Seattle, WA (SportsNetwork.com) - The Seahawks and their faithful celebrated a Super Bowl championship with an hours-long parade which wound its way through the streets of Washington's biggest city on Wednesday.
"This is for you, the 12, and this is for the tremendous job these young men have done all season," said Seahawks legend Steve Largent, who served as emcee of the proceedings at a jam-packed CenturyLink Field. "This city has won a championship before ... but it has never seen anything like what just went on through the streets of Seattle."
Despite temperatures around the freezing mark and well below average for the time of year, televised reports estimated that almost half a million fans gathered along the route, which began from Seattle Center at 11 a.m. local time. The parade wended its way south down Fourth Avenue, past Westlake Park, and came to an end at the north entrance of the team's home venue.
"At the beginning of the year, we knew we could get here. Everybody put all the work in, right from training camp," noted Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson. "When I came here, I talked about winning multiple Super Bowls. And you can't win them all until you win the first. Our mindset from right now is to go about winning the next one."
As the signature Duck Boats containing players, team staff and family members passed, jubilant fans closed the open spaces in the streets trailing behind, singing, dancing and waving flags printed with the iconic "12" to signify the personification of crowd noise inside the stadium helping the club overcome their opponents.
Chants of "LOB! LOB" filled the air, celebrating the vaunted Seattle secondary, dubbed the "Legion of Boom," part of the top-rated unit in the NFL.
The NFC West champions capped their most successful season in franchise history with a dominating 43-8 victory against the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII.
"We thank the loudest fans on the planet," said Seahawks owner Paul Allen. "That support unified our community in an amazing way ... it reached all the way to New Jersey. This Super Bowl win is the culmination of an exciting journey, and we wouldn't be here if not for you, the fans."
It was only the second professional sports title the city has ever known. The Seattle SuperSonics, who bested the Washington Bullets in a five-game 1979 NBA Finals, held the mantle for more than three decades until Sunday night.