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The historical significance of the Steelers 7-0 start

The Steelers start has tied the franchise record, and it bodes very well when looking across the league history.

Pittsburgh Steelers v Baltimore Ravens Photo by Todd Olszewski/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers have started their 2020 NFL season with a record of 7-0. It was a big matchup in Baltimore against the Ravens where the victory would hold the top spot in the AFC North. It wasn’t pretty at times, but the Steelers did enough exit the stadium on top.

It is only the second time in franchise history the Steelers have won their first seven games of the season. The only other season was the 1978 Steelers who began their season 7-0 and went on to win Super Bowl XIII over the Dallas Cowboys.

Last week we highlight the Steelers 6-0 start. Now it’s time to update the numbers now that they have pushed their record to 7-0.

In NFL history, there have been 56 teams who have previously started their season 7-0. Since the 1970 NFL merger, there have been 38 teams start 7-0 with all 38 of them making the playoffs. The last team to start 7-0 and not make the playoffs was the 1948 San Francisco 49ers of the AAFC who finished 12-2 but did not win their division as the 14-0 Cleveland Browns was the West Division representative.

Since 1970, 19 of the 38 teams who started their season 7-0 made it to the Super Bowl which equates to exactly 50% of teams. Out of those 19 teams, 10 of them went on to win the Super Bowl with three times having two teams meet in the game who had won their first seven games of the season. The last time two teams met in the Super Bowl who both started the season 7-0 was in 2015 when the Denver Broncos defeated the Carolina Panthers. The next most recent Super Bowl was in 2009 when the New Orleans Saints defeated the Indianapolis Colts. Other year in which two teams who started 7-0 met in the Super Bowl was in 2006 when the Indianapolis Colts defeated the Chicago Bears.

Should the Steelers push their record to 8-0 after their match up with the Dallas Cowboys in Week 9, league history gets into even more elite status. The 26 teams who have started the season winning their first eight games since the 1970 merger have made the playoffs 100% of the time with 58% making the Super Bowl and 31% winning the championship game.

While starting 7-0 does increase the likelihood of going to the postseason, the Pittsburgh Steelers need to keep in mind they still have 9 games remaining and anything can happen in the NFL. Even though the Steelers have seven wins on the season, the only one which really matters is the next one.

On to Dallas.