I Will Now Complain About the Seahawks.

Who's To Blame?

Who’s To Blame?

Am I wrong in saying that wasn’t a great Wild-Card weekend?  All the games were pretty ugly.  Some were closer than others, but with the exception of Green Bay, I’m not sure we saw anyone near the top of their game.  Even the Packers were aided by the presence of Joe Webb, who showed us there are shades of being awful we never even realized.  I found myself watching some of the action and saying, “That’s a playoff team?”  

That brings me to my disappointment with the Redskins and my frustration with RG3 not being healthy.  What we were seeing in the 1st quarter of that game yesterday was Seattle being exposed.  The Redskins were running them off the field.  We’ll never know what the outcome would have been if RG3 didn’t aggravate that injury before that 2nd TD, but we at least know that it wasn’t going to be a “convincing” win for the Seahawks.  Perhaps they regroup, maybe make a game of it, but maybe they get blown out.  

A lot of the discussion I heard after the game was surrounding how well the Seahawks played, how much trouble Atlanta was in next week.  This is what Washington did to me.  They perpetuated the Seattle underdog/feel good story myth.  This is the story that the media has decided they wanted.  Russell Wilson, 3rd round pick–unheralded.  DOUBTED.  The overcompensation for the east coast bias, the Pete Carroll cheerleader factor, the stories practically write themselves.  So, the only way to treat the win yesterday, if you want to keep that up is to ignore the fact that RG3 was hobbled, ignore the fact that Seattle essentially played the last 45 minutes on a power play and keep the momentum going.  The RG3 injury and how Seattle played have somehow become unrelated stories.  

I know why RG3 was in there.  At first, they were up 14-0, he was doing all right.  And as the game got closer, and as time ran down it became more difficult to make the switch.  They trapped themselves.  It would have taken a lot of courage to pull RG3 up 14-0, but if they were going to do it–that was the only time.  If Cousins could have managed 1 FG drive it might have changed the game, but Washington decided to live and die with RG3.  Can’t blame them, except for the fact that we’re left dealing with Seattle with another week.  

Just to provide some balance, here’s some things I noticed about the Seahawks yesterday.  

1.  They were totally dominated in the 1st quarter.

2. Russell Wilson was efficient, and made some big runs, but also regularly misses open receivers with poor throws or by not seeing them at all.  On his biggest run of the game, Sidney Rice was by himself for an easy TD.  The Seahawks would eventually score anyway, but those are the things that can cost you against better teams.  

3. Marshawn Lynch is a tough runner and is a key to Wilson’s success.  I feel like he’s being treated a sidekick to Wilson’s blinding brilliance.

4. Their defense played well only after Washington became one-dimensional (at best) on offense.  RG3 was robbed of speed and accuracy.  At 50? 40? percent he looked like Joe Webb.

5. Concerns about their play on the road shouldn’t be ignored.  In a huge game they came out and were immediately knocked off balance by Washington.  

So, instead of talking about how much trouble Atlanta is in for next week, maybe we should talk about whether Seattle has any shot of keeping this going?  Atlanta is a pretty good home team in their own right.  They aren’t the underdog, but considering they are only laying 2.5 points, it seems like a lot of people are viewing them that way.  I think some people undersold favorites this past week (notably Houston and Baltimore) and they might make the same mistake with the Falcons on Sunday.  

3-PT Playoff Pick Results:  

Both Kraft and I swept through the opening weekend.  Unprecedented as far as I know.  Feels damn good.  Especially not getting caught up in “Chuckstrong.”  Great story, and the Colts had a great year, but it’s hard to win playoff games when you have about 3 (?) good players.  Seven more to go for history….

  1. Kraft, 4-0
  2. Grossy, 4-0
  3. DC, 3-1
  4. Big Dub, 2-2
  5. JCK, 2-2
  6. Nichols, 2-2


The Oh By the Way, the National Title Game is Today Epilogue.  

