SEATTLE — Russell Wilson, Malcolm Smith and coach Pete Carroll walked out from behind the center field fence to an ovation that rivaled anything heard across the street at CenturyLink Field.
Even though it was opening night for the Seattle Mariners, they made sure the Super Bowl champion neighbors were recognized.
“It’s been great. Obviously everyone enjoys winning a world championship and just having fun with that,” Seattle tight end Zach Miller said. “I think everyone is excited about the opportunities coming ahead to bring it back together and a new season a new team.”
Smith, the MVP of the Super Bowl victory over Denver, carried the Vince Lombardi Trophy out as the Seahawks made their way to the infield where they were honored during the pregame ceremony. The tribute included a giant banner unveiled in center field and a lengthy video highlighting key moments from the Seahawks run to the first title in the four major professional sports for the city since 1979.
Wilson, Smith, Carroll and Miller were joined by wide receiver Jermaine Kearse, and linebackers Bobby Wagner, Mike Morgan and K.J. Wright.
Wilson has had a whirlwind offseason that included a day at Texas Rangers spring training, the club that owns his baseball rights, and throwing out the first pitch before a Rangers game last week. He also spoke to the Wisconsin basketball team at the Final Four last week and got the honors to throw out the ceremonial first pitch Tuesday to Mariners ace Felix Hernandez.
Wilson said he hasn’t gotten any backlash for taking part in activities with the Rangers, even though they are an AL West rival of the Mariners.
“I don’t pay attention to all of that. I’m blessed to obviously be drafted by the Rangers and that’s a great experience for me,” Wilson said. ” … It’s a great organization. Obviously I love to come to Mariners games as well and supporting my city where I play in the National Football League.”
Soon the attention will turn back to football. The Seahawks can begin their offseason program on April 21, but Wilson and Seattle’s offensive players are headed to Southern California soon for a players-run offseason workout similar to what they did last offseason.
“Obviously the goal is to do it again,” Wilson said. “We’re not satisfied with what we’ve done. We have a great football team again next year and we’re looking forward to it.”