We all we got. We all we need.
Can you feel that, 12’s? Do you feel the adrenaline permeating out of your body? For me, I’ve experienced excitement, anxiety, arrogance, nervousness, and anger over the past 12 days.
Two very long days. This has been a long week. I’ve been reading as much as I can and everywhere I look, I see narratives that don’t paint us in the best light. I’m not trying to be a victim here, but you feel it, too. You feel the media trying to craftily spin the Seahawks as thugs and villains, unworthy of even being here. If you’re anything like me, you can say that you enjoy being the underdog and the team that gets little respect and a big part of you means that, but another part of you hates it.
I had to ask myself why. Why does it bother me? Why does it bother you?
Because we’re 12.
I fully believe that nearly every member of the Seahawks sees us as an extension of this team. They feed off our noise. They feed off of our confidence. They know that we unequivocally have their backs and they have ours, too. Why did Richard Sherman jump into the stands to embrace a group of 12’s after the NFC Championship Game? I always look at that picture and smile because Sherman looks like a crazed man that knows he is amongst an extension of his team—his people, who will have his back no matter what. He didn’t get here alone.
After that game, Pete Carroll praised the 12’s to our guys and told them that it was our time—that we deserve this. At that moment, I knew we were going to win this game. I saw the reaction on the player’s faces and I knew that the Denver Broncos were about to get hit with something that they never saw coming.
Why did more than 30,000 people show up and send the Seahawks off to NYC/NJ in style? Because like them, we feel that familial bond. A buddy of mine told me he thought that the whole 12th Man thing was stupid and forced. He said it felt like we were a separate entity from the team we rooted for because "you are so prideful about your silly moniker that isn’t even original." Taking a deep breath and counting to five, I told him that he was wrong. We’re 12’s because the Seahawks make us that way. We’re loud because that is what the team we love demands of us. We’re not out there catching passes and making hellacious blocks to spring a big run, but we’re in the midst of our opponents every time we take the field at the loudest stadium on the planet—a stadium that, much to his surprise, has been sold out for every home game since it opened in 2002. That kind of shot his "Seattle only loves their teams when they’re winning" argument to hell, because the past 12 years haven’t exactly been cake.
I look at Russell Wilson, our second-year quarterback and I buy into him completely. He’s a high-quality leader that has just so happened to throw 52 touchdown passes and be the only quarterback in NFL history to have a passer rating of 100 in his first two seasons. I look at the 27 games our team has won in two years with him at the helm and the 17-1 home record. I listened to a Giants fan at work who said that he is a gimmicky quarterback—a product of a well thought out system. He’s merely a flash in the pan and will go the way of Jason Campbell in the very near future. I listen as my neck reddens and I feel like I could punch a hole in the man’s throat so he would stop spouting nonsense because he’s making my ears bleed and lowering my IQ at the same time. I tell him that he’s wrong and that there isn’t another quarterback on the planet that I would rather have piloting our offense and being the leader of this team for the next 10-15 years. And I wouldn’t. I don’t think many of you would, either.
I watch the videos of Marshawn Lynch at Media Day and I read shameful articles like this that make me want to explode. Our running back, the focal part of our offense, does not hide who he is. He doesn’t like talking to the media. He wants to do his talking on the field with his play. What has happened with Lynch has been nothing more than school yard bullying, but it’s protected under the guise of responsibility to one’s job and it’s expected—no matter what. Reporters need their stories and I respect that they have a job to do, but there’s more than a hundred other guys who will give you all you need to print your words. I heard John Clayton spout that Lynch’s unwillingness to engage the media had nothing to do with anxiety because "he’s fine in smaller, one-on-one type settings." While that might be true, I never knew Clayton was working on a Psychology degree on the side and had earned some extra letters to put next to his name. I’m not trying to say that Lynch’s behavior is anything related to mental illness, but it seems, at least to me, that he does have some serious anxiety issues when it comes to big crowds and media sessions. Just leave the man alone. If the NFL says he fulfilled his obligation, let it go. Beast Mode was about to risk writing a $100,000 check to not have to talk and I think that speaks volumes.
I get in defensive mode quick with this team. I am like a parent and that’s weird because there are players on this roster who are older than me. But the bottom line is that this is our time. I felt it, as did you, after the playoff game in Atlanta last year. We heard it after Wilson spoke and we saw that vision that he was embracing because we were embracing it, too. This team is brash. This team is confident. This team knows that when they put it together, they’re faster, they’re stronger and we’re louder than everyone else.
I have always been that fan who has been careful with my words, never wanting to be painted as a homer. But the truth is simple—I’ve known this team was going to win the Super Bowl after they overcame a mountain of odds in Houston earlier in the season. Championship teams battle back and win games like that and that is exactly what the Seahawks did—on the road. When Byron Maxwell collapsed in the end zone after the Immaculate Deflection, I knew that this was just the beginning.
Two days and the Seahawks will be Super Bowl Champions. Two days, and WE will be Super Bowl Champions. I’m tired of the noise and exhausted of the media. 24 years and it’s all coming to this.