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The historical significance of the Steelers 10-0 start

The Steelers are continuing to extend their franchise-record start to a season.

Pittsburgh Steelers v Jacksonville Jaguars Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers have started their 2020 NFL season with a record of 10-0. After a dominating road victory, the Steelers return home for a quick turnaround for a Thanksgiving night game so the time to enjoy getting their tenth victory on the season will be short lived.

It is the first time in franchise history the Steelers have won their first ten games of the season. The record which is continuing to grow replaces the 1978 Steelers who began their season 7-0 and went on to win Super Bowl XIII over the Dallas Cowboys.

Last week we highlighted the Steelers 9-0 start. Now it’s time to update the numbers now that they have pushed their record to 10-0.

In NFL history, there have been 26 teams who have previously started their season 10-0. Since the 1970 NFL merger, there have been 16 teams start 10-0 with all 16 of them making the playoffs. The last team to start 10-0 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, 10 of the 16 teams who started their season 10-0 made it to the Super Bowl which equates to 62.5% of teams. Out of those 10 teams, 6 of them went on to win the Super Bowl with only one time having two teams meet in the game who had won their first ten games of the season. The only time two teams met in the Super Bowl who both started the season 10-0 was in 2009 when the 13-3 New Orleans Saints defeated the 14-2 Indianapolis Colts.

Should the Steelers push their record to 11-0 after their matchup with the Baltimore Ravens on Thanksgiving night, league history gets into even more elite status. The 11 teams who have started the season winning their first ten games since the 1970 merger have made the playoffs 100% of the time with 82% making the Super Bowl and 45% winning the championship game.

While starting 10-0 does increase the likelihood of going to the postseason and guarantees a winning season, there is still work to be done. The Steelers host the Ravens in only 4 days and Baltimore is in “must win” mode if they want to have any chance in getting back in the running for the AFC North, yet alone the playoffs. The Steelers have a chance to put their division rivals in a bad spot.

Gobble. Gobble.