Greatest Cinderella stories in NFL history

Congratulations to all of you who had Florida Gulf Coast (or Florida Golf Coast according to LeBron James) headed to the Sweet 16 in your March Madness tournament bracket. Oh wait, none of you picked the the Gulfies.

Just kidding, that's not their nickname. I'm sure not many of you even realized their mascot was the Eagles, so let's just assume there aren't many of you who did pick FGCU.

But that's part of the fun of March Madness, the Cinderella stories.  With that in mind, it makes sense to take a look at some of the biggest Cinderella teams in NFL history.

And we're going to go with teams that actually won the Super Bowl. That means the 1979 Los Angeles Rams and 2008 Arizona Cardinals will be omitted from this discussion. Easily two of the bigger Cinderella stories in league history, but they won't quite make it on this list.

And without further ado ...

The Chiefs lost starting QB Len Dawson and backup Jacky Lee. But third-stringer Mike Livingston, along with the team's defense, orchestrated a five-game winning streak. Dawson returned and the Chiefs beat the Jet and Raiders in the AFL playoffs and then knocked off the heavily-favored Vikings in Super Bowl IV.
» Super Bowl IV memories | Biggest upsets

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2007 New York Giants

The Giants finished 10-6, behind the NFC East-winning Cowboys. they had to go on the road to win three consecutive games at Tampa Bay, at Dallas and at Green Bay. The Giants were expected to be a mere speed bump for the undefeated Patriots in the Super Bowl. It didn't work out that way.
» America's Game: Super Bowl XLII | Steve Sabol: Capturing the Moment

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1980 Oakland Raiders

Raiders QB Dan Pastorini broke his leg in Week 5 against the Chiefs, and Jim Plunkett came off the bench to throw five interceptions as the Raiders fell to 2-3. But coach Tom Flores stuck with Plunkett, and the Raiders became the first wild card team in NFL history to win the Super Bowl, as they knocked off the Eagles in Super Bowl XV.
» Super Bowl XV memories | America's Game: John Matuszak

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2001 New England Patriots

The Patriots appeared doomed after they lost Drew Bledsoe and started 0-2. But sixth-round pick Tom Brady led the Patriots to a division title and one of the most unlikely Super Bowl wins ever, as they knocked off heavily-favored St. Louis in Super Bowl XXXVI. Isn't it weird to think of a time when nearly everybody rooted for the Patriots?
» Super Bowl XXXVI memories | Super Bowl XXXVI | The Tuck Rule

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1968 New York Jets

Nobody gave the Jets much a chance in Super Bowl III against the NFL's dominant Colts. But QB Joe Namath, guaranteed and you know the rest. How are the Jets not No. 1? The Jets were pretty good and the Chiefs' win the following year showed the AFL was pretty legit.
» America;s Game: 1968 New York Jets | Spike Lee on Joe Namath | America's Game: Don Maynard

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1999 St. Louis Football Club

St. Louis finished 4-12 in 1998, but there was reason for optimism with new QB Trent Green. Optimism faded, however, when Green went down in the preseason. In entered famed journeyman/grocery clerk/Arena League star Kurt Warner, who engineered one of the most improbable seasons in NFL history. The very definition of a Cinderella.
» America's Game: 1999 St. Louis Rams | America's Game: Marshall Faulk | America's Game: Dick Vermeil

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