By any reasonable measure the Philadelphia Eagles were the best team in the NFC, at least until quarterback Carson Wentz went down with a season-ending injury.
The Eagles stumbled down the stretch, both figuratively and literally, but had built up enough of a lead in the Conference to claim the top seed in the post-season.
With back-up signal-caller Nick Foles at the helm, Philadelphia was promptly inserted as the underdog when hosting the Atlanta Falcons in the Divisional Round at Lincoln Financial Field.
The experts expected last year's NFC representative in the Super Bowl to win through, but the Eagles embraced their underdog role and won an untidy game 15-10 to stun the collective wisdom.
The same scenario was repeated in the NFC Championship game against a good Minnesota Vikings side aiming to be the first team in NFL history to play the Super Bowl in their own stadium.
However, once again Philadelphia did not read the script with Foles connecting on 26-of-33 for 352 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions to book their passage to the US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis for Super Bowl LII with the 38-7 triumph.
There the Eagles will be the underdogs once more against a New England side that will be appearing in its eighth title game in 17 years, a quite magnificent record in an era of supposed parity in the NFL.
Quarterback Tom Brady and head coach Bill Belichick have been anointed the greatest of all-time, even as some hold out for the San Francisco combination of Joe Montana and Bill Walsh.
Win a sixth Super Bowl together and it will be hard to argue with the greatest label.
New England are 2.70 to win Super Bowl LII, with the Philadelphia Eagles 1.50.
View all American Football lines