As it’s often said, better a December loss than a January loss.
Hopefully, the Denver Broncos got the last loss of the entire season out of their system when they fell to the San Diego Chargers on Thursday night.
As John Fox reminded everyone Friday afternoon, there have been plenty of successful teams that have suffered losses late in the season. Let’s take a look at the past ten Super Bowl winners.
2012 Baltimore Ravens – Finished 10-6 when all was said and done, but lost 4 of the last 5 games including a 34-17 loss to the Broncos.
2011 New York Giants – Lost 5 of their last 8 games to go 9-7 on the year.
2010 Green Bay Packers – Went 10-6 and lost 3 of their last 6 games to end the season.
2009 New Orleans Saints – Ended 13-3 with all of their losses coming in their final three games.
2008 Pittsburgh Steelers – The last Super Bowl winners to have a strong finish to the season. Won 5 of their last 6 to finish 12-2 for the year.
2007 New York Giants – Really faltered after the bye week, losing 4 of their last 8. Ended the season at 10-6 and in second place in the NFC East.
2006 Indianapolis Colts – In Manning’s only Super Bowl win, his team lost 4 of their last 7 to go 12-4 on the year.
2005 Pittsburgh Steelers – Went on a nice streak winning their last 4 regular season games, and finished the season 11-5.
2004 New England Patriots – Went 14-2 with one of their losses coming in week 15.
2003 New England Patriots – Again 14-2, with their only losses coming in weeks 1 and 4.
Six of the last ten Super bowl winners didn’t finish their seasons especially strong. It goes to show that catching fire at the right time and having a relatively injury-free roster really helps at the tail end of the season.
The Broncos can easily finish 13-3 still, and maybe this Chargers loss was the wake up call they needed for January and beyond.