Super Bowl Sunday is the highest of Holy Days for sports fans and NFL fans alike. But what about those outliers? What if your team isn't playing, or you only care about college sports — or worse you've been invited to a Super Bowl Party but know nothing about who to root for or why?
Never fear, if you can’t get rah-rah excited about the Patriots vs. Seahawks showdown, you can definitely get excited about this year’s smorgasbord of political nuggets and subplots. If you can’t tap into that team spirit, here’s a list of 10 political reasons you might want to root for or against either team.
1) Democrats with a “D”: New England Patriots Owner Robert Kraft and Seattle Seahawks owner Paul Allen are big time Democratic donors, each giving over 70 percent of their personal contributions to Democratic candidates since 2009. While Allen has split his money more evenly since 2012 he’s mostly donated to Democrats and Republicans from Washington State.
2) Rush to Judgment: Rush Limbaugh conservative radio host and huge NFL fan roots against the Patriots because their focus on “team” over the individual and insistence on coming out on the field as a group promotes socialism.
3) 4th and God: Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson is a devout evangelical Christian. He was also a close friend and supporter of Mark Driscoll, former pastor of Mars Hill Megachurch in Seattle, who claimed liberals were turning Jesus into a “Richard Simmons, hippie, queer Christ.”
5) Cheaters Never Prosper: Conspiracy Theorist and Conservative radio host Alex Jones says the Seahawks are cheaters, pointing out that Richard Sherman was accused of using Performance Enhancing Drugs and Pete Carroll left USC under a cloud of cheating and controversy.
6) Feeling Deflated: The New England Patriots were accused of slightly deflating footballs — which allegedly makes them easier to catch — during their championship game two weeks ago. According to Public Policy Polling Democrats (46%) are more likely than Republicans (36%) to say that the Patriots are guilty in “Deflategate.”
7) Blue or Purple in the Red Zone: According to an analysis of NFL fan bases and the last several Super Bowl winners by the Washington Post, it appears that NFL teams that have fan bases with moderate purple state politics tend to win out over teams with either strongly Red State or Blue State fan base politics. The study shows that Seahawks fans are a little more purple and the Patriots fans are some of the most liberal in the NFL.
8) Hillary Loves the Hawks: Likely 2016 Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton seemed to tweet a pro-Seahawks Tweet during last year’s Superbowl (or at least a jab at Fox News and the Broncos).
9) Patriots Go to War With Russia: In 2005 New England Patriots Owner Robert Kraft met Vladimir Putin at a business conference near St. Petersburg, Russia. Kraft claims he was showing Putin what his most recent Super Bowl Ring looked like and Putin said “I can kill someone with this ring,” and put it in his pocket and walked off with the ring surrounded by KGB agents. Kraft was not happy and the situation got so tense that the George W. Bush White House had to get involved to prevent an escalation of words and accusations.
10) History in the Making: Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson became only the second African American quarterback in the 70+ year history of the NFL to win a Super Bowl last year (Only 5 African Americans QB’s have ever started in the Superbowl, Doug Williams, Steve McNair, Donovan McNabb and Colin Kaepernick, and Russell Wilson). This year he will be the first African American quarterback to play in two Super Bowls, and if he wins he’ll be one of only 7 quarterbacks to win more than one Super Bowl in the last 35 years.
...And it's Super Bowl XLIX (if you don't know your roman numerals, here's a debrief for added street cred).