(SportsNetwork.com) - The Seattle Seahawks didnt waiver in putting a quest for a return trip to the Super Bowl in the hands of their returning core. Winning the Super Bowl -- which Seattle did last year with a rout of the Denver Broncos -- is no easy task in the NFL and returning to the title game the next season is even more difficult. Needless to say, claiming victory in consecutive Super Bowls in near impossible -- though it has been done, with the 2003-04 New England Patriots the most recent club to do so 10 years ago with wins in Super Bowl XXXVIII and XXXIX. Fitting, then, that the Patriots stand in the way of the Seahawks claiming a second straight championship. Well, theres 31 other teams - thats why its hard, said quarterback Russell Wilson. You have some great teams out there, obviously, and great players. Weve found ways to just feed off one another and make plays when we needed to and be clutch, but also be consistent in our approach and the way we practice and the way we play games. Seattle returns to glory without having made a notable addition to its roster in the offseason while allowing more than a few useful cogs to take their talents elsewhere. The Seahawks now-iconic defense saw the departure of cornerback Brandon Browner -- to the Patriots nonetheless -- and 15-game defensive end starter Red Bryant as well as another end in Chris Clemons and reserve corner Walter Thurmond. And for a team not known for lighting it up through the air, the Seahawks allowed wide receiver Golden Tate to join the Detroit Lions via free agency and werent done tinkering in-season either, trading the talented by often distraction-causing Percy Harvin to the New York Jets. Seattle head coach Pete Carroll noted the use of long vision when addressing the roster, though that doesnt make it any easier. You have to go through that process and make the choices, he said. We lost some really good players from last years team and we knew that we were losing some heart and soul guys. But, they were the decisions that we had to make to make the choices to move ahead and also to continue to reward the guys. Carroll also admitted that trading Harvin wasnt the most popular move among the club and locker room, but it was one the Seahawks had to make. We just thought it was better for our team to move on where we had come from in a sense, said Carroll. We went back to more of the format that had gotten us here and it just seemed like the right idea and the right thought. ... There was a big impact of that, but we had to endure that and since weve come out of it weve found what we were looking for really in that decision. Seattle was 3-2 in five games with Harvin in the lineup and lost 28-26 to the St. Louis Rams in its first game following the trade. But Carroll showed he knew what he was doing despite the loss, with Wilson passing for 313 yards and wide receiver Doug Baldwin stepping up with seven receptions for 123 yards. And when all was said and done, the Seahawks found themselves right where they were last season: owners of the leagues top defense, rush attack and once again champions of the NFC West. Seattle may have caused a bit of a scare with its 3-3 start in what figured to be a tight division race, but finished strong with a victory in nine of its final 10. That included an impressive six-game win streak to end the regular season that featured two victories each over rival San Francisco and Arizona to lock up the NFC West crown. Retaking the identity they were in danger of losing, the Seahawks saw their defense step up over their final six regular-season games. Over that span, the club allowed just 6.5 points and 202 yards per game while collecting 24 sacks. Oh, and the Hawks outscored their opponent 134-39 over the win streak. I think early on we got to the point where we were trying to be too perfect, offered linebacker Bobby Wagner. We had to go back to realizing that its not about perfection, its about having fun and enjoying that time you have with your brothers. Once we got back to that, we really got going. Seattle is the 12th team to return to the Super Bowl after winning the title the previous season, but, in further proof it is no easy task, had to pull off an epic comeback in the NFC Championship Game against the Green Bay Packers. Trailing 16-0 midway through the third quarter and then down 19-7 with only 2:13 remaining, Seattle scored 15 points in 44 seconds to go ahead, though the Packers would force overtime with a 48-yard field goal with 14 seconds to go. That is when Wilson finally shook off his four-interception performance by coming up big when it mattered, hitting wideout Jermaine Kearse for a 35-yard touchdown with 11:41 remaining in OT and perhaps creating some momentum that will favor the Seahawks. If you remember a year ago, we had a fairly rousing game against the San Francisco 49ers to finish off last year and everything worked out just fine, said Carroll. We have a way of dealing with the ups and downs and a way