But today's barnstorming 30-3 victory over England completed a magnificent turnaround as Wales retained their title.
Needing to win by eight points to achieve the feat, two second half tries from Alex Cuthbert meant the result was never in doubt. The Cardiff Blues winger raced past Mike Brown to score his first try before lovely hands from Justin Tipuric saw him cross for a second.
Leigh Halfpenny and Dan Biggar kicked 20 points between them for a result that was probably beyond the wildest dreams of most Wales fans.
So how did Wales recover to retain their title? We look at four key areas that sparked the revival.
Under Shaun Edwards, the Welsh defence is usually watertight but their first half capitulation against Ireland was a serious worry. Since Brian O'Driscoll's early second half score in that game though, Wales have remarkably failed to concede a try. That's four and a half games. Three successive away wins over France, Italy and Scotland were anything but pretty but the Welsh blitz defence, led by centre Jamie Roberts, held firm throughout. And with a run of successive victories in the bank, Wales took England to the cleaners to retain their title. Cuthbert showed that Wales do more than kick goals with his second half salvo but at the heart of their win was another top defensive effort. England managed just an Owen Farrell penalty as they were shut out by a blanket of red.
Going into this year's campaign, Wales looked short of forward power with new caps Andrew Coombs and James King called into the squad. But how the whole pack have stood up. With Wales on a run of eight straight defeats, they needed their big men to drive the team on and the likes of Adam Jones, Gethin Jenkins and when they returned from injury, Ryan Jones and Richard Hibbard, did just that. Coomb's influence should not be discounted though and he was unlucky to be dropped for the returning Alun Wyn Jones. But the Ospreys man and the rest of the pack provided the necessary grunt for three away wins. And when they provided another solid platform for their backs today, Cuthbert did the rest to fire Wales to Six Nations glory.
Wales been criticised in some parts for their decision to change around the captaincy but with the likes of Ryan Jones, Sam Warburton and Gethin Jenkins around the squad, Wales were chock-a-block with experience. Jones' calmness brought the best from Wales and when Jenkins picked up the captaincy, he effortlessly led them to their second successive Six Nations title. And let's not forget Warburton. Freed from the captaincy, the Cardiff Blue was at his dynamic best against Scotland and England while retaining a vital role within the squad. He topped Wales' line-out stats and made 12 tackles today in another top performance.
Calm coaching staff
Interim head coach Rob Howley remained calm throughout the autumn as his side struggled to find their form. His mantra, and that of the rest of the coaching staff, was that Wales had not become a bad team overnight as they continued with the same practices that drove them to a Grand Slam and a World Cup semi-final. Howley deserves huge credit for the way Wales turned things around and his selection of Coombs was emphatically rewarded. The smile across the face of the former Wales scrum half when Cuthbert crossed for his second try was a sight to behold - echoing the feelings of the whole nation on a day the Millennium Stadium will never forget.