On Bill Simmons’ podcast on Tuesday, Aaron Schatz of Football Outsiders — the influential advanced stats and analysis website — talked about why it’s going to be so hard for the Seahawks to win back-to-back Super Bowls.
Here’s his take:
“The reason [the Seahawks] can’t repeat is because it’s hard to win in general and there are other good teams. There’s nothing special about repeating, in my mind. I don’t think there’s anything special about it. What you had in the last few years are great teams after a championship that were upset in the first round of the playoffs. You can’t tell me the 15-1 Packers of 2010 were not a great team just because they got upset in their first playoff game.”
We’re currently in a dark age for NFL dynasties.
After the 49ers, Cowboys, and Broncos all won back-to-back Super Bowls in the 1990s, the NFL has only had one repeat champion (the 2004-05 Patriots) in 16 years.
There are a bunch of theories for why this is. Some say it’s mental (you get every other team’s best shot, players get complacent, etc.). Others say it has to do with attrition (free agents leave for big-money deals after winning the Super Bowl).
Schatz’s explanation is the simplest: it’s just hard to win Super Bowl these days, no matter who you are.
Football Outsiders released its annual Super Bowl odds data on Wednesday. Here are the three most likely teams to win the Super Bowl:
- Denver Broncos (13.9% chance)
- Green Bay Packers (10.6% chance)
- Seattle Seahawks (10.2% chance)
Even for the very best teams, the odds are winning the Super Bowl are small.
There’s a 86% chance the Broncos (the Super Bowl favourite) don’t win the super Bowl.
To say it another way, if we assume for argument’s sake that the Broncos will also have a 13.9% chance of winning the Super Bowl next year, the odds of them winning the next two Super Bowls are 1.9%.
As they get set to defend their title against Green Bay in Week 1, the numbers are simply against the Seahawks.
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