Only one other team has been this close to making NFL history.
And now, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers just might become that squad.
When Tampa Bay won its divisional game in the NFC playoffs against the New Orleans Saints on Sunday, the Buccaneers became just the second team in the 55-year Super Bowl era to advance to a conference championship game in the same year their stadium will serve as the host site of the Super Bowl.
Now, it’s a matter of whether the Buccaneers can have history all to themselves.
With a win at Green Bay in the NFC championship game this coming Sunday, Tampa Bay would become the first team in NFL history to play in the Super Bowl in its home stadium.
As hard as it is to believe, this really hasn’t come close to happening much in the 55 years of the Super Bowl.
The only other team to reach a conference championship game in the same year its stadium was the Super Bowl site was the Minnesota Vikings, which reached the NFC championship game in 2018.
Minnesota’s dreams of playing in its own stadium for the Super Bowl were crushed emphatically by the Philadelphia Eagles, which routed the Vikings in Philadelphia, 38-7.
The Eagles then went on to beat the New England Patriots to win Super Bowl LII in Minnesota.
The San Francisco 49ers played and won Super Bowl XIX at Stanford Stadium in Palo Alto, California, and the Los Angeles Rams played in Super Bowl XIV at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California. But while those sites were practically next door, they weren’t their actual stadiums.
The teams that won the most games in the regular season when their stadiums were the host Super Bowl sites were the 2014 Arizona Cardinals and the 1978 Miami Dolphins, but both teams lost in the first round of the playoffs.
This year, Tampa Bay became just the eighth team in NFL history to win 10 or more games during the season it would host the Super Bowl.
While Tampa Bay is only one step from making history, the Buccaneers have a daunting task to try and achieve it.
The Buccaneers will have to leave their warmth and sunshine and go up to frigid and snowy Green Bay to try and beat the Packers, the top seed in the NFC.
Tampa Bay did rout Green Bay during the regular season, 38-10, but that was in October, in Tampa.
Much like the Buccaneers were against the Saints after losing two regular-season games to New Orleans, Green Bay will likely be ready for payback -- and lives to play in its tundra-like conditions.
It’s for sure going to be an icy rainbow the Buccaneers will have to navigate in Green Bay, but if the Buccaneers can somehow pull it off, there will be more than just a pot of gold waiting on the other side.
It will be NFL history, with a chance to win a Super Bowl at home.