After Super Bowl 49, 98 NFL teams have participated in the biggest game of any professional sport. Ninety-eight teams sit at the top of the NFL pantheon as the greatest teams in league history.
What if that’s not true?
The 98 teams that played on the world’ biggest stage may not be the best 98 teams that the NFL produced throughout the league’s illustrious history. What if some of the teams that played in the Super Bowl got there by luck? What if some of the 98 teams that have participated in the Super Bowl weren’t even the best teams in their divisions, much less the leagues that they played.
The 8 worst teams to play in the Super Bowl share some common attributes. Statistically, the teams sat in the middle of the NFL pack during the regular season. They pulled at least one major upset to get to the Super Bowl.
Here are the 8 worst teams to play in the Super Bowl:
1. 2003 Carolina Panthers
The 2003 Carolina Panthers won just two games during the regular season by more than six points. Seven of the team’s 11 victories came by less than three points. This means a break here, a break there determined whether the Panthers went 11-5 or 5-11. The eleven victories came by a combined margin of 21 points, or only 1.3 points per game. Quarterback Jake Delhomme recorded a touchdown to interception ration of 19 to 16. The Panthers got by the skin of their teeth during 2003 by stopping opponents inside of the red zone. As heavy underdogs to the St. Louis Rams in the playoffs, the Panthers somehow pulled off one of the greatest playoff upsets in NFL history. The team almost topped the Rams upset by giving the New England Patriots a run for the money during Super Bowl 38.