It’s no secret that repeating a Super Bowl champion is a tall task. It’s been made even harder these days due to free agency, which begins its fourth decade in the NFL in 2023.
The last club to win back-to-back Lombardi Trophies was the New England Patriots in 2003 (XXXVIII) and 2004 (XXXIX). A couple of teams were in position to do so in recent years. The Seattle Seahawks failed in 2014, the Pats fell short in ’17 and the Kanas City Chiefs lost in 2020. All had won Super Bowls the previous season.
It’s also not easy to lose a Super Bowl and then bounce back and win an NFL title the following year. The aforementioned Pats fell to the Philadelphia Eagles in LII and the defeated the Rams in LIII. Before that, it had happened only twice in Super Bowl annals.
First things first. It’s worth noting that the Chiefs saw offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy leave for Washington. Meanwhile, the Eagles have replaced both their offensive and defensive coordinators as Shane Steichen and Jonathan Gannon are the new head coaches at Indianapolis and Arizona, respectively. As for the players…
Key Player Departures For The Super Bowl LVII Teams
The defending NFL champions parted ways this offseason with pass-rusher Frank Clark. However, other performers such as wide receivers JuJu Smith-Schuster and Mecole Hardman signed with the Patriots and Jets, respectively. Both tackles have moved in as Orlando Brown Jr. joined the Bengals and Andrew Wylie was signed by the Commanders. Safety Juan Thornhill left for Cleveland.
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As for the Eagles, the defending NFC champions lost a key starter on both sides of the trenches. Defensive tackle Javon Hargrave is now a member of the San Francisco 49ers, while guard Isaac Seumalo left for Pittsburgh. Running back Miles Sanders led the team with 1,269 yards rushing and ran for 11 scores but signed with the Carolina Panthers.
Other key defensive losses include safety Chauncey Gardner-Johnson (Lions) and linebacker Kyzir White (Cardinals). The latter followed former defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon to Arizona.
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The Chiefs have a new left tackle in former Jaguars’ blocker Jawaan Taylor. Defensive end Charles Omenihu finished with a career-best 4.5 sacks with the Niners this past season. Former Seahawks’ first-round pick Rashaad Penny is now a member of the Eagles, as are safeties Terrell Edmunds (Steelers) and Justin Evans (Saints).
Of course, general manager Brett Veach and Howie Roseman hope to work their usual magic for Kansas City and Philadelphia, respectively. The former has 10 selections in April’s draft, the latter has only six picks but two are in the first round. It’s safe to say the fun has just begun.
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