that we approach it that Im hopeful weve put it into place already where it should be. That punched Seattles ticket to Arizona, where it has already won once this season. And though some have dismissed having an advantage due to regular playing time at University of Phoenix Stadium versus the rival Cardinals, others noted it cant hurt either. It does feel familiar to us and our players have commented about that as well -- that we feel comfortable coming here, said Carroll. Ultimately, location matters little as it comes down to planning and execution. Oh, and a little chip doesnt hurt either. I think guys are motivated, declared Kearse. The last time a team won back to back Super Bowls was with the Patriots. I think a lot of guys have a lot of motivation for that. Were just going to come out here and try to compete. Thats the ultimate goal right there is just compete and make plays when your opportunity shows. Joe Thornton Jersey . Rookie Marek Mazanec made 39 saves for his first NHL victory and the Predators beat the Chicago Blackhawks 7-2 Saturday night. Joe Pavelski Jersey . - The Seattle Sounders busy off-season continues with the team acquiring defender Chad Marshall from the Columbus Crew in exchange for a 2015 third-round pick and allocation money. http://www.officialsharksnhlshop.com/justin-braun-jersey/ . CSKA received the heavier punishment of playing its next European home game behind closed doors, after its supporters displayed racist and far-right symbols in the Czech Republic during a 2-1 loss to Viktoria Plzen on Dec. Logan Couture Jersey . Or at least on everyone elses expectations. Costa Rica followed up its surprise win over Uruguay with another World Cup stunner on Friday, beating four-time champion Italy 1-0 to secure a spot in the next round and eliminate England in the process. Evander Kane Jersey . Ellis had a season-high 37 points and two key assists late, Dirk Nowitzki led a fourth-quarter rally with 14 of his 35 points, and the Mavericks spoiled Howards best offensive night in Houston with a 123-120 victory over the Rockets on Wednesday night.EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. - Linval Joseph is listed at 6-foot-4 and 323 pounds, just the right size for an NFL nose tackle. The player Joseph looked up to while learning how to play in the middle of the line in high school and college was Pat Williams, and now his career has come full circle. Joseph has joined the Minnesota Vikings, who havent been able to match the moxie and production Williams provided at the position since the big man retired after the 2010 season. "Pat was a physical guy. He liked to slam guys. I watched him a lot," said Joseph, who finalized a five-year contract with the Vikings on Wednesday. Williams was picked for three Pro Bowls in his six seasons with the Vikings. They allowed the fewest yards rushing in the league for three straight years in that span, 2006 through 2008, and the oversized, popular, colorful Williams had much to do with that. "He wanted to show that hes an all-time great. He had something to prove from where he started to where he finished," Joseph said, adding: "He was just loved around here. And I want to be the same way." Joseph started 46 of 48 games for the New York Giants while averaging 55 tackles and three sacks over the last three seasons and won a Super Bowl with them, too. The 25-year-old was a second-round draft pick in 2010 out of East Carolina. He grew up in Florida after his family moved from the Virgin Islands. The Giants made him an offer, but he said "it was nowhere near" what the Vikings gave him.dddddddddddd. According to ESPN, Josephs deal has a maximum value of $31.5 million. Oakland and Atlanta also were interested. But Minnesota was his first choice. Joseph said he sees playing for new Vikings coach Mike Zimmer like his experience with the Giants and Tom Coughlin, another noted hard-nosed NFL head coach. "I can tell hes straightforward and hes defensive-minded and he wants to win," Joseph said of Zimmer. The Vikings also finalized one-year contracts on Wednesday with middle linebacker Jasper Brinkley and offensive lineman Joe Berger. Given the new deal they gave Everson Griffen this week and the extension they handed Brian Robison last year, the Vikings have secured three of the starting front four with contracts valuing more than $100 million combined at maximum worth. Those three will account for close to 15 per cent of the $133 million salary cap in 2014. They might not spending money on the line, either. According to a person with knowledge of the situation, speaking on condition of anonymity because the Vikings have not publicized any visits by free agents yet, former Chicago Bears defensive tackle Henry Melton will be at Winter Park on Thursday to meet with team officials. Melton made the Pro Bowl with six sacks in 2012, but he tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in the third game of last season. 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