Daily Archives: October 12th, 2011

Packers 5-0 start rare for Super Bowl champs

Green Bay Packers vs. Carolina Panthers - Lamb...

Image by eytonz via Flickr

Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’ is a biweekly blog published every Wednesday and Sunday with a bonus “SIX STATS…” posting every Friday.

With their 25-14 win over the Atlanta Falcons last Sunday night, the Green Bay Packers became the seventh Super Bowl champion in NFL history to start the following season 5-0. But let’s take it a step (or two) further…

When you consider that the Packers won the last two regular season games in their Super Bowl season, followed by their playoff wins and a 5-0 start this season, the Pack is only the fourth team in NFL history to accomplish that feat. Finally, with wins in their final two regular season games, four playoff wins and a 5-0 record so far this season, the Packers are the only team to accomplish that feat. The other three teams that won their last two regular season games in their Super Bowl season, won their playoff games and went 5-0 in the first five games the following season won just three playoff games whereas the Packers won four playoff games in their Super Bowl season.

Here are the seven Super Bowl champions that started the following season with at least a 5-0 record:

Team, Super Bowl season                 Wins to start the next season

Chicago Bears, 1985                                                                                 6-0

San Francisco 49ers, 1989                                                                     10-0

Denver Broncos, 1997                                                                             13-0

St. Louis Rams, 1999                                                                               6-0

New England Patriots, 2003                                                                  6-0

Indianapolis Colts, 2006                                                                        9-0

Green Bay Packers, 2010                                                                        5-0 (as of Oct. 9, 2011)

WE INTERRUPT THIS BLOG FOR A TRIVIA QUESTION. What do the 2009 Super Bowl champion New Orleans Saints and the 1967 Super Bowl champion Green Bay Packers have in common? Answer at end of the blog.

Here’s a few more stats looking at how well Super Bowl champions did through their first five games of the following season:

* Nine of the 45 Super Bowl champs had a losing record after their first five games the following season. One team, the 1987 New York Giants, were 0-5 after winning the Super Bowl the previous season.

* The 1999 Denver Broncos lost their first four games following their Super Bowl victory. They won Game Five.

* If you consider their two-game winning streak to end the 2010 regular season, their four wins in the 2010 playoffs and their five-game winning streak to start this season, the Packers are currently on a 11-game winning streak. The 2003 Super Bowl champion Patriots ended the 2003 regular season with 12 straight wins, won three playoff games and won their first six games of 2004 to have a 21-game winning streak. The Packers would have to finish with a 16-0 regular season record in 2011 to top the Patriots mark.

* In case you were wondering, the 1972 Miami Dolphins went 14-0 in the regular season, won three playoff games then lost their second game in the 1973 season for a streak of 18 straight wins. The 1971 Dolphins ended their season with a loss to the Dallas Cowboys in the Super Bowl.

TRIVIA ANSWER: The 2009 Saints and ’67 Packers are the only two teams in NFL history to lose their last two regular season games and go on to win the Super Bowl that same year.