I’ve hardly watched a bowl game.  I’ll tune in tonight, though.  I feel like the most casual of fans.  Oh, the National Title game?  Two incredibly high-profile programs?  I guess I can be troubled to see what happens.  At least for a quarter or so.  My real problem is that I don’t have a college football team that I root for with the intensity that I have for professional teams.  And, the two teams playing tonight make it difficult to latch on for a one-day bandwagon…

Alabama:  Reasons to dislike ‘Bama are numerous.  They have a nouveau bandwagon in areas outside of Alabama, they are both a historic program and a current juggernaut.  Nick Saban is pretty easy to dislike and always gets the best players.  There’s also ‘Bama’s old-school style.  They overpower you, run the ball, swarm you with speed on defense–it’s not the “modern” college game and not a real NFL look either on offense.  They’re kind of like the 2010 Jets with a much bigger talent advantage.  The best thing I can say about the Tide is that they denied Geno Torretta a national title in 1992.  

Notre Dame:  Notre Dame might as well play in New York considering my feelings for them.  They were right up there with my most hated teams when I actually watched college football.  They had the ability to turn me into a fan of the other team in an instant.  See my love of the 1988/89 West Virginia Mountaineers.  Major Harris was majorly out of his depth in that Fiesta Bowl.  Rooting against Notre Dame used to mean always having the underdog, but the Irish have lost a lot of luster in recent years and enter tonight’s game as a pronounced dog.  

What to do?  I think it’s one of those games where I won’t know what I’m going to do until the kickoff.  Kind of like that Steelers/Cardinals Super Bowl.  Never envisioned myself so Warner’d up before that game played out.  

The Line:  Alabama (-9.5).  That’s a big-time Tide line.  You’d need uncommon valor and courage to take ND.  Luckily, I have just that.  ‘Bama 24-16.  


17 thoughts on “I Will Now Complain About the Seahawks.

  1. I almost talked myself out of the 4 favorites. No denying that Cincy and Indy just aren’t good enough- definitely silences the argument for expanding the NFL playoffs, the 12 team format is perfect.
    Houston and Baltimore are extremely underwhelming. Lovely pick-6 by Schaub that led to 80,000 collectively coming to the realization of why they can’t be serious SB contenders. And Baltimore, riding the emotional high of Ray Lewis- Joe Flacco has mastered the 12-21 game. Or the 10-19 141 yds game. They shall forever be known as a ‘Flacco’. Good luck offensive game planning for Denver with Jim Caldwell. I’d like to be a fly on the wall this week for those planning sessions,

  2. I don’t know what it is, but I used to hate the Hasselbeck/Shaun Alexander/mike Holmgren Seahawks, but I kind of like these Seahawks. I get your breakdown. But part of it for me is that RW1 gets 1/2 the love of RG3 and he has had just as good of a season. The point about Marshwan Lynch is valid, but Alfred Morris has had a monster season as well (even rushing for more yards than Clinton Portis did for Wash).
    It took some real cajones for Carroll to go with RW1, considering all of the skeptics and also that they paid Matt Flynn some good coin in free agency. That could not have been a popular move at the time, especially with veterans. I also kind of like how this can be some redemption for Carroll- people like to tear down his success, and his 1st attempt at the NFL…maybe he knows what he’s doing and can coach a little bit?

  3. Picking 4 Favorites is a bit like taking all the #1 seeds in the tournament. You think it’ll never happen, but it does every once in a while–gotta go with the gut.

    I hear you about Seattle. I admit my bias. I think Carroll is a decent coach, but I’m not really interested in his redemption. I think he gets more shit because of his style of coaching, so he was OK in NE and NY, not great, not terrible, but is kind of remembered as a buffoon.

    One of the reasons why I don’t like Seattle is that they didn’t really get to become an underdog organically. It was manufactured. This whole Russell Wilson walked in the room and I was ready to follow him into battle 2 minutes later thing drove me a bit crazy. That’s all well and good, but you have to be able to play.

