Earl Thomas may have ushered in impeding doom for the Ravens by predicting the team would be in the Super Bowl this year.
Right now, it is hard to say who even has a shot at beating the Baltimore Ravens in the Super Bowl or who could stop them from getting there. Lamar Jackson is playing well, and the defense is certainly getting the job done. The Ravens do look like the team to beat.
So, it is not hard to understand why Ravens safety Earl Thomas is feeling a little confident about his team. The Ravens do appear to be the team to beat this year. But acting like it is a foregone conclusion that they are going to be in the Super Bowl is a mistake.
Thomas made his comment when asked if Sunday’s game against the 49ers could be a Super Bowl preview:
Anytime someone makes a Super Bowl prediction, the media likes to get as much mileage out of the statement as it can. As could be expected, one of the first people asked about it on the 49ers was a former teammate of Thomas, Richard Sherman:
Sherman’s response is about what you would expect it to be—measured, thought out, and logical. Anything could happen from Sunday until it is time to play the Super Bowl. But predicting your team is going to get there is definitely a bad idea.
Joe Namath may be the only guy ever to predict his team was going to win the Super Bowl and actually win it. But he didn’t make the claim until his team was definitely in the game.
It just doesn’t happen. Whenever guys tend to make those kinds of predictions, they almost always end up being wrong.
Chicago Bears safety Eddie Jackson predicted a Super Bowl appearance for the Bears this season after the team went 12-4 last season and won the division. Lamarr Houston agreed with him. While they are still in the hunt at 6-6, it is safe to say that the Bears will not be in the Super Bowl this year.
He wasn’t alone, though. Trey Burton made a similar claim.
Former Bears wide receiver Alshon Jeffery promised a Super Bowl victory following the 2016 season—which obviously didn’t pan out. But it wasn’t like anyone took him seriously with the Bears coming off a 3-13 season.
Ryan Kalil promised Carolina Panthers fans a Super Bowl win back in 2012 and even took out a full-page ad in the paper but failed to follow through on that one. Another Panthers player, Mario Anderson, predicted a Super Bowl win a few years later. But he too was wrong.
Dak Prescott told a couple of kids he’d be in the Super Bowl last year and sent them there with tickets. As it turned out, he could have used a ticket himself.
Whether it is a humblebrag or a not so humble brag, predicting a Super Bowl win is never a good idea. Such comments are always going to put a spotlight on a team. When the spotlight hits, guys start thinking they have to be perfect. Rather than just play the game, they start to over-analyze and second guess their instincts.
In short—they make mistakes.
Mistakes lead to losses. Should one come during the postseason, that means the promise will go unfulfilled.
There is no sense in making the game any harder than it needs to be. It is okay to feel confident your team will make the Super Bowl, just don’t tell the media.