The 1972 Miami Dolphins and 2007 Patriots are the only teams to ever remain undefeated in the regular season. Is there a team capable of joining this exclusive club this year?
Nobody’s Perfect…Or Are They?
It has been 48 years since Don Shula’s Dolphins steamrolled their way to a 14-0 regular-season record and then vanquished their three postseason foes en route to their first Super Bowl victory and the single greatest season ever recorded. Miami would cop another Lombardi Trophy the following year after registering a 12-2 regular-season mark but even in the vaunted Dan Marino era, the Fish could not bring another world title back to Miami.
The 2007 New England Patriots are the closest thing we have seen to perfection besides the ’72 Dolphins. Tom Brady and Randy Moss were unstoppable and the Pats roared to a 16-0 regular-season record while winning two of their playoff games before getting upset in the waning moments of Super Bowl XLII.
We have witnessed a smattering of 15-1 teams over the years but perfection is elusive and below we will ponder which teams have a viable shot at running the gauntlet from September through January. Without further ado, let’s discuss the contenders.
Will any team go 16-0 in the 2020 Regular Season? (Yes +1000/No -5000) with BetOnline
Kansas City Chiefs (+2500)
Some, including myself, would reason that you could get more bang for your bet by betting a few teams straight up to go 16-0 in the regular season rather than getting all of them for +1000. The logic is fairly simple in that we all know which two teams have a legitimate chance at accomplishing this generational feat and Kansas City is one of them.
Last year’s Super Bowl champions are poised to repeat but let’s not forget that as good as they were, Patrick Mahomes and his crew were not perfect as evidenced by their four regular-season losses to Indianapolis, Houston, Green Bay, and Tennessee. This season the Chiefs are tied with Carolina for 18th in strength of schedule as their opponents average a .500 winning percentage from last season.
And although the combined average of their opponents’ records is rather ho-hum, and certainly avails itself to the Chiefs punishing several stiffs on the docket, we cannot overlook more than a few daunting foes including the Patriots, Bills, Bucs, Saints and of course, the formidable Ravens…in Baltimore no less! That showdown occurs in Week 3 and if the Chiefs can defeat a goliath like Baltimore in its own crib, then it would be a huge step in the right direction.
However, there would still be 13 more games to play after that one and if they do defeat the Ravens there is always the looming specter of a hangover the following week against the New England Patriots traveling to Arrowhead. Sure, Brady is gone but Belichick is still there and is now joined by former MVP Cam Newton. Would it shock anyone if the Chiefs defeated the Ravens on the road, only to lose to the Patriots at home the following week? We’ve all seen it happen before.
Baltimore Ravens (+2500)
Many of the platitudes extended to Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs apply to Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens. The only difference is that the Ravens fell flat when it counted most, a first-round loss to the Titans, while the Chiefs were on a mission and would not be deterred.
Ironically, one of the best teams in the league has the weakest strength of schedule this year. Yes, that’s right, the Ravens’ opponents this year had a .438 winning percentage last year. Let’s also remember that the Ravens had the best regular-season mark in the league last year when they went 14-2 and were poised to make a deep run in the postseason but were derailed by Tennessee.
Unlike the Chiefs, the Ravens have it easy which is why they are included in my NFL picks as the team most likely to go undefeated. Obviously, Baltimore’s biggest game is against Kansas City at home but before and after that Week 3 clash it’s pretty clear sailing with the only real threats coming in Week 10 in New England and Week 13 at home against Dallas. That is a much more palatable slate than the one facing Kansas City so if you have to make a choice, put your money on Jackson and the Ravens.
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