In an effort to build a golden brick road that paves the way to the Super Bowl’s golden anniversary, the NFL’s newly released schedule includes 19 match-ups from past Super Bowls. Of course, five decades have transpired, so there’s no assurance that the Packers-Chiefs of 2015 will even remotely resemble the Packers-Chiefs of the year man first walked on the moon. But a handful of the rematches have captured a powerful combination — a game with the potential to be great mirroring a past Super Bowl that is also remembered for its greatness. Here are four upcoming big game rematches with both historical power and current potential:
1. Packers vs. Broncos, Super Bowl XXXII. John Elway’s first ring at the age of 37, powered by the heroic efforts of running back Terrell Davis, made this the stuff of legend in the Mile High City and one of the greatest Super Bowls in history. When the newest versions of these squads meet on November 1, the duel between Aaron Rodgers and Peyton Manning has the potential to pique the nation’s interest and even foreshadow a potential rematch in that historic Super Bowl by the bay.
2. Patriots vs. Giants, Super Bowls XLII and XLVI. Sure, the Giants haven’t exactly been a powerhouse in recent years, and the Patriots are world champions. But has a perceived mismatch ever altered anything when these teams have met in the past? Just mention the names David Tyree and Mario Manningham, and Giants fans remember the jubilation of knocking off the Pats. They have no reason to think it can’t happen again on November 15.
3. Rams vs. Steelers, Super Bowl XIV. The final score, a 31-19 Pittsburgh victory, doesn’t indicate how exciting this Super Sunday was, with a young upstart Los Angeles Rams squad nipping at the three-time Super Bowl champions lead and carrying a 19-17 lead into the fourth quarter. The Steelers dominated the late minutes of the game and earned Terry Bradshaw and Chuck Noll their fourth rings. In 2015, neither team figures prominently on the pro football landscape, but the question marks surrounding both mean that the contest on September 27 could help reveal which team has the tools to sniff the postseason again.
4. Bills vs. Giants, Super Bowl XXV. This big game made the phrase “wide right” sufficient for telling an entire story of Buffalo heartbreak, a missed field goal that led to an unprecedented string of futility. But lost in the memories of Scott Norwood’s errant kick is the fact that it was a truly great game, with the two teams matching each other in most statistical categories. With the Bills’ offseason reloading efforts yielding talent like LeSean McCoy and Percy Harvin and the Giants bringing established producers like Eli Manning and Odell Beckham Jr., there’s reason to be optimistic about the potential for an electric rematch on October 4.
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