From 0-2 to Super Bowl? Bengals, Titans look to join these teams that made the big game after rough starts

Joe Burrow and the remainder of the protecting AFC champions surely anticipated higher. Fresh off the franchise’s first Super Bowl look in over 30 years, the Bengals‘ convention identify protection is off to a tumultuous get started. Cincinnati is 0-2 after shedding a couple of three-point video games to Pittsburgh and Dallas. 

The Bengals’ offensive woes are in all probability extra regarding than Cincinnati’s winless get started. Burrow, sacked 70 instances a 12 months in the past, has already been sacked 13 instances this season regardless of the Bengals’ heavy funding of their offensive line throughout unfastened company. Despite the problems, Burrow and his teammates stay resolute of their unravel. 

“O-and-two is tough, but there is no panic,” Burrow stated, by the use of The Athletic. “There’s a lot of ball left to be played.”

“We are itching for a win right now,” working again Joe Mixon stated. “No need to panic, but at the end of the day, we got to start going. We know what we got in our locker room. Our defense has been playing their ass off. We have to do whatever we can do on offense to counter what’s going on. It’s an unfortunate situation but we got to be the ones to dig ourselves out.”

The Titans, one in every of the teams the Bengals vanquished throughout final 12 months’s playoff run, also are 0-2 after getting overwhelmed soundly in Buffalo on Monday night time. The Titans and Bengals are the maximum sudden of the 5 teams that are lately 0-2 coming into the steady season’s 3rd week. 

It’s no longer a well-traveled highway, however teams that have began 0-2 have certainly reached the Super Bowl. Four teams have triumph over 0-2 starts to succeed in the big game. Three of the ones teams left the Super Bowl website hosting the Vince Lombardi Trophy, proving that it is not all the time the way you get started, it is the way you end that makes all the distinction. 

Here’s a look at the 4 teams the Bengals and Titans will take a look at to join in the historical past books when it is all stated and completed. 

  • Finished 12-4, 1st in NFC East
  • Defeated the Bills 30-13 in Super Bowl XXVIII

Main explanation why for sluggish get started: Emmitt Smith, the league’s main rusher throughout the earlier season, neglected the first two video games over a freelance dispute. Without Smith, the protecting champion Cowboys have been blown out via Washington in Week 1. A 3-point loss in a Super Bowl rematch with Buffalo was once sufficient to persuade Jerry Jones to get Smith at the bargaining desk and again on the box. 

Main explanation why for speedy end: With Smith again, the Cowboys received six directly video games, with Smith rumbling for a career-high 237 yards towards the Eagles. Smith closed out his MVP season with an all-time efficiency in the Cowboys’ regular-season finale towards the Giants. Despite coping with a separated shoulder, Smith ran for 168 yards and stuck 10 passes for 61 yards and a ranking as Dallas received in extra time. 

In the playoffs, Smith tallied 418 all-purpose yards and 4 touchdowns. He received MVP honors after dashing for 132 yards and two touchdowns in the Cowboys’ moment consecutive Super Bowl win over Buffalo. 

  • Finished 11-5, 1st in AFC East 
  • Lost to the Packers 35-21 in Super Bowl XXXI 

Main explanation why for sluggish get started: Turnovers plagued the Patriots throughout their first two video games. They coughed up the ball 4 instances — with one main to the game’s first landing — in a Week 1 loss to Miami. They took an early lead in Buffalo the following week earlier than a unique teams fumble arrange the Bills’ go-ahead ranking. New England later tied the ranking earlier than Jim Kelly threw the game-winning landing in the ultimate mins. 

Main explanation why for speedy end: They by no means utterly solved their turnover factor, however for the maximum section the Patriots have been in a position to triumph over their miscues for the rest of the season. New England’s protection, closely influenced via assistant head trainer Bill Belichick, compelled a slew of turnovers that continuously made up for the offense’s miscues. The Patriots’ offense dedicated 21 turnovers throughout the season’s ultimate 14 video games. New England’s protection, led via Pro Bowler Willie McGinest, linebackers Chris Slade and Ted Johnson, and defensive backs Ty Law, Lawyer Milloy and Willie Clay, compelled 36 turnovers (together with the postseason) after the 0-2 get started. 

Along with the protection, the Patriots gained big particular person efforts via quarterback Drew Bledsoe, working again Curtis Martin and rookie receiver Terry Glenn. Each participant was once named to the Pro Bowl whilst main an offense that completed moment in the league in scoring. 

Turnovers, alternatively, reared their unsightly head in Super Bowl XXXI. The Patriots in short led the appreciated Packers however have been in the end completed in via 4 giveaways. In defeat, New England’s protection didn’t permit reigning league MVP Brett Favre and the Packers’ high-scoring offense to check in a unmarried level in the moment part. 

2001 Patriots 

  • Finished 11-5, 1st in AFC East
  • Defeated the Rams 20-17 in Super Bowl XXXVI 

Main explanation why for sluggish get started: New England’s offense scored simply 20 issues in its first two video games. The Pats put simply 3 issues on the board towards the Jets in Week 2 earlier than Bledsoe was once knocked out of bounds via Jets linebacker Mo Lewis overdue in the game. The damage was once serious, as Bledsoe was once hospitalized to deal with a sheared blood vessel in his chest. 

Main explanation why for speedy end: With Bledsoe on the mend, Tom Brady entered the lineup for the Patriots’ 3rd game of the 12 months towards Peyton Manning and the Colts. New England ruled the game in all 3 aspects, and would run their document to 5-4 coming into a Sunday night time showdown with the Rams and their “Greatest Show on Turf” offense. The Patriots misplaced a tightly contested game, nevertheless it was once sufficient for Belichick to claim Brady the starter for the remainder of the season. 

The 2001 Patriots by no means misplaced once more, profitable their ultimate six video games of the steady season to clinch a playoff berth. They have been the beneficiaries of the mythical “Tuck Rule” in the divisional spherical earlier than scary the Steelers in the AFC identify game. They raced out to a 17-3 lead towards the Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI earlier than profitable the game on Adam Vinatieri’s last-second box objective. 

2007 Giants 

  • Finished 10-6, second in NFC East
  • Defeated the Patriots 17-14 in Super Bowl XLII 

Main explanation why for sluggish get started: The Giants protection allowed 80 issues throughout the season’s first two video games. Tony Romo torched New York for 345 yards and 4 ratings in Week 1. Brett Favre threw for 286 yards and 3 touchdowns in Week 2, as the Giants’ season seemed to be over earlier than Week 3.

Main explanation why for speedy end: Led via a line of defense that featured Michael Strahan, Osi Umenyiora and Justin Tuck, the Giants protection performed massively higher after its rocky get started. The Giants allowed not up to 20 issues in 5 in their subsequent six video games to transfer to 6-2 at the halfway level. 

At 10-5, the Giants had already clinched a playoff berth when the 15-0 Patriots got here to the town in Week 17. Despite having not anything to play for, the Giants performed their starters and just about ended the Patriots’ best possible season. They did not win that night time, however 5 weeks later, on professional soccer’s largest degree, the Giants defeated the Patriots in the second-largest disenchanted in Super Bowl historical past. Eli Manning’s late-game heroics will proceed to survive in Super Bowl lore. 


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