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Take 2

A different spin on sports by The Seattle Times staff and readers.

February 6, 2014 at 8:04 AM

Seahawks: National media go Beast Mode, ask if Seattle can repeat

National media has been deservedly praising the Seahawks since Sunday’s dominant victory over the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl. Now many are analyzing how it happened, looking ahead to next season and asking whether the Seahawks can repeat. Here’s a quick overview of media reaction.

“Seattle fans go Beast Mode”

By Terry Blount, ESPN

Seahawks team owner Paul Allen later said more than a million people were on hand. With a new net worth at more than $15 billion, the man certainly is good at counting money, so maybe he knows.

Whatever the number, it was something to see, a victory parade that has to rank among the most impressive ever for any team.

“What an incredible day,” Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said. “Words can’t describe it. The intensity of that crowd was amazing. I can’t imagine [a victory parade] better than that.”

Seattle officials on Tuesday predicted the crowd would reach 300,000. Obviously, they underestimated the passion and love 12th-man fans have for this team, the same way many NFL experts underestimated the Seahawks this season.

“Early Super Bowl favorites for 2014″

By John Clayton, ESPN.com

But don’t underestimate Carroll, GM John Schneider and the Seahawks. They have established a franchise that is a destination point for players. Big-name pass-rushers are willing to come to Seattle for one-year contracts to get sacks and a bigger contract the next year. In an ESPN.com survey, Carroll was voted as the coach players would like to play for the most.

“Can Seahawks become a dynasty”

By Mike Sando, ESPN.com

NFL dynasties, always tough to come by, are nearly impossible in the salary-cap era. No team has come closer than the Patriots to establishing one recently, but New England, for all its numbingly consistent success, hasn’t won a championship since the 2004 season.

The Seattle Seahawks’ young roster and recent success, punctuated by their dominant 43-8 win over the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII, gives them a better chance than most at winning multiple championships over the next several seasons. As for a dynasty in the making? Yes, the Seahawks have a shot at establishing one. …

“Doug Baldwin’s Diary of Super Bowl XLVIII”

By Doug Baldwin, for SI.com

My body has already started to adjust to the adrenaline flowing through my veins. I can feel my body temperature rise as we begin our offensive walk-through. I take a few deep breaths to calm my nerves. With each play call, I envision lining up against the toughest look the Broncos defense can give me. It makes it easier in the game if the defense calls the right play against ours. We walk through our first 15 plays on the call sheet. And now it’s time to wait. Again.

“Richard Sherman refuses to go quietly into the night”

By Robert Klemko, SI.com

All we did was play situational football,” Sherman says. “We knew what route concepts they liked on different downs, so we jumped all the routes. Then we figured out the hand signals for a few of the route audibles in the first half.”

He demonstrates the signs Manning used for various routes, and says he and his teammates were calling out plays throughout the game and getting them right. “Me, Earl [Thomas], Kam [Chancellor]… we’re not just three All-Pro players. We’re three All-Pro minds,” Sherman says. “Now, if Peyton had thrown in some double moves, if he had gone out of character, we could’ve been exposed.”

“Boom: Ball-hawking Seahawk defense takes its place (loudly) in the pantheon of dominant Super Bowl champions”
By S.L. Price, Sports Illustrated

This was Seattle’s first championship since they joined the league as an expansion franchise in 1976.  Before their run to the Super Bowl in 2006 [an XL loss to the Steelers], they had gone a record 21 years without a playoff win, and until this season always seemed a step behind their rivals in San Francisco. But the unique identity created in 2010 by owner Paul Allen, GM John Schneider and coach Pete Carroll — brainy, upbeat and tough – proved perfect for transforming unheralded talent into a smart and singularly fierce outfit.

“Panthers, Bengals, 49ers can rival Seahawks’ defensive dominion”

By Gil Brandt, NFL.com

In a world obsessed with offense, the Seattle Seahawks cut against the grain, using an aggressive, physical defense to shut down the most prolific scoring machine in NFL history. Instead of pouring money and energy into developing a high-octane aerial attack, Seattle put together a bruising collection of defensive linemen, linebackers and defensive backs; the team focused on stopping — rather than emulating — pass-heavy opponents like the Denver Broncos.

“You better believe Seahawks can repeat as Super Bowl champs”

By Vinnie Iyer, Sporting News

With Russell Wilson, Pete Carroll and their dominant defense, the 2013 and now 2014 Seahawks have the formula to not only avoid the Super Bowl hangover, but to pull off the dynastic double.

The 43-8 destruction of the Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII was the largest margin of victory in the Super Bowl since Dallas routed Buffalo, 52-27 a good 21 years ago. Those Cowboys repeated the next season.

While the history helps, it’s the Seahawks’ present makeup that makes their short-term future so promising. Before they marched in Wednesday’s victory parade in Seattle, Carroll already had the team focused on next season with a Tuesday meeting. It’s also nice he coaches many proud players who are driven to be among the best of all time, and not just great for one year.

“Five takeaways from Super Bowl XLVIII”

Zuri Berry, Boston Globe/Boston.com

What happens when an unstoppable force hits an immovable object?

Well, now we know.

The Seattle Seahawks flattened the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII, 43-8, proving that the top defense in the NFL could manhandle the league’s No. 1 offense — historically the league’s most prolific offense — with ease time and time again. The Seahawks then took the beatdown to historic heights, causing us to question whether the Broncos would be the first team to be shut out in Super Bowl history.

“For Seattle celebration, Russell Wilson is an unofficial M.V.P.”

By William Rhoden, New York Times

While the Seahawks’ defense tormented Manning, Russell set the tone with a calm and ease of play that seemed to permeate his team. He did not fumble. He did not throw an interception. He was never sacked. Wilson repeatedly got out of trouble by pivoting and running around the edges, either completing passes to keep drives alive or running for first downs. When touchdown daggers were needed, he delivered them.

While Manning added to his mountain of statistical accomplishments with a record-setting 34 completions, Wilson had far more modest numbers: he completed 18 of 25 passes for 206 yards and 2 touchdowns. He did everything an M.V.P. should do.

The Take 2 blog will go dark for a while, with readers’ submitted essays that usually run there in the Seahawks blog. Want to be a reader contributor to The Seattle Times’ Take 2 blog? Email your original, previously unpublished work or proposal to Sports Editor Don Shelton at dshelton@seattletimes.com or sports@seattletimes.com. Not all submissions can be published. The Times reserves the right to edit and publish any submissions online and/or in print.

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