How many teams have won the Super Bowl as a Wild Card?
No matter what seed you are as an NFL playoff team, any team has a chance of winning it all at the right time. These teams have made it all the way to the Super Bowl and left victorious.
Everyone says it is difficult to win a Super Bowl championship as a wild card team but teams have overcome adversity. There have been six teams who have won it all since once they got their ticket in, they never looked back. The years of when the Wild Card teams won it all happened between 1980-2010. Those teams are the Oakland Raiders, Denver Broncos, Baltimore Ravens, Pittsburgh Steelers, New York Giants and Green Bay Packers. These teams struggled throughout the season but when they got into the playoffs, they turned it on at the right time.
In1981, the Raiders became the first team to ever win the Super Bowl when the playoff system expanded. They defined the odds after they lost their starting quarterback for the season due to injury. They came closer as a team under Jim Plunkett who lead them to an 11-5 record and earned a Wild Card birth. They defeated the Philadelphia Eagles by a score of 27-10.
In 1998, the Broncos were the second team to win it all with dominant force that started with a 12-4 record. Denver only played in the Wild Card because the Kansas City Chiefs took the AFC West title due to beating them during the regular season. With an efficient run game and passing attack, the Broncos outscore opponents at will. The run game helped them come from behind to defeat the Packers 31-24.
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In 2001, the Baltimore Ravens were remembered as one of the worst teams to win a Super Bowl. They were considered bad because of their offensive struggles but they relied on their extraordinary defense to win football games. It tremendously helped them in their playoff run win it all. They defeated the New York Giants by the score of 34-7.
In 2006, the Steelers were able to pull off three consecutive road wins which are very difficult to do. It was a tough road for them being able to make the playoffs because they sat at 7-5 in Week 12 of the regular season. They were huge underdogs against the Seattle Seahawks and they were able to upset them by the final score of 21-10.
In 2008, the Giants were the most surprising team to ever win a Super Bowl as a Wild Card. This Giants team was expected to not survive the playoffs but they overcame obstacles unlike ever before. After being down at the half, the Giants were able to rally and score 14 points to keep the Patriots from obtaining a perfect record that season. The Giants defeated the Patriots by the score of 17-14.
In 2011, the Packers were amongst the teams in the playoffs to which many didn’t believe they would do much of anything. The defense worked out to be a very steady group and held up to a certain mediocre standard throughout the season. They rolled through the playoffs and finished their playoff run with a huge win over the Steelers by the score of 31-25.
Next: Super Bowl 51: The epic battle of Matt Ryan vs Tom Brady
Needless to say, anything can happen once you make it to the postseason. It’s not often it happens but it’s possible to go the distance in the grand scheme of things.