Posted by Andy Benoit
ESPN.com’s Pat Yasinkas points out an interesting fact about the NFC South. Since the NFL’s divisional realignment in 2002, 12 times has a last-place team finished first in its division the following year. Six of those 12 times involved the NFC South. All four NFC South teams have accomplished this feat. In fact, it’s happened every year with the exception of 2008:
• 2003 Carolina Panthers. Went from 7-9 to 11-5 and reached the Super Bowl.
• 2004 Atlanta Falcons. Went from 5-11 to 11-5.
• 2005 Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Followed a 5-11 season with an 11-5 year.
• 2006 New Orleans Saints. Jumped from 3-13 to 10-6.
• 2007 Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Went from 4-12 to 9-7.
• 2009 New Orleans Saints. Followed an 8-8 season with a 13-3 record and a Super Bowl championship.
For what it's worth, the Bucs finished last in the NFC South last season.
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