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Super Bowl Teams Look For Rare Return

Posted on July 26, 2013 by Dean Hybl
Joe Flacco and the Ravens hope they will again be hoisting the Lombardi Trophy following the 2013 season.

Joe Flacco and the Ravens hope they will again be hoisting the Lombardi Trophy following the 2013 season.


For millions of Americans it is “Christmas in July” as most NFL Training camps are now open and the start of the regular season is now just six weeks away.

At this point, even for those already betting on the NFL online, it is difficult to predict the future for each of the 32 teams. But as training camps begin there is optimism in all camps that 2013 will be their year to lift the coveted Lombardi Trophy.

Of course, the team that hoisted the trophy a year ago was the Baltimore Ravens. While they signed quarterback Joe Flacco to a lucrative contract, they will be without many of the familiar faces that helped them claim the championship a year ago.

The loss of future Hall of Famers Ray Lewis (retired) and Ed Reed (not resigned and playing for the Houston Texans) will certainly leave a leadership void on defense, but from an on-the-field standpoint there are several other losses that could be more significant. Leading tackler Bernard Pollard, top sacker Chad Kruger and linebacker Darnell Ellerbe are three additional defensive players that must be replaced.  In addition, the trade of wide receiver Anquan Boldin to the 49ers will put added pressure on Flacco and the other receivers on the squad.

Which 2012 Super Bowl Team Has Best Chance of Playing in Super Bowl XLVIII?

  • Neither (67%, 2 Votes)
  • San Francisco 49ers (33%, 1 Votes)
  • Baltimore Ravens (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 3

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Many felt the window for the Ravens was closing last year and though Flacco should now be a cornerstone for years to come, the team seems to be prepared to take a slight step back and reload for their next title run.

Their opponents in the Super Bowl, the San Francisco 49ers, have some motivation to return to the title game in 2013, but they also have some question marks.

Colin Kaepernick and the San Fransisco 49ers hope to become the first losing team in 40 years to win the Super Bowl the next year.

Colin Kaepernick and the San Fransisco 49ers hope to become the first losing team in 40 years to win the Super Bowl the next year.

Can Colin Kaepernick perform for an entire season at the level he displayed over the second half of the 2012 season? Will the likely loss of Michael Crabtree due to his Achilles tendon injury be offset by the addition of Boldin?

You can bet that third year head coach Jim Harbaugh will do all he can to get the 49ers motivated, but they say returning to the dance is often much harder than getting there in the first place. In fact, the last team to win the Super Bowl after losing the title game the previous season was the undefeated Miami Dolphins in 1972.

Part of the challenge for the 49ers will be the quick turnaround within their own division.

It is hard to believe that it was just in 2010 that the Seattle Seahawks won the NFL West with a losing record. Now, as we prepare for 2013 arguably the two best teams in the NFC, the 49ers and Seahawks, hail from the division. Add an improving St. Louis Rams squad and the Arizona Cardinals with new quarterback Carson Palmer and it could be an interesting year in the NFC West.

While it seems unlikely that the Harbaugh brothers will both return to the Super Bowl this season, you can guarantee that both will field competitive teams and do everything they can to stay in the hunt.

As the Ravens proved last season, once you are in the playoffs, anything can happen.


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