By JERRY TAPP
The 2018 NFL is one week old. Some team fan bases are excited about the rest of the season while a handful of other faithful are wondering how bad of a season their team will endure.
How important is the first game of the year … specifically, how important is winning Game One in the NFL season to a potential trip to the Super Bowl? Here are 10 stats about winning the first regular season game of the year and how it relates to a spot in the Super Bowl that year.
- Of the 104 teams that have played in the 52 Super Bowls, 86 of them (83.7%) won their first game of that season. Sixteen lost their first game, and two teams had their first contest of the season end in a tie.
- One Super Bowl team lost their first game of that year in overtime: Tampa Bay in 2002 lost 26-20 to New Orleans in OT.
- In 2017, the two Super Bowl opponents, New England and Philadelphia, had different results in their first games of the ’17 campaign: Philly beat Washington 30-17 in Week One while the Pats were a 42-27 loser to Kansas City.
- Green Bay has played in five Super Bowls. In those five appearances, the Pack won their first game of the season four times (1966, 1996, 1997, and 2010) and had a tie game in their first game of the season in 1967.
- The Super Bowl team with the biggest Week One loss was the Patriots. In 2003, the Pats lost Game One 31-0 to Buffalo, yet they made it to the Super Bowl that season. Eight Super Bowl teams lost their first game of that season by 10 points or more.
- Speaking of New England, they have made 10 trips to the Super Bowl. They are 5-5 in Game One in those seasons.
- Seven Super Bowl teams shut out their opponents in Game One of that season.
- In the last 10 seasons, the 20 Super Bowl teams went 16-4 in their first game of the regular season.
- Five teams that won their first game of the season with an overtime victory went on to play in the Super Bowl that season.
- The biggest Week One win by a team that went on to play in the Super Bowl was the Oakland Raiders who won their first game of the 1967 season 51-0. The 1991 Washington Redskins won their first game that year 45-0 over Detroit on their way to a Super Bowl visit.
Follow Jerry on Twitter @StatsonTapp