Super Bowl XLVIII – Good vs. Evil

This year’s Super Bowl will feature the Seattle Seahawks vs. the Denver Broncos.  This matchup figures to provide for an entertaining game as it pits a fantastic defense against a superlative offense.  But there is more to this game than that. It is a battle of good versus evil.
A documentary entitled “The Making of a Champion: Seattle Seahawks” has been making the rounds. The video can be seen below:

At the 7:38 mark of the video Russell Wilson relates a dream he had in which he dreamt that his dad died and that Jesus came into his room and said to him that he should find out more about Jesus. At around the 8:00 mark Wilson concludes that dreams are real because 6 years later his dad died! Imagine that, one day you have a dream your dad died and sometime later in the future your dad dies. What are the chances? Can you say confirmation bias?

If anyone watches NFL football, this video will come as no surprise. Sunday after Sunday (and Mondays and some Thursdays and occasional Saturdays) we see players give praise to god for scoring this or that touchdown, or making this or that tackle. The video is obviously geared towards proselytizing for the Christian faith. The subtext of the video is that God has had a hand in making the Seahawks champions. So I guess the money should be on the Seahawks as god’s team in Super Bowl XLVIII. Supporting this notion is the fact that the Wilson-led Seahawks beat the Bible verses-tattooed Colin Kaepernick-led San Francisco 49ers in the NFC championship game.

Up next for Wilson and the Seahawks is the evil that is Peyton Manning and his Denver Broncos. But wait, not so fast. Manning is also a devout Christian (despite the devil sign he makes calling plays). So I guess the game will be a toss-up.

The wearing-on-the-sleeve Christianity of football players is not really surprising given that the majority of Americans (>85%) believe in an invisible sky god, with most Americans being Christians. Nonetheless, every time I see a football player praise god I roll my eys and think how bloody narcissistic and arrogant (I guess those are two qualities that successful athletes must possess). God is really championing this or that player making this or that play but is disregarding all of the pain and suffering in the world. Yup, god is good. The NFL players also do themselves a disservice in that they have obviously worked tremendously hard to get where they have gotten to. If they should thank anyone, they should thank themselves and their ancestors for winning the genetic lottery.

Some of the more high profile NFL players and coaches that don’t miss any chances to praise the lord: Kurt Warner, Ray Lewis, Tim Tebow, Reggie White, Tony Dungy, Mike Singletary (who used to wear a big-ass cross around his neck when he was a (failed) coach). Tim Tebow is interesting because of the Christian Right recent ploy of claiming victimhood. A large number of NFL players are outspoken Christians but remain in the league because, well, they are actually good at what they do. Tebow was not persecuted because he was a Christian; he simply was not good enough at the quarterback position to be even a backup in the league. Tebow was given tremendous opportunities beyond his level of talent, and I wonder if that was related to his notoriety as an outspoken Christian.

For the record, I am a diehard Miami Dolphins fan and we have our own Christian quarterback. Maybe one day the lord will take the Dolphins under his wing.


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