The most dangerous person at a poker table is often the one who takes a "bad beat," which is poker terminology for playing a hand well, only to see the flop go against you, or your opponent to have made a hand that was statistically unexpected. It is a common term in poker, mostly used by people to describe their own play. It applies in other sports as well, for we all know that nobody ever loses because they played poorly, the cards just didn't go their way.
Seattle is in the same position now. Perhaps more than any team in Super Bowl history that doesn't have a kicker named Scott Norwood, they genuinely feel they lost a game that for moments, was in their grasp. They had the cards, they feel they played them well in most cases, and, from their perspective, the refs dealt them a death blow. Whether it was fate or conspiracy, they only know the franchise is languishing in despair.
Yesterday, when the Seahawks arrived home to a stadium where over 15,000 fans awaited them, Mike Holmgren drew a huge cheer (and probably an equally significant fine) when he said, "We knew it was going to be tough going against the Pittsburgh Steelers. I didn't know we were going to have to play the guys in the striped shirts as well."
Any team dealt such a hand needs to smart for a moment. The question is, will Seattle's fans be wise enough to eventually drop it, leave the conspiracy theories behind, and address the future, which, to anybody with some football sense, looks bright?
The fact is, those who spend too much time licking their own wounds can lose their taste for anything else. Namely, winning.
Seattle, an organization with class players and coaches, will recover quickly if they leave behind what was truly a bad beat.
Hopefully their fan base will allow them.