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Morning Briefing

History Gives Patriots the Edge

January 20, 1986

Does the fact that Chicago beat New England, 20-7, in the regular season give the Bears the edge in the Super Bowl? History says no.

Starting with the first NFL championship game in 1933, there have been 20 rematches in the title game. In 11 of those, the regular-season loser has emerged the winner.

Most recently, the Raiders have done it twice, against Philadelphia in 1980 and Washington in 1983.

The most dramatic turnaround came in 1940. The Chicago Bears, a 7-3 loser to the Washington Redskins three weeks before, won the rematch, 73-0.

In another big turnaround, the Cleveland Browns came back from a 14-10 loss to Detroit in 1954 to beat the Lions, 56-10.

In 1934, the Chicago Bears were a perfect 12-0, including two wins over the New York Giants, but in the title game, the Giants prevailed, 30-13.

In "the greatest game ever played," Baltimore's 23-17 overtime win over the New York Giants in 1958, the Colts avenged a 24-21 loss to the Giants.

New England Coach Raymond Berry remembers that one. He was the principal target of Baltimore quarterback Johnny Unitas, catching 12 passes for 178 yards, a playoff record.

Add Berry: Steve Myhra, who kicked the field goal that sent the game into overtime, told William Gildea of the Washington Post: "Raymond didn't have any speed, but nobody ran routes like he did. The day before a game he'd walk every inch of the field. You know, he'd find a little slush spot here, a little ice there where he thought he could beat a defender. He covered the field like a prospector."

Add Patriots: Guard John Hannah didn't play for them in the regular-season game against Chicago, but Dan Hampton of the Bears doesn't think he'll make that much difference Sunday.

"We've been looking at him on films and he looks like John Hannah should," Hampton said. "But he's not superman. I think William Perry will do very well against him."

Trivia Time: Name the four running backs from USC who have have been the leading rushers in the Super Bowl. (Answer below.)

Wrote Skip Bayless of the Dallas Times Herald after Tom Landry promised to trade Gary Hogeboom: "If Hogeboom lands in the right spot, he'll stun lots of Cowboys fans with his success. Imagine the Boomer as a Raider, slurping beer with his linemen, hanging in the pocket and radar-gunning deep outs or bombs. That's the Raiders' philosophy, and Hogeboom would match it in personality and arm better than Marc Wilson does."

How good is Bo Jackson? Buddy Martin of the Denver Post asked the question at the Senior Bowl, and here are some answers:

Bill Walsh: "He's explosive, he's fast. He's got great instincts--the best I've seen. He's a Hall of Fame player."

Don Shula: "He has it all from what I've seen. And I've seen them all."

Ken Herock, Raiders scout: "One word. Franchise."

Martin quotes a Bronco assistant coach as saying: "I'd trade our whole draft for him. And throw in their pick of one of our defensive starters."

Trivia Answer: Ben Wilson (Green Bay), 1967; Mike Garrett (Kansas City), 1969; Clarence Davis (Oakland Raiders), 1976; Marcus Allen (L.A. Raiders), 1983.


Scott Hastings of the Atlanta Hawks, denying he got any alumni handouts at the University of Arkansas: "I was so bad that when I shook hands with boosters, they took money out of my hand."

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