Super Bowl XLVIII is only a few days away, so it's time to figure out to root for if you haven't already.
Thankfully for Eagles fans, there isn't a division rival playing in the championship game. That always makes for an easy rooting decision, but it's not a fun time when that team wins (see: New York Giants). Neither the Denver Broncos or Seattle Seahawks are even close to being local, so that's not a factor either. The Broncos have won a few Super Bowls before, while the Seahawks are searching for their first Lombardi franchise history. So how should you decide who too root for? Here are some reasons for each team.
The Broncos have the best quarterback in the NFL. The Denver offense is quite ridiculous. If you're a fan of scoring and points, this is an easy choice for you. The Broncos scored an average of 37.9 points per game. The next closest team? The Eagles at 27.6 points per game. That's a whole 10.3 points per game less than the Broncos scored. Simply put, that's ridiculous. I imagine Eagles coach Chip Kelly can't help but desire those kind of numbers.
As far as Eagles connection go, the most obvious one is cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. A number of Eagles fans won't forget the lack of effort he gave in Philadelphia. Those same people wouldn't want to see DRC rewarded a ring. Or maybe they would, if it meant they would never have to see DRC play again. The 26 year old CB said he might retire if the Broncos win. Uh, OK.
Another former Eagles player on the Broncos is Winston Justice. Justice will forever be remembered for the struggles in his first career start against the Giants where he allowed four sacks. Justice eventually overcame his struggles and turned out to be a solid player. Then Eagles offensive line coach Howard Mudd came along and Justice found himself on the outside looking in. Justice was traded to the Colts, where he started for them in 2012. The Broncos signed Justice for depth purposes when starting LT Ryan Clady went down with a season-ending injury earlier in the season.
Other former Eagles on the Broncos include Steve Vallos, the team's backup center in 2012, and Stewart Bradley, the once promising Eagles middle linebacker. Unsurprisingly, Bradley is on Denver's injured reverse list. Former Eagles WR Jordan Norword is also a Bronco but he's only signed to a futures/reserve contract which means he won't actually receive a Super Bowl ring if the Broncos win.
One former Eagles player who will be rooting for the Broncos on Sunday is Eagles legend Brian Dawkins. Dawkins played in Denver for a few seasons after the Eagles failed to re-sign Dawkins in free agency. A current Eagles player who will not be rooting for the Broncos is Eagles RB LeSean McCoy. Why? It's fairly simple.... "Knowshon Sucks."
If an elite defense is more your speed, the Seahawks are your cup of tea. The Seattle defense allowed a mere 14.4 points per game in the regular season. They did this by making big plays on defense. The Seahawks defense accounted for 28 interceptions and 44 sacks. The Legion of Boom, the self-named Seahawks secondary, has the ability to completely shut down opposing passing attacks. Speaking of Seahawks secondary members, it's impossible to not mention cornerback Richard Sherman. Sherman has a reputation for being a trash talker but that elevated to a new level when he called out Michael Crabtree in a post-game interview with Erin Andrews after the NFC Championship Game. No matter how you feel about Sherman and his act, it can't be denied he's fun to watch.
The Seahawks offense can be entertaining too. Young signal caller Russell Wilson, who the Eagles reportedly coveted but ended up with Nick Foles instead, has the ability to extend plays with his legs and make big time throws. When running back Marshawn Lynch isn't eating Skittles or ignore the media, he's running harder than any other running back runs. Beast Mode doesn't get tackled to the ground with ease.
The Seahawks are led by the second-oldest head coach in the NFL: Pete Carroll, 62. Carroll, like Chip Kelly, made a successful jump from the college ranks to the professional league. It's worth noting Carroll did have previous NFL coaching experience, however.
There's only one player on the Seahawks that used to be an Eagle: defensive end Chris Clemons. Clemons didn't live up to the impact the Eagles had hoped when they signed him to a five-year contract in 2008. In 32 games with the Eagles, Clemons recorded a mere 7 sacks along with one awesome choke slam on Tarvaris Jackson. The Eagles traded Clemons and a 4th round pick for Darryl Tapp. It's safe to say the Eagles lost that trade considering Clemons has racked up a grand total of 38 sacks in four seasons with Seattle. At the same time, it's hard to have seen the Eagles getting that same kind of production out of Clemons in Philadelphia. He seems to be a better fit in Seattle's defensive scheme.
The other Eagles "connection" on the Seahawks is some safety named Earl Thomas. You may have heard an Eagles fan or two talk about him before. I'm just going to leave it at that.
I expect Eagles fans to be leaning more one way than the other, but I also expect the poll numbers to be fairly even. Let's see if I'm right. Vote below!
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