Seahawks not a good bet for Super return in '07

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Seahawks not a good bet for Super return in '07

Feb. 10, 2006
By Clark Judge
CBS SportsLine.com Senior Writer
Tell Clark your opinion!


Now that Super Bowl XL is complete, the question is: Who's likely to make it to Super Bowl XLI? I don't know, either, but I can tell you who probably won't.

Will the Seattle Seahawks please stand up?

The Seahawks were the losers of Super Bowl XL, and that all but disqualifies them from contention in 2006. Not because they might not re-sign free agents Shaun Alexander or guard Steve Hutchinson or defensive tackle Rocky Bernard.

No, because they were the unlucky loser of this season's most significant event.

Teams that lose Super Bowls historically fail the following years, and don't take it from me. Take it from Philadelphia. Or Carolina. Or Oakland. Of the past seven Super Bowl losers, six didn't return to the playoffs. What's worse, all but Tennessee -- which lost Super Bowl XXXIV to the Rams -- failed to have winning records.

You can look it up.

Philadelphia ended a streak of four consecutive appearances in conference championship games with a 6-10 finish this season. Carolina was 7-9 after losing to New England in Super Bowl XXXVIII. Oakland? The Raiders were 4-12 the year after losing to Tampa Bay in Super Bowl XXXVII.

The past five teams to lose Super Bowls have a combined record of 31-49 the following year, and don't say you weren't warned, Seattle. Sure, the Seahawks play in the league's weakest division, but there are no guarantees when you're talking about a Super Bowl jinx.

Philadelphia last season was the class of an NFC East that seemed improved but not up to the Eagles' level ... until Terrell Owens started yapping, and starters began showing up on the injured reserve list instead of the field.

Mighty St. Louis seemed like a lock in the NFC West in 2002, too, but then Kurt Warner was hurt, and the team went in the jar -- finishing three games behind first-place San Francisco. It had one winning year the past three.

That doesn't mean Seattle can't win its division. It can. In fact, it should. But the prospects of returning to a Super Bowl aren't what you'd call encouraging. No club that lost a Super Bowl returned the following year since Buffalo did it in 1993. That's 12 consecutive years, folks, and that's what you call a trend.

More encouraging to Seattle is that of the past 12 Super Bowl losers, five returned to the playoffs. But look at the fine print: Of those five, only one -- Tennessee -- did it in the past seven years. Combine that with the difficulty of returning to Super Bowls in consecutive seasons, and you can make your travel plans now for next February, Seattle fans.

Better not make it Miami.

http://www.sportsline.com/nfl/story/9220382
 
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