The Seattle Seahawks won Super Bowl XLVIII in a beat-down fashion, 43-8 over the Denver Broncos. This was their first Super Bowl win in franchise history. The matchup was touted as the number one defense versus the number one offense. The saying goes “offense wins games, but defense wins championships,” and that couldn’t have been more applicable to this game.
Peyton Manning and the 2013-14 Denver Broncos are the best offense in the history of the NFL. You wouldn’t have known that watching the Super Bowl. Seattle made Manning, who threw for an NFL record 5,477 yards and 55 touchdowns, look like an average quarterback. Manning completed 34 of 49 passes for 280 yards and a touchdown, but also threw two interceptions, one of which was returned by Super Bowl MVP Malcolm Smith to the house.
Seattle boasted the best defense in the league this season, allowing just 14.4 points per game, nearly 10 points less than the NFL average of 23. The Broncos scored 37.9 points per game in the regular season and were held to just eight in the biggest game of the year. The opening offensive play for Manning and the Broncos saw a high snap that sailed into the end zone, which resulted into a safety. The Seahawks got the ball on the free kick and eventually kicked a field goal. The first defensive snap of the game would set the tone for the entire game, as the Seahawks manhandled the highly powered Denver offense throughout the game.
There were questions swarming all over the place on whether or not that Seattle offense could keep up with Denver’s. Not only did it keep up, they obliterated Denver, scoring 43 points, five points higher than Denver’s season average. Russell Wilson looked like a quarterback who has been to multiple Super Bowls, yet this was his first one in just his second season. He showed a great deal of poise in the pocket, especially on third down. A lot of credit goes to the offensive line of Seattle, who allowed no sacks and allowed Wilson to scramble around the pocket and fire the ball to one of his nine receivers who caught passes. Seattle’s offense, which again, many people questioned, going into the game, became the first in NFL history to not allow a sack or turn the ball over.
The question at hand now is whether or not this team can sustain this over the course of the next decade. General Manager John Schneider has assembled a quality team that deserves to be in the conversation of whether or not it can become the NFL’s next dynasty. Coaching is everything in this league and Schneider landed himself a quality coach four years ago in Pete Carroll, who is now one of just three coaches in the history of football to win a National Championship and a Super Bowl. The other two coaches to accomplish such a feat are Jimmy Johnson and Barry Switzer. Carroll is one of the best football coaches who get the most out of each and every single player on the roster. He is a coach who believes in his players and believes they can succeed. His beliefs became a reality in the Super Bowl, in convincing fashion.
Another key area of success in the National Football League is franchise quarterbacks. Seattle has just that in Wilson. Here is a guy who is a naturally gifted athlete, being drafted in both the NFL and MLB that has shown signs that he is going to just get better and better as the years go by. Wilson is just 25 years of age, so he has a ton of time to keep improving and leading this team to bigger and better things. The third round draft pick of last year’s draft is already more accomplished by winning the Super Bowl than Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III, who were drafted first and second overall respectively. Those two quarterbacks got all the hype and attention, but nether have even been to an AFC or NFC title game.
Marshawn Lynch, who came over in a trade from the Buffalo Bills in 2010 and has proven to be a great addition. “Beast Mode” as he is called, doesn’t do a lot of talking, but shows why he is a good player on the field. Percy Harvin, who was acquired from Minnesota in early 2013, and then given a long term extension, is a player who can change a game with his open-field speed. In the Super Bowl, Harvin returned the opening kickoff of the second half for a touchdown. He is a dynamic player in this league.
On the other side of the ball is a great defense, which has to be considered one of the best defenses in NFL history. The secondary, also known as the “Legion of Boom” has a lot of upside, especially if they can stick together. Richard Sherman, who is considered to be the best cornerback in the NFL by a lot of people, leads the way, followed by safeties Earl Thomas & Kam Chancellor. Sherman is still in his rookie contract, with one year remaining, so he will obviously be paid a lot higher after this upcoming season. The defensive line did something in the Super Bowl that no other team could this postseason; get pressure on Manning. Of Manning’s two interceptions (one by Smith and the other by Chancellor) were caused by the pass rush of defensive end Cliff Avril, who is a free agent after the 2014 season. This defense allowed just 14.4 points per game in the regular season and 13.3 points per game in the post season.
This offseason, Seattle will look to resign kicker Steven Hauschka, defensive tackle Tony McDaniel, cornerback Walter Thurmond, and wide receivers Doug Baldwin and Golden Tate. If this team can bring these guys back and draft players that can help their team even more, they could very well repeat as champions.
No matter what side of the ball it is, this team, this franchise is a close-knit group who truly believes in one another. Certain players may shine and flourish, but Carroll has this team playing as just that, a team. If Schneider and his front office can keep this team together with how the salary cap is structured, we could very well be looking at a dynasty that could win multiple Super Bowls. The city of Seattle deserves this moment and the potential moments in the upcoming years. So the question is out, can the Seattle Seahawks become a dynasty?