field.
With the win, Detroit swept Green Bay for the first time since 2018. The Lions’ postgame tweet fittingly focused on the fact that Aaron Rodgers & Co. finished below .500:
With the playoffs only a few days away, here are the rest of the most creative barbs from the regular season:
The Jets were an underdog in their first six games of the season, but with their win against the Packers, they joined the 2001 Cleveland Browns as the second team in the Super Bowl era to have a winning record through six games despite being underdogs in every game, per ESPN Stats and Information.
The 17-point loss is tied for the Packers’ second-largest home defeat in a game started by Rodgers. Sauce Gardner seemingly enjoyed the trip to Lambeau and celebrated the win appropriately:
Say cheese. pic.twitter.com/Ib0OO0lCWg
— New York Jets (@nyjets) October 16, 2022
Jalen Hurts and Justin Fields nearly both made their marks in NFL history during their Week 15 matchup. With three rushing touchdowns, Hurts ran up his season total to 13, one shy of the NFL record for the most by a quarterback in a single season.
Meanwhile, Fields joined Michael Vick and Lamar Jackson as the only QBs to run for at least 1,000 yards in a season.
However, Hurts’ squad came out on top in a close game, and they acknowledged the win with a play on a childhood classic book series:
Story time with the B̶e̶r̶e̶n̶s̶t̶a̶i̶n̶ Chicago Bears pic.twitter.com/6MJbSen3J3
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) December 18, 2022
The Bengals reached the end zone only once after halftime, but the Joe Mixon show in the first half easily carried them to victory.
Mixon scored five touchdowns, becoming the first NFL player with 150-plus yards and four or more TDs from scrimmage in the first half of a game since Shaun Alexander did it in the 2002 season.
Both Cincinnati and Charlotte, North Carolina, the home of the Panthers, claim to be the “Queen City,” but only one team earned the nickname this season:
🗣️ Will the real Queen City please stand up pic.twitter.com/0biuf793YJ
— Cincinnati Bengals (@Bengals) November 6, 2022
The Raiders’ social media account couldn’t resist a Tuck Rule reference after the win:
— Las Vegas Raiders (@Raiders) December 19, 2022
The ‘Let’s Ride’-ers
Denver Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson inadvertently started a trend when he arrived in the Mile High City. The team posted a behind-the-scenes video of Wilson repeating the phrase “Let’s Ride” during media day, and the sports world immediately made it go viral.
During the regular season, teams also took the chance to use Wilson’s phrase after defeating Denver.
Los Angeles Chargers‘ 19-16 win over Broncos
Wilson completed his first 10 passes for 116 yards and a touchdown in the first quarter as Denver jumped out to a 10-0 lead, but it was all downhill after halftime.
The Broncos’ QB went 5-of-18 the rest of the night, and Chargers kicker Dustin Hopkins hit the game-winning field goal with 2:38 remaining in overtime:
— Los Angeles Chargers (@chargers) October 18, 2022
Kansas City Chiefs‘ 27-24 win over Broncos
Despite a slow start, the Chiefs rallied from a 17-13 third-quarter deficit to beat the Broncos for the 15th consecutive time — and reminded Wilson of his unofficial motto:
Chiefs Kingdom… LET’S RIDE pic.twitter.com/WrJGGx6zmC
— Kansas City Chiefs (@Chiefs) January 1, 2023
Best movie reference
New York Jets’ 31-30 win over Cleveland Browns
The Browns went old-school for their new midfield logo this season by bringing back Brownie the Elf.
However, Brownie’s debut did not go as planned for the home team in their Week 2 loss to the visiting Jets.
After the game, the Jets’ social media team referenced Will Ferrell’s character Buddy the Elf in a tweet, poking fun at Cleveland’s logo:
— New York Jets (@nyjets) September 18, 2022
Atlanta Falcons‘ 23-20 win over Cleveland Browns
The Falcons posed a question to Super Bowl LVII halftime performer Rihanna in their celebratory postgame Twitter post — but they haven’t heard back yet:
— Atlanta Falcons (@AtlantaFalcons) October 2, 2022
Nike’s “SNKRS” mobile application served as inspiration for two New York squads this season. The app displays a “Got ‘Em” message when users successfully order sneakers, but the Jets and Giants used the message to troll their opponents.
New York Jets’ 24-20 win over Pittsburgh Steelers
Ahead of Week 1, the Steelers claimed to have “black Air Force energy” after coach Mike Tomlin gifted the team with pairs of Nike’s black Air Force 1s.
Unfortunately for Pittsburgh, the team lost three consecutive games after winning their season opener. The Jets sent the Steelers a not-so-subtle reminder after their 10-point comeback victory in Week 4:
— New York Jets (@nyjets) October 2, 2022
But the Giants made sure to avoid expanding his footwear options after defeating the Commanders in Week 15:
— New York Giants (@Giants) December 19, 2022
Old Bay, on behalf of the Baltimore Ravens following their 23-20 win over the Browns
Cleveland attempted a pregame troll, but it was a futile effort as Baltimore escaped with the win:
Apparently they think Super Bowls are overrated too https://t.co/PXM4XsSADt
— OLD BAY (@OLDBAYSeasoning) October 21, 2022
Although the Ravens didn’t respond to the tweet, Old Bay fired back with some barbs of its own — and showed up at M&T Bank Stadium on game day:
— OLD BAY (@OLDBAYSeasoning) October 23, 2022