Jan 18, 2015; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks strong safety Kam Chancellor (left) and Russell Wilson (right) hold the twelfth man banner as the celebrate their victory over the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship Game at CenturyLink Field. The Seahawks defeated the Packers 28-22 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
With the heart-pounding and incredibly thrilling game that was the NFC Championship now in the books, our Seattle Seahawks are headed back to the Super Bowl for the second time in as many years. This one promises to be much more competitive than last year. This includes a plethora of interesting and key storylines for Super Bowl XLIX .
The traditional pocket passer vs. the new-age scrambling genius
On February 1, Russell Wilson will take on the winningest quarterback in NFL playoff history, Tom Brady, who comes in with 20 postseason wins which is more than 21 different franchises. But at age 26, Wilson is already cementing himself in the record books as he already has 6, good for 20th all-time.
But this matchup is more than just number of wins; it’s about the two contrasting styles of quarterback play in the NFL: the traditional, drop-back pocket passer, and the elite athletes who can beat you with their arms as well as their legs.
Today’s NFL seems to favor the former, as touchdown and passing yardage marks continue to increase with each season. But recently, there has been an emergence of dual-threat quarterbacks, including Russell Wilson, Colin Kaepernick, Cam Newton and RG3. And while these QBs have each had their share of issues and much needed adjustments; but Wilson has far and away been the best of these. He separates himself through his keen sense of awareness in the way he always extends the play with his legs by looking to pass first, even while dodging 300 pound linemen.
Two vastly different styles of QB play will be on display for Super Bowl XLIX, but both will be effective and dangerous.
“U Mad Bro?”
After a week six win over the New England Patriots in 2012, cornerback Richard Sherman tweeted out a now infamous picture of himself yelling at Tom Brady with the caption “U Mad Bro?” Since then, there have been shirts made in honor of Sherman.
The real question at in hand is whether or not Brady will be mad after Super Bowl XLIX, bro. Sherman is having multiple tests run on his elbow this week and there have been reports of an elbow sprain.
But regardless of injuries, you can bet that both Sherman and Earl Thomas will not miss a chance at a second Super Bowl victory in two years. When they take the field, will they be tested? In the 2012 matchup, Sherman and Thomas each finished with a Brady interception, and will look for more to come on February 1.
Having intercepted Aaron Rodgers twice, and holding him to just 178 passing yards, the Legion of Boom will again hope to shut down an elite passer.
Pete Carroll and his old organization
Coach Pete will be doing something only two to other head coaches have ever done, he will face his old team in the Super Bowl. Carroll was the head coach of the New England Patriots for three seasons from 1997 to 1999; he went 10-6 in 1997, 9-7 in ’98 and 8-8 in ’99.
After the ’99 season, Carroll was fired by owner Robert Kraft. When asked if there were any hard feeling going into this game, Carroll acknowledged that, “It’s a little bit personal.” In 2000, Bill Belichick came over from the New York jets and transformed the franchise into the great power we know it as today; but Carroll has created what looks to be the next NFL dynasty in the Pacific Northwest and has hopes to prove it to his old boss, Robert Kraft.