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Halo 11-19-2009 02:11 PM

Putting the Saints' 9-0 start in perspective
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If you’re a long-suffering New Orleans Saints fan, enjoy the ride as long as it lasts and worry about the consequences later. New Orleans is in rare air.

Only 15 teams won their first nine games from the start of the Super Bowl era in 1966 through 2008.

This decade, though, the lucky few have not been fortunate in the playoffs. Five teams started 9-0 from 2000 to 2008, and three of them lost their first postseason game.

The Kansas City Chiefs won nine in a row at the beginning of 2003, finished 13-3 and fell 38-31 to the Indianapolis Colts in the divisional round of the AFC playoffs.

The Colts started 13-0 in 2005, lost two in a row and could not regain their momentum as the Pittsburgh Steelers upset them 21-18 in the divisional round.

The Tennessee Titans won their first 10 last year before losing three of their last six and dropping an excruciating 13-10 game to the Baltimore Ravens in the divisional round.

Everyone knows what happened to the New England Patriots in 2007. After joining the ’72 Miami Dolphins as the only team with a perfect regular season record, they could not seal the deal, losing 17-14 to the New York Giants in the Super Bowl.

Only the 2006 Colts used their hot start as a springboard to a Super Bowl victory, and they almost belly-flopped before they got there, becoming the first team since the NFL-AFL merger to lose four times after starting 9-0. Having blown a chance at a bye, they beat the Chiefs, the Ravens, the Patriots and the Chicago Bears en route to the title despite finishing with the NFL’s worst rushing defense in the regular season.

Older history is more helpful. Four of the last five teams that started 9-0 in the 20th century went on to win the Super Bowl. The lone exception, the 1990 San Francisco 49ers, lost in the NFC Championship Game to the Giants, another team that won its first nine games.

Overall, six fast starters won the Super Bowl, three lost the Super Bowl, one lost in a conference title game and five lost their first playoff game.

It is too early to predict which category the Saints will fall into this year, but at least Drew Brees and company are in the conversation.

Rugby Saint II 11-19-2009 04:08 PM

Re: Putting the Saints' 9-0 start in perspective
Spock from Star Trek said it best...fascinating.:red:

QBREES9 11-19-2009 10:47 PM

Re: Putting the Saints' 9-0 start in perspective
Its a great start to the season.

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