Anna is a Seattle Seahawks fan, and I am coming to terms with it.
They are the “local” team, so she’s not jumping on a bandwagon. And they are going to the Super Bowl for only the second time in their history. Win or lose, their success at this early point in her life will probably make her a fan for life.
I know. My passion for my favorite team is rooted in a Super Bowl appearance. It was January 14, 1973. I was seven years old (only a year younger than Anna is now) and was living in the D.C. suburbs when the Washington Redskins faced the Miami Dolphins in Super Bowl VII.
Two weeks earlier, the Redskins had beaten their greatest rivals, the Dallas Cowboys, in the NFC Championship game at RFK Stadium. Even though the Redskins were the home team and the NFC East Champion that year, the Cowboys were expected to win. They were the popular bandwagon team with two Super Bowl appearances, a Super Bowl Championship, and a winning legacy behind them. That game was my first definite memory of a Redskins’ triumph and still one of my all-time favorite games.
Super Bowl VII was my first bad memory of a Redskins’ defeat. The unbeaten Dolphins completed their perfect season—the only one in NFL history—by dominating my favorite team. The final score was 14-7. It could have been a 17-0 shutout had it not been for a flubbed field goal attempt and the most ridiculous excuse for a forward pass in the history of the game.
I can look back and laugh now, but I hated the Dolphins after that game. For ten years, they ranked just behind the despised Cowboys. It wasn’t until Super Bowl XVII that I finally got over it.
I hope the Seahawks do better this Sunday. I hope they win. It feels strange for me to say that. The Seahawks are the team that knocked the Redskins out of the playoffs three times in a row, in 2005, 2007, and 2012. They’re the team that Washington was playing when Robert Griffin III tore up his knee. The catastrophe that was the 2013 Redskins season began on that awful January night just a little over a year ago. I should hate the Seahawks the way I once hated the Dolphins.
But I don’t. The Seahawks are Anna’s team., and for her sake, I want them to win.
So who are you rooting for this Sunday? Do you care who wins? Will you be watching the game or doing something else? Tell me in the comments.