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Join the informed writers of The Times' editorial board in lively discussions at our blog, Opinion Northwest.

Topic: Super Bowl

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February 4, 2014 at 6:07 AM

Seahawks Super Bowl win raises awareness about brain injuries

Seattle Seahawks owner Paul Allen holds the Vince Lombardi trophy after Seattle won Super Bowl XLVIII at MetLife Stadium on February 2, 2014 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Seahawks beat the Broncos 43-8. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

Seattle Seahawks owner Paul Allen holds the Vince Lombardi trophy after Seattle beat the Broncos 43-8 in Super Bowl XLVIII on Sunday. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

The Seattle Seahawks gave the world a heck of a game Sunday night. Now it’s time for the 12th Man and all football viewers to give a little something back. How about some attention on the issue of traumatic brain injuries among current and former football players?

Not to be a Debbie Downer in the midst of this town’s post-Super Bowl euphoria, but this is a good time to praise Seahawks owner Paul Allen for investing in traumatic brain injury (TBI) research here in Seattle. Read this Nov. 20, 2013 Seattle Times news story on Allen’s $2.4 million donation toward research. Shortly after, the editorial board published this opinion:

By emulating the latest investment, other NFL owners would stand to gain value and credibility with fans who increasingly care about balancing game-time thrills and the long-term health of athletes.

In a Jan. 31 Forbes.com Q&A, Allen reiterated that he is working closely with the league:

We’ve talked extensively with the league about the kind of research that should be done and that we want to do. We’ve specialized until now on the genetic characteristics of brains and how cells are affected by different conditions. Now we’re going to get some brain tissue from a bunch of different sources. You can have concussion trauma from all sorts of things, like IEDs in Iraq and motorcycle accidents. We’re going to look at some of this tissue and see how it differs from some of the tissue we’ve already scanned and have in our data banks to see how genetic characteristics have changed. But it’s going to take us a few years to get a better handle scientifically, at a very detailed level, what happens when you get a concussion. We’re cooperating with some of the same scientists that the league is working with. We’ve talked about everything from helmets to measuring impacts in real-time on the field.

Last month, CBS News reports the NFL made a smart decision to invest millions more into research through a partnership with the National Institutes of Health. The league can’t afford to ignore this problem.

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Comments | Topics: concussions, football, NFL

February 3, 2014 at 9:17 AM

Seattle Seahawks, Super Bowl Champs

Super Bowl Champs. How sweet the sound. The pure delight of the Seahawks’ 12th Man fans is part of the magic of Sunday’s extraordinary win. Yes, an extraordinary victory. The Denver Broncos, and their knighted, sainted quarterback, Peyton Manning, were expected to be all sorts of trouble. Would the Seahawks be competitive? Yes, of course. Could the…

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Comments | Topics: Broncos, seattle seahawks, Super Bowl

January 31, 2014 at 6:30 AM

Ford, Christie pick Broncos

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford offered some crack sports analysis and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie weighed in with a similar opinion. Both predict the Denver Broncos will beat the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLVIII on Sunday. Christie thinks Peyton Manning will lead his team to victory in a close game, Denver by three points. Ford expects…

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Comments | Topics: 12th Man, Broncos, seahawks

January 31, 2014 at 6:08 AM

Seattle Seahawks, Super Bowl and sex trafficking

Opinions are mixed on just how much Super Bowls really attract sex trafficking, but several stories this week  by CBS News, The New York Times and The Christian Science Monitor place a spotlight on this widespread, illicit crime ahead of the match-up between the Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos.

By Thursday morning, New York’s attorney general announced the arrest of 18 people suspected of running prostitution and drug rings in Manhattan for “high-end clientele” in town for Sunday’s game.

So here’s the message to the 12th man traveling east for the game: Have fun and represent your hometown. Don’t get caught doing you know what.

New Jersey officials are cracking down, too. Gov. Chris Christie has taken a beating in recent weeks for his staff’s shenanigans, but his blunt talk is worth paying attention to. Check out these tweets:

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Comments | Topics: seattle seahawks, sex trafficking, Super Bowl