Identity will continue to be a topic for the Seahawks as they white-washed the entire organization all the way up to the President. The first step of building your identity is always to decide what you want to be. Look at your strengths, weaknesses and opportunities to determine what you want to accentuate, and what you want to hide. Once you have set out to define your image, it is often useful to learn what others perceive when they look at you. That’s not to say you should define yourself by others perceptions. It’s simply useful to know if the attributes you are trying to promote are showing signs of emerging.
Take this article from the San Diego News-Tribune about Philip Rivers performance against the Seahawks. Understand that it was written from a San Diego perspective, and explore the duality of its meaning when read from a Seahawks perspective. It’s point is to call out how superhuman Rivers was on Sunday, and he was (from every perspective). The real intrigue is in the writer’s attempt to characterize how this wasn’t even his best game. In doing so, he gives insight that no Seattle reporter is providing the day after:
Only 17 times in 67 starts has he had a lower rating than his 80.3 on Sunday. Only 14 other times has he thrown two interceptions. Only 11 other times had he completed less than 54.7 percent of his passes, as he did Sunday.
What the Seahawks defense accomplished against Rivers is exceedingly rare. Many will focus on the massive yards total and miss the intricacies of how they did things to keep Rivers from winning the game. Again, the writer gives us evidence of this while trying to tell San Diego fans of Rivers courage:
Statistics don’t account for a man running all over the backfield waiting and waiting for a play only he could see to materialize. Statistics don’t account for a guy who can dissect a defense that keeps moving and keeps blitzing and keeps hitting him….With the Chargers down 17-0 less than a minute into the third quarter, Rivers let go of a 28-yard pass to Gates knowing he was about to get drilled in the chest by a charging linebacker. “To know a 300-pound guy is coming at you full and making that throw and being able to sit in there, it takes some guts,” Gates said. “When you talk about Philip, talk about the guts he has, the toughness he has.”
Note the indications of tough coverage, of an unrelenting and attacking defense that is successfully getting home and invading the minds of the offense. That’s an identity a fan can cheer for. That’s an identity worth going after. That’s an identity that can win a division.