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Saturday, 31 January 2015

Super Bowl 2015: Five Reasons To Root Against The Seahawks

In one of the most highly anticipated Super Bowls in recent memory, the defending champion Seattle Seahawks will square off against the legendary duo of Tom Brady and Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots. The storylines in this game are numerous. We will be witnessing a classic battle between the physical defensive-oriented Seahawks and the high-flying Patriot offense.

According to the Vegas odds, there is no clear favorite, as the Patriots are slightly favored by a 2-point spread. Essentially, this game is a true toss-up. Here are five reasons you should be rooting against a championship repeat for the Seahawks on Super Bowl Sunday:

1. The Legacy of Tom Brady and Bill Belichick

Yes, the legitimacy of the success of the duo of quarterback Tom Brady and coach Bill Belichick has come under intense scrutiny since the report broke that eleven of twelve Patriot footballs during the AFC Championship Game were underinflated. Add in the Spygate scandal of 2007, and there is now serious doubt regarding the legitimacy of the Patriots' success, not during the AFC Championship Game of two weeks, but throughout the Brady-Belichick era. 

However, it's silly to assume that some underinflated balls have catapulted Brady and Belichick to the level of perhaps the greatest coach-quarterback tandem in history, rivaling even that of Walsh and Montana. The Patriots have consistently been among the best teams in football for the last fifteen years. With two Super Bowl rings in four appearances during that period, the Patriots have proven to be today's NFL dynasty. 

If Brady and Belichick can outmaneuver and outmatch the legendary Seattle secondary, it would cement their legacy as among the greatest to ever play/coach.

2. Somebody needs to shut Richard Sherman up

Nobody is doubting the abilities of Richard Sherman. He is undeniably the most complete cornerback in the league and is the closest thing to a shutdown corner in today's game. But when you consistently talk smack to opposing players, brashly declare yourself as the best on national media, and belittle the abilities of others on a nightly basis, you begin treading on dangerous waters.

Eventually, karma will bite you. Sherman's comments and various other antics are likely the cause of others dismissing him as "not good enough" throughout his life and people doubting the ability of his team. But by lashing out at others and throwing derisive comments their way, he has made himself public enemy #1. 

On behalf of all NFL fans who want to see Sherman put in his place, who better to shut him up than Brady?

3. The Seahawks aren't even supposed to be here

Two weeks ago, with five minutes left in the fourth quarter, Seahawks' quarterback Russell Wilson threw his fourth interception of the game with his team trailing 19-7. In perhaps the most stunning come-from-behind victory in postseason history, the Seahawks managed to force a three-and-out against a red-hot Aaron Rodgers, recover an onside kick after it bounced off the hands of a Green Bay receiver, score a touchdown off a miraculous 24-yard scamper from Marshawn Lynch, and then finish their stunned opponents in a single overtime drive.

The Seattle Seahawks did not win that game. The Green Bay Packers simply lost it. Up until that point, the Seahawks were being thoroughly dominated in every aspect of the game. For the first time in the Legion of Boom era, the 'Hawks were getting manhandled on both sides of the ball in their untouchable home stadium. The only reason they were able to escape the game with a victory was a combination of Green Bay late-game execution errors and pure luck.

In reality, the Seahawks should not even be in the Super Bowl. After picking them apart, the Packers simply did not close the game out. Why do the Seahawks, who barely escaped the Conference championship, deserve to win this game more than a Patriot team who dismantled their opponent?

4. Marshawn Lynch is a disrespectful, tactless, inconsiderate, ungrateful breaker of rules

Marshawn Lynch clearly needs attention. With his patented "Beast Mode" identity plastered across all sorts of merchandise, his blatant opposition to basic NFL rules, and his utter disrespect towards the media, Lynch has proven the sole reason he has made of a show of his battle with Roger Goodell and the media is for publicity.

Players in the NFL are generally not huge fans of the media. That's understandable. The media can be excessively pushy, nosy, and sometimes downright impolite. But the players do owe it to the media, and by extension, the fanbase to present themselves in a fashion that well-represents their organization, their teammates, and their sport. After all, the majority of a player's paycheck is generated by fan revenue. Being open with their fanbase is a way for players to repay fans for allowing them to make such huge sums of money.

As seen in his Super-Bowl-week interviews, Lynch doesn't care about any of that. It's clear all that he cares about is football and family, and that's fine. But he does owe it to the media to present himself in an open, approachable fashion for at least the time that is obligated. Instead Lynch chooses to spite the people who put money into his pocket. As fans, we should be rooting against figures like that who misrepresent the great game of football.

5. A Seahawks loss would solidify the notion that the NFL is fair game for everyone

In the new age of NFL football, the only team that has come close to being a consistenly dominant dynasty is the New England Patriots. But the Patriots are not a team that has strung together multiple Super Bowls in a row. The Seahawks are the one team that, should they win, could claim true dynastic supremacy. 

While the Seahawks are in many ways what every team strives to be - tough, competitive, and physical, a win in the Super Bowl would discredit the notion that NFL success is open to everyone. In the NBA and MLB, usually the same teams get to claim regular success, due to having large markets and assets or due to reputation. The NFL, however, has always been a league that has rewarded under-the-radar teams for drafting well and smartly building a team.

Should the Seahawks win, it would destroy this notion of "equal opportunity." It would show that, in reality, only a handful of teams are destined for success every year. To protect the identify of the NFL, it would be best if the Seattle Seahawks do not emerge victorious on Super Bowl Sunday.



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