It took the most unexpected of finishes to set up the finish everyone expected.
The Seattle Seahawks and New England Patriots will meet in the Super Bowl on Feb. 1, a match-up pretty much everyone has been eyeing since mid-October. As defending champions, the Seahawks have a chance to establish themselves as the NFL’s first dynasty since, well, the Patriots a decade ago, and the accompanying story lines are every bit as colorful as you can imagine.
The clutchest young quarterback vs. the old master.
The most versatile offense vs. the lethal Legion of Boom.
Easygoing Pete Carroll and his free-wheelin’ hipsters vs. dour Bill Belichick and the Bionic Team.
Generation Next vs. Aging Veterans hungry for what is perhaps their last chance.
Except none of it happens without an almost implausible rally by the Seahawks.
Down 19-7 with less than four minutes to play, Russell Wilson came out of the funk he’d been in all afternoon to lead Seattle to 15 points in 44 seconds Sunday. The Green Bay Packers kicked a field goal to force overtime, but it only delayed what was once again inevitable.
Working with the precision of a surgeon, Wilson quickly moved the Seahawks down field before finding Jermaine Kearse for the 35-yard game-winner. That would be the same Jermaine Kearse, by the way, who had been the target on all four of Wilson’s interceptions.
“To have a chance to go back to the Super Bowl is extraordinarily fun for us,” Carroll said. “We’re going to do everything we can to go get it done.”
The Patriots, of course, will have something to say about that.
Time was, New England could pretty much pencil the Super Bowl in on its season calendar. The Patriots reached the Super Bowl four times between 2002 and 2008, taking home the Lombardi Trophy as a souvenir on all but one trip.
Source: USA Today | Nancy Armour