The San Francisco 49ers are coming off a 34-31 Super Bowl loss to the Baltimore Ravens back in February. The team was close, but came up short on their final redzone offensive play.
As a team, the 49ers are not out of gas. They are still young with a lot of talented players. However, the NFC West is no joke division now. The Seattle Seahawks, St. Louis Rams and Arizona Cardinals all have added talent in key positions. But, for now, it’s the 49ers’ division to lose.
NFL History proves that the Super Bowl loser is not likely to return to the “big show.” In fact, only five Super Bowl losing teams have returned to the game. Two of those five have won. About 30% of Super Bowl losing teams miss the playoffs the following season. However, around 32% make it to the Divisional round and lose.
We had an opportunity to speak with the league’s best inside linebacker duo last Saturday at Navorro Bowman’s football camp in Maryland. Both Patrick Willis and Bowman say the team will not fall into a post Super Bowl slump. “We were close,” said defensive captain Patrick Willis. “We were just a few plays from bringing home that trophy. This year, it’s one of those things where we can’t rest on that. With us, it’s all fuel to the fire. We’re building on it.”
The key, it seems, is to not buy into the hype that you’ve arrived. Just because you made it once, doesn’t mean you can do it again. That’s why this game of football is so fascinating. You just never know what team could show up and show out each season. And Patrick Willis’ counterpart — Navorro Bowman seemed to believe the same thing. “Maintain,” said Bowman on what it takes to not fall into a post Super Bowl slump. “What I do is, always remember where I came from. If I do that, I’ll continue to work hard and do the things that’s got us this far.”
Bowman had an interesting take on it. Instead of focusing so much on what the team did wrong — he believes that reflecting back on what got them so far and building on it is what’s really essential.
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