Saturday, January 19, 2008

Much ado...and at least one answer

There's a lot being made of the Giants 9 game road winning streak going into Green Bay, and not to take anything away from the Giants who have been road warriors this season, but the Packers haven't been slouches at home, going into this game with an 8-1 record at Lambeau this season.

How about this statistic for home field advantage - the Patriots have won 13 straight at the Razor, last losing to the Jets over 14 months ago. Also, the team is undefeated in Championship games at Foxborough, and undefeated in post-season games held in Massachusetts in sub-freezing temperatures since Bill Belichick took over the team.

The hosting teams have four Super Bowl rings in five appearances and are 6-2 in this round of the playoffs, the second loss was by Tom Brady in last season's match-up in Indianapolis. Brady is 3-0 in championship games held in Foxborough.

As for the answer...

Teresa posed a question to me - has the AFC East hosted the best and worst teams in the NFL before this season? Yes. The first time the East held the dubious distinction was in 1984 when the Dolphins and a rookie Dan Marino led the league with a 14-2 record while the Buffalo Bills brought up the rear with a 2-14 record.

All of this has inspired the final note...a note on futility -

The Arizona Cardinals, the longest active franchise in professional football - actually predating the league currently known NFL - hasn't won a championship since 1947. The team was founded in 1899 under the name the Morgan Athletic Club on the South Side of Chicago. It later became the Racine (Street) Cardinals, then the Chicago Cardinals, St. Louis Cardinals, Phoenix Cardinals, and finally the Arizona Cardinals.

In 108 years this team has won two championships, an average of one every 54 years. Their last title was 20 years before the Super Bowl.

This team did Chicagoans a favor by moving from the Windy City.

The teams that haven't even made it to the Super Bowl include the Browns, Cardinals, Lions, Saints, Texans and Jaguars. As far as opportunities - All but the Texans and Jaguars were in existence at the beginning of the Super Bowl Era (technically the Saints for the second). The Texans and the Jags have been around for, combined, less than 20 Super Bowls (the Jags first year was 1995, the Texans 2002).

Then there are those who have made it to the big game only to lose - Eagles, Bills, Vikings, Oilers/Titans, Bengals, Chargers, Falcons, Panthers, and Seahawks. Unless the Chargers can get past the Patriots tomorrow, it means that the winner of this Super Bowl will come from the pool of 16 winners of the 41 previous Super Bowls.

Of the three active teams in the playoffs that previously won, all are multiple winners - the Giants with two (1986, 1990), the Packers with three (1967, 1968, 1996), and the Patriots with three (2001, 2003, 2004). Other multiple winners include with five each - the Steelers, 49ers, and Cowboys; with three are the Raiders and Redskins; and with two are the Dolphins, Colts, and Broncos.

Of the 41 Super Bowls already played, 11 teams account for 35 of the titles - if you're wondering why the math is off, I think it's because of the whole affair between the Cleveland and Baltimore with the Browns' move and subsequent name change, however, I might just be missing a team in there.

Either way, it's likely that a franchise that has already won a Super Bowl will be getting fitted for another set of rings come February.


Teresa said...

Wow. Thanks for the history lesson and good luck tomorrow. I am pulling for a Pats-Packers SuperBowl.

Kevin Smith said...

No problem, and I'm with you - I think the Pats-Packer Super Bowl makes for the most compelling story line. Sure, Chargers-Giants would rekindle the whole Eli-Philip thing, but I really hate the Chargers, and (while I've rooted for them in the past) I am not that thrilled with this Giants team. That said, should the Chargers get by the Pats, I will be rooting for whoever comes out of the NFC game.

Teresa said...

If the Chargers get past the Pats I think I will puke. Rivers and Company don't deserve to represent the AFC with the way they have behaved and disrespected the two best teams in football.

Last time I checked they don't have any banners in the rafters.

I hope Brady and Moss and Brady and Welker and Brady and whoever else shred them like lettuce.

Why did the Colts D have pick that game to not show up??