February 7, 2014

On The Rebound: These birds could be around a while

By Mitch Howard
Sports Writer

LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. — There is something about the Seattle Seahawks Super Bowl championship that looks familiar. Since it is the team’s first title, it’s not déjà vu.

The team is led by a charismatic coach that was plucked from the college ranks. A young quarterback guided the team not as much by being spectacular than by not making mistakes.  The defense was not only good, they were nasty.

I think they could be the Dallas Cowboys.

The Dallas Cowboys went 14 seasons between Super Bowl wins before routing the Buffalo Bills 52-17 in Super Bowl XXVII. Their defense forced a record nine turnovers in that game. Seattle’s long-awaited Super Bowl win was also led by the defense, which shut down the league’s most prolific offense for a 43-8 decision over the Denver Broncos.

Both teams were built through the draft. The Seahawks used their picks wisely getting value for lower round choices. Dallas went on a shopping spree after gaining multiple picks in the Hershel Walker trade.

Will Seattle have a chance to repeat? There is every indication they will be around for a while. The Seahawks have the fourth youngest roster with no critical free agents or salary burdens. Quarterback Russell Wilson makes just over $600,000, which is low on the NFL pay scale.

No team has repeated as Super Bowl champion since the New England Patriots in 2003-04. Las Vegas has already chosen the Seahawks as the favorite to win next season. Although completely possible, it will be harder for the Seahawks to get there than to win it. Their toughest competition will likely come from their own division with teams like San Francisco, Arizona, and St. Louis also on the uptick.

After winning the Super Bowl in 1992, the Cowboys won again in 1993 and 1995. The dynasty began to crumble after the 1993 win though after owner Jerry Jones feuded with coach Jimmy Johnson. Johnson would resign and be replaced by Barry Switzer. Free agency and injury also took their toll on the Cowboys, who have not won a Super Bowl since.

It is hard to imagine the fate of the Seahawks running parallel to Dallas. There is little chance Pete Carroll will be run out of town like Jimmy Johnson. The youth of the players might help protect them against injury other than the already hobbled Percy Harvin. Free agency won’t be an immediate issue.

It’s a good time to be a Seahawk fan as shown by the 700,000 that showed up for the Super Bowl parade. Yet dynasties seem to be a thing of the past in a league where ratings and revenue are driven by parity.