The essence of a prideful fanbase, the backdrop of Super Bowl XL saw Steelers fans taking over Ford Field. Seattle lost the championship amidst a sea of flickering yellow.
Those colorful cloths will be whipping again this Sunday at Heinz Field, welcoming back the city where tears have seemingly outnumbered raindrops since that fateful winter day in Detroit.
Unlike that enduring February 2006 night, the Steelers are heavily favored this Sunday—by as many as two touchdowns. On paper, nearly every checked box seems to be on the column labeled "Steelers."
Fans, with the fresh taste of bitter defeat overwhelming their sports palate, hope the projections are accurate.
Obviously, the hope is for a bitter Steelers squad to dominate the beatable 'Hawks, a team that was shut out on the same field in a game Seattle surely targeted for avenge against Pittsburgh in 2007.
Conversely, the team cannot afford an outcome similar to their home-opener in 1999, a 29-10 loss to Seattle. In that contest, the Seahawks rocketed to a 26-0 lead in the first half, including four straight field goals from Todd Peterson.
Since that debacle, the names and faces have changed dramatically, a natural occurrence over a 12-year span. In fact, few faces are familiar from the squads' last meeting only four years ago.
Steelers fans need no dissertation about the importance of this game, both as an opportunity to rebound from the Baltimore debacle and as a chance to seize momentum prior to a month-long, four-game marathon versus the AFC South.
Here are things to keep your eyes on this Sunday when Pete Carroll and the new-look Seahawks attempt to pull off the upset.