Is the Seattle Seahawks’ greatest contribution to the history of football the play they most wish they could forget?
Yes, it is, according to a new book from Sports Illustrated that ranks the best plays, players and teams in NFL history. “Football’s Greatest,” a coffee table-style book packed with pictures, used a poll of Sports Illustrated writers and editors to determine the best in several categories.
The Seahawks make several appearances: Steve Largent is the No. 9 receiver, CenturyLink Stadium is the No. 5 stadium and the Legion of Boom is the No. 7 unit.
But the highest ranking involving the Seahawks is in the “Best Plays” category. No. 4 is Malcolm Butler’s interception of a Russell Wilson pass in the final seconds of Super Bowl 49. The play turned what looked like a certain Seahawks win into a 28-24 victory for the Patriots. The game was voted eighth best in NFL history.
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The play probably should have been ranked higher, according to some. In the book’s introduction former Rams receiver Torry Holt called it the best play in NFL history. “That was the most dramatic, improbable ending you could script.”
The book includes a compendium showing the complete list of votes. Here, the Seahawks get a little extra attention. Walter Jones is the No. 11 offensive lineman and the 2013 Seahawks rank as the 23rd best team in league history. Marshawn Lynch’s famous playoff touchdown run against the New Orleans Saints in 2010 was voted the 21st best play in NFL history.
Defensive lineman John Randle, an all-pro for the Seahawks in 2001 but a Minnesota Viking for most of his Hall of Fame career, was named the 18th-best defensive lineman.
A local legend got some love. Washington State University grad Mel Hein, a charter member of the Hall of Fame, is the No. 9 offensive lineman. Playing for the New York Giants he never missed a game and was the NFL MVP in 1938.