For some reason I was thinking about this topic a lot today. With the Seahawks on a bye, it gave me a rare chance to just enjoy NFL football without the hives, palpitations and cold sweats I endure at home when the Seahawks are playing on the road.
Watching the usual national coverage, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to see there is a concerted effort to, well, basically not talk about the Seahawks. We're not the only team that lacks coverage of course but as Seahawks fans we are far too familiar with the obvious omission on a weekly basis when it comes to the national media.
So without my emotions tied in a giant OCD knot with a Seahawks game to watch on the road, I was able to focus on the general entertainment that is NFL football. When the Stealers game was coming up, I looked at those hideous throwbacks and noted the 80 year anniversary angle NBC was pumping out to the masses. It was then that I thought about what the NFL celebrates most. (In this context, when I mention "NFL" I mean the media, the fans, the players, coaches, and so-forth.)
The NFL most covets storied franchises.
It's not that the NFL hates the Seahawks, even if it feels that way sometimes. It's simply that we are the new kid on the block, respectively speaking. We have no dynasties. No Moments Of Glory outside Seahawks Nation that resonates with the rest of the world. Most of all, we have no rings.
This is why the 49ers get a pass right now, even though the Seahawks have dominated the NFC West for most of the first decade of the 21st Century. Nobody in the national media rode our jock when we were making fools of our divisional opponents. But lo and behold, the 49ers have ONE 13-3 season and a game removed from the Super Bowl and you can't get the collective national pundits to disengage their mouths from the 49ers, um...Well, you know where I'm going here.
Why is that?
Simple. The 49ers, to the "NFL", is a Storied Franchise.
Montana. Rice. Young. Walsh. The list is impressively long. Founded in 1946, a full 30 years before the name "Seahawks" was ever even mentioned in context to the NFL.
So the bottom line here obviously is, respect is not simply earned via victories in the NFL. No, it's also tenure.
37 years isn't bad, but it's nothing compared to the Old Souls of the league like the Stealers, Packers, Colts, etc, etc...
Championships change minds, but tenure is an unspoken honor that carries the most weight. Unfortunately there's no happy ending to this particular story, it's simply shining the light of truth on the situation. The Seattle Seahawks are not hated by the league. They simply don't measure up - yet - to the Good Old Boys Club that permeates the league in clusters.
Some of us will be alive to celebrate the day WE are one of the storied franchises in the NFL. Until then, suck it up, don't take the media bullshit personally, and to once again quote the Late former owner of one of our old rivals...
Just Win Baby.
Jed York does not own the 49ers; Russell Wilson does.