Tao Of The Hawk: The Synergy Principle

Todd Breda looks at the synergistic ramifications of thousands of united fans on the results of NFL games.

If you look up the word Synergy in the dictionary, the primary definition is as follows:

The interaction of two or more agents or forces so that their combined effect is greater than the sum of their individual effects.

So this process then, would explain the occurrence myself and many thousands of other Seahawks fans fortunate enough to attend home games through the years have witnessed in complete and profound symmetry.

It’s hard to articulate my tiny place within this absolute motion of symbiosis between player on the field, and fan in the stands, and how I am a part of something magical that transcends even basic principles of scientific understanding. How is it that the energy we feed into our favorite football team can actually manifest the very outcome we desire?

As a modest student of consciousness and what defines the true nature of reality – not to mention a rabid, diehard Seahawks fan that can eat, drink and scream “Seahawks!!!” with the best of them – these types of questions captivate my thirst for understanding.

There are games where the energy level is so consummate, there is no room for doubting the next play’s outcome. I can recall at least 10 times (and I’m sure there’s plenty more) personally where the energy the fan’s are projecting onto the field are in direct relation to the outcome of the next play.

For instance, we’re engaged in a huge defensive stand. It’s late in the 4th Quarter, the Seahawks lead 23-21. Stopping the opponent means everything. Not to mention if it’s a divisional opponent. Their quarterback has found his groove. They are less than 10 yards away from field goal range to win the game, since only 13 seconds remain.

The emotion of desperation has taken hits through the years as a less-than admirable quality for one to possess, but in the game of football, it is a virtue.

Forget the drunks behind you, perpetually spilling their over-priced beer and yelling obscenities without a cause, or the fan next to you who apparently has never heard the words “breath mint” in his life…In this moment, you are all willing soldiers ready to lay down your lives for the intoxication of victory.

All that matters – in fact all that has ever mattered in this moment - is this moment.

Every molecule of your being is centered in your throat. From the most native, primal portion within you calls… “STOP THEM NOW!! THEY MUST NOT ADVANCE!!!”

It’s not hard to argue if this was one, two or even a dozen fans in the stands displaying this level of emotion, little, if any effect would occur on the field because of it. However, when you have 60,000 fans demanding one resolution, the result is predictable. Players feed off of this like oxygen to someone who has been under water for over 2 minutes.

So the next time you hear what you think is a player giving just another cliché sound bite about how if it weren’t for the fans, they may not have been able to pull this win out, think about the divine process of synergy that insists that although it may on the surface feel as if you, as a fan, has no control over what happens to effect the outcome of a game…

…Think again.

Todd Breda is the CEO/CCO of, and a regular contributor to, Seahawks.NET. Feel free to contact him at todd@seahawks.net.

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