Jan 28, 1990; New Orleans, LA, USA; FILE PHOTO; Denver Broncos quarterback John Elway (7) is pursued by San Francisco 49ers defensive end Larry Roberts (91) during Super Bowl XXIV at the Louisiana Superdome. The 49ers beat the Broncos 55-10. Mandatory Credit: Manny Rubio-US PRESSWIRE

Question: Does defense still win championships?



Hey everybody I’m back here with another installment of the series. Today’s question, does defense still win championships? This is an old cliché that many believe isn’t true anymore, I am not one of those people. Without further ado, let’s go.

As we all are aware the offenses this day in age are simply overpowering, better than we’ve ever seen before. If we look at 2011 for an example, we can point out Brees’ record breaking season. Also we can look at Gronkowski’s TD record, or even the Packers as a team. Think about this, New Orleans led the league in total offense per game and passing yards per game this year. The one offensive category they didn’t finish in the top five in was rushing yards per game. In fact not one team in the top five in the league of total passing or total offense was in the top five of rushing yards a game.

Now if we look at the defenses of the league, the top five in total defenses are as follows: Pittsburgh, Houston, Baltimore, San Francisco, and the Jets. These teams are all usually the ones you’d think of now when it comes to the top five in the league. Leading the league with an average of 271 yards a game is Pittsburgh, just behind them Houston who gave up 285 yards. All of these teams (with the exception of the Jets) made the playoffs because of their defenses. The 49ers got to the NFC championship with a great defense and a strong running game behind Frank Gore. However, the two teams in the super bowl were not even top 25 in total defense last year, the Giants at 27th the Patriots at 31st.

So all of these numbers just thrown at you suggest that offenses these days are just too much to handle. Maybe it’s because of the rule changes, or maybe because teams are just more focused on passing the ball. I truly believed San Francisco was going all the way last year because of the defense, when they lost to New York in the championship game I was shocked. In that game the Giants’ offense outlasted the niners defense. For me it begs the question, will we ever see a truly defensive team win the super bowl again? And, if next year really is “our year,” will defense win us the big one?


P.S Please again feel free to let me know what you all think. Thanks for reading.


  • BReisinger86

    Balance wins championships, not offence, not defense, not special teams…. But the capability to play all 3 phases at a high level, AND NOT MAKE MISTAKES. I have always said that the only team in the league that can consistently beat the Chargers is…… Drum Roll Please….. The Chargers, As much as i hate the Patriots, you have to respect the fact that they are always in contention for a Super Bowl Ring not because they WOW you in any one phase of the game, but because there main emphasis is on fundamentals… They don’t make mistakes and beat themselves.

    • CindiSpears

       @BReisinger86 Yah, the not making mistakes thing is kind of important too.  We call it lack of discipline… year after year.  FU Norv! (ok, I’ll go get more coffee now)  ha ha

  • CindiSpears

    I have preached this before as well and I am with you. The best offense is a good defense. 

  • biggsybolt

    Did you really ask this question? Your articles are starting to get a little ridiculous …Here’s a little hint on how sports games work…. If you can’t score you can’t win, period, end of story!

    • http://www.boltbeat.com/ RickyRivers

      @biggsybolt I didn’t really ask for your opinion on how rediculous my articles are. I asked you to answer the question right? If you have a problem with the article don’t read it it won’t hurt my feelings. Just saying.

  • MikeTuck

    Football as with sports that incorporate alot of players depend on all to carry, out with all the skill they posess, the responcibility of their position. To some who have great-great atheletes they can get help from time to time. But these are the weaknesses that teams look for. Alot of teams who score to quickly or their special teams play faulters, their defenses may look weaker than others but it’s what the defenses have been given by the other two parts of the equation. And if given rest that same defense can overpower causing turnovers. So the secret is balance of all of the teams parts collectively.
        Therefore in a win, when a QB has a field day it can mean that the other players are doing their best to give their leader the best chance to shine. Or if the offense goes out with the intent of ball controll and first downs without fail, they can keep the defense well rested for the next time their on the field. I think a well rounded team that understands that their all in it together and convey their concerns back and forth can overcome shear talent based teams.

  • Bleu

    for us defense is goin to win it just based on the fact that our offense is good. But with a good defense our offense will become great because it would create more opportunity for our offense to score…….. I would hate to get there and not be able to take the other team out of contention with a great defensive effort.

  • arnie

    i’d say in most cases , no. there have only been two case where this is true. the 85′ Bears, and the 2001 Ravens, but theses a special cases, not the norm.what i will say is, ” Defenses will give a “chance” to win a championship.” to see this you have to look no further than las season, the giants had one the top ranked defenses in the league.. yet so did the 49 ners, Ravens and Steelers. Yet what separated these teams from advancing. Offense. the Giants had a powerful run game, a QB that made throws when he needed to, in big moments. Also they had a Defense that kept giving the Offense more opportunities to score, by forcing 3-n’-outs and turnovers.

    • http://www.boltbeat.com/ RickyRivers

      @arnie I’ve heard that too.