Will the San Francisco 49ers tie the Steelers’ record six Super Bowls? Are you rooting against them?
Today is the holiest of sports days: Super Bowl Sunday. Unfortunately for the Steelers faithful, they have not been practicing the faith for many years. The Steelers last won the Super Bowl in 2008, 15 years ago, and last competed in the title game in 2010.
The San Francisco 49ers have been in the Super Bowl three times since the Steelers’ last appearance, including tonight’s festivities. They haven’t won, however, in three decades. They lost to the Baltimore Ravens in 2012 and then to the Kansas City Chiefs in 2019.
Interestingly, Brock Purdy is the fifth different quarterback set to start a Super Bowl for the 49ers compared to the Steelers’ two. Joe Montana started the first four, followed by Steve Young. The 2012 loss featured Colin Kaepernick, with Jimmy Garoppolo in 2019.
Four different head coaches have brought them to the Super Bowl as well. Bill Walsh took the first three trips, George Seifert following with two. Jim Harbaugh presided over the 2012 loss to his brother, John. This marks Kyle Shanahan’s second trip.
Walsh won three Super Bowls, Seifert the other two. Harbaugh and Shanahan have failed to add to the trophy case, but the latter gets another shot tonight. Can the Kansas City Chiefs stop them? And do you want them to?
Specifically, will you root against the 49ers, at least in large part because you don’t want them to tie the Steelers and New England Patriots for the record of six Super Bowl trophies? Things like this matter a lot more to some fans than to others.
On the one hand, it’s always nice to have bragging rights. On the other hand, it’s like a player dancing in your end zone. If you don’t want him dancing there, don’t let him in. Don’t let him score. The Steelers only have themselves to blame for remaining stuck on six Super Bowls for 15 years.
The Steelers’ 2023 season has been put out of its misery, ending as so many have before in recent years: a disappointing, blowout playoff loss. The only change-up lately is when they miss the playoffs altogether. But with the Buffalo Bills stamping them out in the Wildcard Round, they have another long offseason ahead.
The biggest question hanging over the team is the quarterback question. Is Kenny Pickett the guy? Will he get another season’s reprieve without a serious challenge? How will the team address the depth chart? Do they re-sign Mason Rudolph, one of the few significant unrestricted free agents?
The Steelers are swirling with more questions this offseason than usual, frankly, though the major free agent list is less substantial than usual. It’s just a matter of…what happens next? Where do they go from here? How do they find the way forward?