MUNICH—There aren't a lot of people on this planet who have been involved in more big football games that Seahawks coach Pete Carroll and Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady, and yet even those two marveled at what took place at Allianz Arena Sunday afternoon.
Yes, the Seahawks obviously would have preferred to leave Munich with a victory, but even after a 21-16 loss to the Buccaneers, Carroll and his players still had a lot of good things to say about their experience during the game and in Munich this week.
"The fans were extraordinary, and everything about this whole trip has been great," Carroll said. "… What a spectacle. This is an unforgettable occurrence. To be in that stadium with them all connected like that, I don't know. I was respecting the fact they must have done this a lot because they're really good at it. It is an unforgettable experience and really feel lucky to have a chance to be here."
The connected part Carroll referred to really showed at various times throughout the day when the crowd would sing in unison as if they had spent the week there rehearsing the numbers. Whether it was singing along to the German national anthem before the game or "Country Road, Take Me Home" in the fourth quarter, or sticking around well after the game to keep the part going, there was a unique and electric vibe in the building.
"That was one of the great football experiences I've ever had, so that says a lot for 23 years in the League, and for a regular-season game," Brady said. "I think the fan turnout was incredible. It felt like a very electric atmosphere from the time we took the field. At the end of the game with them singing 'Sweet Caroline' and 'Country Road' that was pretty epic. I think everyone who was a part of that experience got to have a pretty amazing memory for their life.
"That was one of the great experiences I've ever had. I've played at Wembley twice. I played in Estadio Azteca in Mexico, which was another amazing experience, and this is as good as it gets."
Both teams were raving about the atmosphere in part because both teams were well represented, meaning it was loud no matter which team was on offense, or no matter which team made a good play. This was technically Tampa Bay's home game, but Seahawks fans from Germany and around the world took over Munich during the week, and made their presence felt on gameday as well.
"A lot of Seahawks fans here," noted Buccaneers coach Todd Bowles. "The crowd was electric, though. It was loud throughout the ballgame from beginning to end. I thought the German fans were outstanding, and it's a great place to play."
Most fans of both teams spent the entire game standing as well, and of course, singing their lung out.
"I've never seen a crowd like this," Carroll said. "I've never been in a stadium where a crowd was so much in unison and connected like they were. We've been in loud stadiums and really louder maybe even, but never where everybody—how do they do that? I don't know how they sing exactly the same like that, but it was really a spectacle."
Said quarterback Geno Smith: "It felt different as far as just the stadium and the overall atmosphere, but I thought the crowd was amazing. It was electric the entire time. They had a few soccer chants. I was looking forward to that. So it was a great experience. I definitely enjoyed it."
This was the Seahawks' second trip to Europe, having beaten the Raiders in London in 2018, and while it's a long trip for a West Coast team to make, the experiences the Seahawks have had make them more than happy to do it again if the league asks in the future.
"If the league gives us a chance to do it, we'll be wide open for it," Carroll said. "This was a great event for us. Having it come the week before the bye is really valuable. It's a totally different experience if you didn't have that. I wouldn't want to do that if it wasn't with the bye. But it's just competitively such a challenge. Yeah, we're wide open. I would love for us to be able to extend the relationship with the fans here in Germany. They were great to us. It's just as classy as it could possibly be. Everything about it was first class. Let me say this. We were with a lot of people that were part of the group moving us around, security people and all that. The kindness was obvious. People were so good to us and so thoughtful and ahead of everything and really made this a really wonderful trip."
Check out some of the best action shots from Seahawks vs. Buccaneers at Allianz Arena in Munich on November 13, 2022. Game action photos are presented by Washington's Lottery.