Super Bowl history: Ravens are back after more than a decade

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

The Ravens organization may not have as much Super Bowl history as San Francisco, but it's not as if Baltimore is lacking Super Bowl experience entirely.

In the lead up to Super Bowl XLVII, you're likely to hear more than one NFL analyst talk about San Francisco's prestigious Super Bowl history. The 49ers have played in five Super Bowls, winning all five games. They had Joe Montana, Jerry Rice, Steve Young and were coached by Bill Walsh.


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All of those comments are true, but it's important to remember San Francisco isn't the only team with Super Bowl experience. The Ravens have also played in, and won a Super Bowl. In fact, their Super Bowl victory in 2000 is more recent than San Francisco's last trip in 1994.

Led by arguably the most dominant defense in NFL history, the Ravens dominated the 2000 playoffs, culminating in a 34-7 win against the New York Giants in Super Bowl XXXV. Baltimore allowed an average of 5.8 points per game in the playoffs, winning two road games just like the current Ravens squad. Baltimore outscored it's opponents 95-23 in the playoffs.

Just as they were during that postseason, the Ravens were dominant in Super Bowl XXXV. They scored touchdowns on offense, defense and special teams. If not for a 97-yard kickoff return touchdown, they may have pitched the shutout. The Giants gained 152 total yards, including just 86 net passing yards. Baltimore also forced five turnovers in the game, including four interceptions.

The Raven offense didn't light up the scoreboard, but it did enough. Jamal Lewis ran for 102 yards and a touchdown while Brandon Stokley led all receivers with 52 receiving yards. Ray Lewis recorded five tackles and was named Super Bowl MVP.

Lewis is the only member of that team still currently on the roster, but he isn't the only Raven starter with Super Bowl experience. Wide receiver Anquan Boldin played in Super Bowl XLIII with the Arizona Cardinals. Of the 49ers starters, only Randy Moss has played in a Super Bowl.

Going beyond the trip to the 2000 Super Bowl, the Ravens are loaded with playoff experience. Baltimore has made the playoffs five straight seasons, winning eight games during that period. They have just the one Super Bowl appearance, but came up just short of trips to the Super Bowl with losses in the AFC Championship game in 2008 and last season.

Since the 2000 season, the Ravens have played in 20 postseason games, the second most in the NFL during that span. Baltimore has had a lot of success as well, winning 13 games, also good for second most in the league since 2000. The 13 wins are nearly twice the amount of playoff games San Francisco has appeared in over the last 12 seasons. During that time, San Francisco is 4-3 in the postseason, including this season.

Breaking it down to an individual level, its obvious which roster has more playoff experience. The players on the current Ravens roster have combined to appear in over 250 playoff games. San Fancisco's players have combined to play in less than 150 games and that includes 23 appearances from kicker David Akers.

San Francisco may have more history, but despite having four less Super Bowl rings, Baltimore isn't exactly lacking postseason history themselves.

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