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August 23, 2013

Best of Newell- No. 2, 2007: "Juggernauts" kickstarted most recent run of dominance

It was the greatest four year run in program history.

Four Super Bowl appearances, three Super Bowl titles, and a 50-2 record from 2007-2010, a run that is unmatched in the long storied history of Gloucester football.

That run started in the fall of 2007, when a hungry group of players put it all together and embarked on one of the most dominant seasons, and the most dominant postseason performance the program has ever seen.

The 2007 team gave itself a nickname, “The Juggernauts.” It’s pretty bold to refer to oneself as a juggernaut, but the 13-0, Division 2A state champions backed up its nickname with a blend of talent, grit and swagger.

“That was a special year,” said 07 quad-captain Adam Quinn, a starter at middle linebacker and guard that season. “As freshman we started calling ourselves ‘The Juggernauts’ because we wanted to eventually become that team that went undefeated.”

The 07 Fishermen, Paul Ingram’s first of three Super Bowl teams, were on every NEC coaches radar screen at the start of the season because of their scary talent. Gloucester entered the season with returning starters at 14 of the 22 positions from a 2006 team that finished 9-2. Simply put, Gloucester was the odds on favorite in the NEC.

Like all great teams, its talent was only the start of what made the 2007 team special. It was also one of the toughest, grittiest groups the program has seen. Its big guys were intimidating, its little guys were intimidating and big hits were at a premium on both sides of the ball.

“I think we just had this grit to our team that nobody else had, both offensively and defensively,” Quinn said. “I had been with the varsity team since my freshman year and I saw a lot of tough guys, but that 2007 team was the toughest group of guys I’ve ever been around.”

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