Saturday, January 29, 2011
History prevalent for both Steelers, Packers
When the Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers take the field in North Texas next weekend, it will be a meeting of two of the most successful franchises in the history of the NFL.
The Packers have won 12 championships in their history, dating back to the pre-Super Bowl era. That’s the most in NFL history by three (Chicago Bears, nine). Meanwhile, no team has won more Super Bowls than the Steelers. Each one of their six championships have come in the Super Bowl era. Pittsburgh’s six titles put them 4th on the “most championships” list.
In addition to most Super Bowl victories, Pittsburgh has tied the Dallas Cowboys for most Super Bowl appearances overall with their eighth. The Steelers are also tied with the Cowboys for most postseason wins all-time with 33.
The Packers entered the NFL in 1921, and the Steelers' first season was 1933 (when they were known as the Pittsburgh Pirates). According to the Elias Sports Bureau, this will be the fourth Super Bowl matching two teams whose history pre-dates the NFL expansion era that began in 1960. The previous three are Super Bowl XIV between the Steelers and Rams, Super Bowl XLI between the Colts and Bears, and Super Bowl XLIII between the Steelers and Cardinals.
The Steelers and Packers have combined to win nine Super Bowls, the highest total entering a Super Bowl for any two teams. According to Elias, this year breaks the record set 15 years ago when Pittsburgh and Dallas met in Super Bowl XXX, having combined to win eight Super Bowls to that point (four apiece).
While the two share a common thread of historical greatness, recent years show significant contrast. The Packers are in the Super Bowl for the first time since the 1997 season (Super Bowl XXXII). The NFC Champion has been a revolving door the last decade: the Packers are the tenth different NFC team in the last ten seasons to reach the Super Bowl.
Meanwhile, the Steelers have advanced to their third Super Bowl in the last six seasons. Over the same span that has seen ten different NFC teams represent their conference in the Super Bowl, only four teams have represented the AFC over that stretch: the Patriots (four times), the Steelers (three times), the Colts (twice) and the Raiders (once).