Super Bowl XLVII: Surprising Trends Could Predict the Winner

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Super Bowl XLVII: Surprising Trends Could Predict the Winner
Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

In any given year, ask the average NFL fan, “Which playoff team will win the Super Bowl?” Their answers will typically include the following: 

“The team with the hottest quarterback.”

“Momentum is what matters, so whoever was on a roll going into the postseason.”

“Defense wins championships, therefore the winner must be highly ranked in this area.” 

Until the 2012 Super Bowl, I would have responded to the question with those same answers. But when the New York Giants became the first 9-7 team to win the “Big Game,” I reconsidered. 

Prior to the 10-6 New York Giants upsetting the undefeated New England Patriots after the 2007 season, the only other 10-6 SB winner in the entire history of the game was the 1988 San Francisco 49ers.  The 2010 Green Bay Packers were also SB winners with a 10-6 regular season record. 

That means within five years, three teams with records that barely had them making the playoffs in the past ended up winning the Lombardi Trophy. 

Clearly, something was afoot. 

It turns out that starting in the 2006 NFL season, a lot of preconceived notions started falling by the wayside. What I believed, and what most fans believed, about winning the Super Bowl did not always apply. 

So we will take a little excursion through the land of statistics, where much of what we accept as the truth is proven wrong. At least a majority of the time.

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