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Here’s What You Didn’t Know About This Year’s Super Bowl Contenders

Ah, the Super Bowl. The Magnum Opus of North American sports – even in this strange football season with no or limited fans. After a few weeks of play, we see some teams solidify themselves as Super Bowl, while a few teams Super Bowl LV odds improve.

Here are some facts about Super Bowl LV contenders you may not know.

Kansas City Chiefs

The reigning Super Bowl champs once again look like a juggernaut, and if they make another trip to the Super Bowl, they should be favourites over any team they face.

However, that was not the case for the Kansas City Chiefs when they made their first Super Bowl appearance in 1970. The Chiefs, representing the AFL, entered Super Bowl IV as a ten-point underdog, against the Minnesota Vikings – marking the fourth straight Super Bowl the AFL team was a double-digit underdog.

Despite being the underdog, the Chiefs emerged victorious, after forcing five turnovers and holding the Vikings to 239 yards.

This win, coupled with the Jets win in Super Bowl III, helped the legitimacy of the AFL and showed the NFL-AFL merger (which happened after the Super Bowl 1970) would have competitive balance.

Baltimore Ravens 

The Ravens have been one of the most successful teams in the NFL since they relocated from Cleveland in 1996. The team owns a .559 win percentage, and two Super Bowl wins since relocating. However, when the team moved from Cleveland, they made one move that, in hindsight, is head-scratching.

Do you know who the head coach of the Ravens was for their first five days? It was nonother than Bill Belichick.

The team initially assured Belichick his services would be retained after the relocation. However, shortly after the move, the coach was relieved of his services. One can only wonder whether the Ravens – who drafted two Hall of Famers in the first round of 1996 (Ray Lewis and Jonathan Ogden) would be the dominant NFL dynasty of the last 25 years.

Seattle Seahawks

If you were born in the last 20 years or became a fan of the team in the same timeframe, you would believe the San Francisco 49ers are the biggest rivals of Seattle. And while that is true, for those years, from 1976 to 2001, their biggest rivals were the Broncos, Chiefs, and Raiders.

The Seahawks started as an AFC West team but saw little success compared to other teams in their division. The Seahawks made a single AFC Championship appearance as a member of the AFC, compared to nine Super Bowl appearances and five wins combined by the Raiders and Broncos – in the same period.

The move to the NFC has helped the Seahawks, who have made three Super Bowls – winning one.  That is the same as the Raiders and Broncos have combined for since 2002.

“Green Bay Packers Sideline” by Mike Morbeck is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Green Bay Packers

Many fans of the Green Bay Packers are not only fans of the team but part owners. How is that possible? Well, the Green Bay Packers are the only community-owned major league sports team in the United States.

The community-based approach allows the Packers to thrive, despite playing in the smallest NFL market.

Getting Packers stock is not easy. Demand for the stock exceeds supply, despite stakeholders not being able to profit off or trade the stocks.

Shares are typically released when the team is looking to raise funds – usually for stadium improvements. The last time shares were released was in 2011 – the same year the Packers won their last Super Bowl. Another Super Bowl win in 2021 could mean more shares for fans to gobble up as a memento to the franchise’s fifth Super Bowl (16th title overall, dating back to 1929 when they won their first NFL Championship).

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Oh, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Owners of the longest active playoff drought in the NFC and the worst winning percentage in NFL history – a meager .387. The second-worst winning percentage of all-time is the Arizona Cardinals at .425.

For the Bucs to catch the Cardinals in winning percentage – assuming the Cardinals stop operations today and ended existence with a .425 winning percentage – Tom Brady and the Bucs would need to win 47 straight games.

Obviously, that is an impossible task in the NFL, and the goal is to make the playoffs and win the Super Bowl.

There is one positive for Bucs fans. Of the bottom five teams in terms of winning percentage – the Bengals, Falcons, Jaguars, Cardinals, and Buccaneers – Tampa Bay is the only franchise with a Super Bowl title. Will they add a second with Tom Brady? We are not saying they will, but you should never rule out the man with six Super Bowl rings.

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