Sports with Art Thiel
5:00 am
Fri December 20, 2013

A Lot At Stake For Seahawks On Sunday

Even though the Seahawks have the best record in football (12-2) and have already made it to the playoffs, that doesn't mean they can coast through Sunday's game against the Cardinals.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says a win would mean a lot.

The Trifecta

If the Seahawks beat the Cardinals Sunday at CenturyLink Field, they will clinch the NFC West Division, secure home-field advantage and earn a first-round bye in the playoffs.

Cardinals 'Formidable Opponent'

The 9-5 Cardinals have a lot to fight for, too. Since losing to the Seahawks in October, they have won six of of their last seven games and still have playoff hopes.

"If the Seahawks take them lightly, it's going to be grim," Art said. "They have a lot of renewed energy with this team that will make them a serious opponent."

Seahawks Meeting High Expectations

Art said, ever since the Seahawks lost to the Falcons in the second round of the playoffs in January, there's been an expectation of this team to be a Super Bowl contender and win it. And they've lived up to those high expectations.

"Pete Carroll has done a marvelous job at keeping a competitive edge throughout the season," he said.

America's Team?

Art said it's "remarkable" how many people are looking upon the Seahawks as a darling, as a team to embrace.

"The national media has understood fully that this is a very good team full of wonderful characters and skilled players," he said. "It's really a team to like even if you're not from Seattle and there's been a big embrace around the nation."

12th Man Plays Important Role

Seahawks fans have been a factor for the team this season - setting noise level records at home and being very visible on the road, flying 12th Man flags.

"Certainly the number of Seahawks fans who show up for road games has been very, very impressive to a lot of people," Art said. "It's a great blend of fan base, talent and coaching that has brought the Seattle sports market to the precipice of - dare I say - greatness."

You can find Art Thiel's work at Sportspress Northwest and Crosscut.com