I haven't been to many NFL games, so when a trip to Seattle lined up with the ability to see the defending Super Bowl Champions, it piqued my interest. The weekend I was going to be in Seattle was the weekend the Seahawks were playing the Denver Broncos. If there was ever a game to make an effort to get tickets for, this was it.
Seattle has their baseball and football stadiums right next to one another.
The Seahawks brand themselves as having, "The 12th Man." Meaning there are 11 men on their team on the field at one time, and their fans are the 12th man on the field. It's a shoutout to their fans to they claim are much more involved, active, and louder than the average fan, thereby giving their team an edge over the opponents.
They really do play this to death, "The 12th man" slogan is everywhere. Except for a quick business trip I had never been to Seattle so I had nothing to base this on. Every team and city thinks they have, "The greatest fans in the world." But for the Seattle Seahawks, I have to say they just might take the prize. Their 12th man promotion is completely deserved. From the time you step off the airplane to the windows in stores along the street, flags, jerseys and signage is all over the place.
It's almost not an exaggeration to say EVERYONE is wearing a Seahawks jersey. I don't think I'm over estimating when I say 75-80% of the people I saw were wearing a jersey, shirt, face paint, colorful streamers, etc. And I think that's being conservative. 75% of more than 65,000 fans means you've got nearly 50,000 people dressed in team attire. It's tremendously overpowering if you've just been to casual games before and it's absolutely a credit to the fan base.
Seattle promotes Century Link field as having the best, most dedicated, and often loudest fans in sports. And I'd have to say, I think they're right. The loudest stadium experience I've ever had was the game I'm writing about, Seahawks vs. Broncos on September 21, 2014. It was just a continuing barrage of sounds, almost like the waves of an ocean hitting the beach, but not dissipating.
On the first play of the game, and the Broncos fumbled with Seattle recovering. That made the fans go even crazier and even louder. Seattle goes back and forth with a few teams, most notably the Kansas City Chiefs about who has the loudest fans/stadium. I've been to a Kansas City Chiefs came previously and this experience was louder. Since then however the Chiefs have set a new decibel record, so maybe I will have to visit Kansas City again to compare.
A great experience, a great stadium and a fun game that went into overtime. I"ll give it to the Seattle Seawhaws, they know how to take care of their fans and those fans might just be the most dedicated in the NFL.