I was getting my hair cut the other day, and the lady cutting my hair (stylist? barber?) asked me who I was rooting for in the Super Bowl. I had no answer.
See, here's what happens with the Playoffs: I am very much involved and into them, and then the AFC and NFC Championship games are played and I immediately shut down afterwards. I can't handle being excited for the Super Bowl for two weeks, especially when there's no news and nothing changes at all. Then, about a week in, something reminds me that the Super Bowl hasn't been played yet and I get excited.
While the San Diego Chargers are not in any way involved in the Super Bowl, this year's game should be exciting for any football fan. The league's best offense against the league's best defense! The prototypical veteran QB against the second-year QB that fell in the draft because he was anything but prototypical.
So far, the "star" of the game is the best CB in the league, Richard Sherman. The same Richard Sherman that was a WR at Stanford five years ago, who is now known to some as a "thug" because of the best post-game interview in recent memory.
This year's Super Bowl has everything a true fan could possibly want. The only thing it's lacking is some off-the-field drama, something that draws the attention of a larger audience but has absolutely nothing to do with football. Personally, I'm a-okay with the Super Bowl coming and going without that drama.
Now, back to the point at hand. I had a decision to make. Who should I root for? I explained to the lady that there are two schools of thought on who I should be rooting for:
For the team that knocked the Chargers out (Denver Broncos)
The theory being that, if the team that knocked your team out of the playoffs wins the Super Bowl, your team could arguably have been the 2nd best team in the playoffs.
Example: In the 2008 season, the Chargers lost in the playoffs to the Pittsburgh Steelers, who would go on to defeat the Arizona Cardinals to win the Super Bowl.
Secondary reason: History. If you appreciate watching history while it happens, you have to appreciate the idea of watching Peyton Manning win another Super Bowl. He very well might be the greatest NFL player ever, and the only thing holding him back is that he has just one Super Bowl victory.
Against the team that knocked out Chargers out (Seattle Seahawks)
Are you a revenge-seeker? Did the Chargers' playoff loss in Denver leave you with a desire to see Peyton Manning cry tears of misery in front of a hundred million viewers? Well, then, your choice is easy. Go Seahawks.
Example: In the 2007 season, the Chargers lost in the AFC Championship game to the undefeated New England Patriots. The Patriots went on to lose in the Super Bowl to the New York Giants.
Secondary reason: Another NFL titan. There are those teams that you know will be competing late in the playoffs every year and should be greatly respected. At the moment, the Seahawks are not one of them. They're still viewed as a team that wins because of their home crowd. Beating Peyton Manning at a neutral site to win a Lombardi Trophy would put the rest of the league on high-alert that the Seahawks could win multiple championships this decade.
Personally, I haven't decided who I am rooting for yet. I think I'll let the first half decide for me. I don't really think there's one set team for Chargers fans to pick, unless you are more tied to your fandom and rooting against a division rival than you are to rooting for NFL history to be made.