As I sit here watching a replay of whatever miracle happened today at CenturyLink Field, I'm still in complete shock at the events that unfolded. As a matter of fact, they were more believable when I was watching them live, losing my mind as my pulse reached dangerously high levels. As I sit back with a clearer and more logical state of mind, it seems like I'm watching something that isn't real. Not even Disney could've scripted a more ridiculous ending, and we're talking about the king of the most unrealistic sports movies here.
It has nothing to do with Russell Wilson and how he had to literally flip a switch in an instant from playing the worst game of his career to leading a miracle comeback. When things finally started to go Seattle's way with just over three minutes to play, the wheels in my mind started to turn. I keep thinking on a quote from Apollo 13 when the crew is frantically trying to figure out how they're going to come out of the voyage alive, much like the Seahawks were thinking how they could possibly make a miracle comeback.
"Alright, there's a thousand things that have to happen in order. We are on number eight. You're talking about number 692."
When I look back on this game, I can't help but think how many things had to fall into place perfectly for Seattle to win this game. As soon as things began to turn in Seattle's favor, my mind immediately jumped to asking all those "what if" questions, not paying attention to the fact that we were on number eight while my mind was thinking about number 692. I'll probably miss some things, because this afternoon was still all just a blur, but here is the most comprehensive list of events I could come up with in regards to what needed to happen, and what happened.
- Russell Wilson throws 4th interception, defense needs a quick stop. --- Green Bay's drive last three plays and loses 4 yards, Packers punt ball away.
- Seahawks need a quick touchdown - Three of Wilson's first four passes go for 15, 20 and 26 yards. Seahawks score touchdown in 1 minute and 43 seconds.
- Seahawks need to recover onside kick - Brandon Bostick blows his assignment, jumps for ball when he was supposed to block, bobbles the football, Seahawks recover.
- Seahawks need a touchdown with 2:09 to work with -- Wilson scrambles for 15 yards, hits Luke Wilson for a first down, Beast Mode rumbles 24 yards untouched, proceeds to grab his crotch again, Seahawks lead.
- Seahawks need 2-point conversion to lead by a field goal - Wilson scrambles, avoids pressure, throws practically blind across his body to Luke Willson. Ha Ha Clinton-Dix opts to not go for the ball or make a play, ball somehow lands in Willson's hands for the conversion.
- Seahawks can bend, but can't break - Allow a game-tying field goal, but stopped Green Bay when it mattered most after they moved the ball 42 yards in three plays.
- Must win OT coin toss - Seattle sends out a backup QB, a kicker and a punter as the OT captains, wins coin toss.
- Must gain more yards in one drive than they did the entire first half in order to win - Wilson executes a perfect, game-winning drive. Seahawks go to the Super Bowl.
Those were eight things that needed to happen perfectly, exactly in order, for the Seahawks to win this game. Now of course, you could analyze so many more aspects of this game. For example, what if Mike McCarthy had been more aggressive with his play calling on 4th down early in the game and the Packers scored two touchdowns instead of two field goals? But these were the simplest things that needed to happen, and it still seems impossible it actually all happened. If any one of those eight things above don't occur, it is likely the Packers represent the NFC in the playoffs.
If I had to pick one of those eight moments I thought was most crucial, it's the 2-point conversion. Sure, Seattle had already taken the lead. But by converting it, the Packers couldn't simply just get into field goal range if they wanted to go for the win. For simplicity sake, let's say that Mason Crosby nails the field goal at the end of Green Bay's next drive no matter what. If Wilson doesn't find a way to miraculously see Luke Willson (or whatever he saw because I'm still convinced he did this one blind), the Packers drive down the field and Crosby rips out the hearts of each Seahawks fan in the stadium 68,538 times over. Yes, in this scenario Crosby stands outside the gates and literally rips everyone hearts out in a scene straight out of Indiana Jones. It allowed the Seahawks defense some room for error. Because we've all seen what happens in the playoffs (cough..Falcons..cough) when the Seahawks make a miraculous comeback, only to have it wiped away by allowing the other team to get in range for a game-winning field goal.
But this was a day where everything that needed to go right for the Seahawks fell exactly into place at exactly the right moment. It's something a sports fan can only dream of. You only see these types of endings in the movies, and they still aren't this epic. If the last 5 minutes of this game is redone 1,000 times, Green Bay wins 999 times.
But you see, all you need is one chance. After Wilson's 4th interception, ESPN's win probability data gave the Packers a 96.1 percent chance at winning. Ask Russell Wilson, Doug Baldwin or Jermaine Kearse about that, and they'll tell you as long as there is a 0.01 percent chance of them winning, they believe they can do it. And over the course of one magical hour in Seattle on Sunday, the Seahawks taught this fan base and this city that even when things seem hopeless, you never quit.
Normally, I hate the fact that they sell t-shirts and hats for conference champions. The players are probably forced to wear the shirts as a form of free advertising for fans to go out and buy them. It's never the shirt you want. You want that Super Bowl Champions shirt. But you know what? I'm going to go out this week and buy one, because it's a reminder that no matter how hard things get, sometimes, you just have to believe.