    Wilson has been better than I expected and Carroll deserves credit for going with him, but I think Wilson is getting plenty of pub. I don’t think he’s the QB that RG3 is and I think the team around him is better–especially the defense. He’s a good runner, but RG3 is the far better passer. The Skins pass defense is awful and it was just another blah passing game for Wilson. The best thing about him is that he doesn’t turn the ball over. That’s what is going to keep him in the starting lineup in the long run.

  4. Agreed on RG3 being the much better passer. I have to say, I’m very surprised at how good RG3 is. I thought he would be a smaller Vince Young, but he is accurate, makes great decisions..etc. also I think the perpetually wind burn Mike Shanahan has handled him extremely well, and his knack for creating solid run offenses is unparalleled (Olandis Gary anyone?)

  5. Is Seattle for real? Maybe. The other question to consider is if Atlanta is for real. I doubt they are. Wenever I watched Atlanta I always thought to myself, “This team is soft and dying to exposed by a physical team.” You may hate Seattle, but they are certainly a physical team offensively and defensively, which is the ultimate nightmare for that Atlanta team.

  6. I don’t know how Seattle can be more for real than Atlanta.

    We’ll see. I’m either going to be very right or very wrong on Sunday. I just think it’s frustrating because if RG3 is OK I think Washington wins that game. And now we think Seattle is going to cruise past Atlanta in Atlanta? They’re going to cross the country twice in two weeks and win?

    Wasn’t Houston a soft team? Wasn’t Cincy a pretty tough defense?

    • Yes, if RG3 stays healthy they beat Seattle. But then the Skins go on the road and beat Atlanta.

      To me, Seattle has the perfect makeup for playoff success: good run game, good defense and a QB who protects the ball. Atlanta doesn’t run it well and their defense is suspect. I’d be interested to know what Seattle is doing this week. Wouldn’t be surprised if they went down to Charlotte or some place down south after the game against the Skins.

      I don’t think Houston is soft and I actually think they stand a chance to win out in New England this week. The Pats have been very vulnerable at home in the playoffs lately.

  7. Is that really the makeup for playoff success though? I think it’s the makeup for beating bad teams maybe winning the 1st round, but good running teams with game manager QBs don’t really win Super Bowls.

    Looking forward to your picks this week. I think we’re going to be polar opposites.

  8. No one got elected to the Hall? Piss. Poor. I don’t like Bonds or any of those guys as much as the next, but they didn’t cheat. The commissioner and the union never said PEDs were illegal. The players played by the rules that were set before them and they played the best in the era that they were a part of.

    As for Seattle.

    To me playoff success is giving yourself a shot at winning the Super Bowl, not winning it. I would say the Eagles had playoff success under Reid for example. And I don’t see why we can’t start going back to QBs like Brad Johnson, Jeff Hoestetler, and Trent Dilfer winning Super Bowls.

    There are always swings in the NFL and I think we may be witnessing that this year where a game-managing QB ends up winning it. And who knows? Maybe Wilson goes from game-manager to elite status sort of like what Eli and Brady did. Both were considered game managers early in their careers, won a Super Bowl that way and then evolved.

    I wouldn’t be surprised to see a Wilson/Kaepernick NFC Championship.

    • Dilfer was now 12? years ago? Hoss was 22? If a stud QB wins the Bowl this year, that’ll be 10 straight with no stiffs. I think we’ve shifted, but even more toward good QBs. Look at Sanchize and the Jets, The Flacco Ravens, you can even throw Don in there. Most teams like that eventually come up short. I think that’ll be the case with Seattle this year, but we shall see.

  9. I don’t know why, but I got a kick out of this paragraph from one of the ESPN stories on the Browns new hire:

    Owner Jimmy Haslam and chief executive officer Joe Banner promoted this search as if they were going to get Nick Saban, Chip Kelly, Bill Cowher or Jon Gruden. Instead, late Thursday night, the Browns announced they hired “Chud.”

  10. That’s pretty funny. I feel like these writers have to quickly tire of reporting on these coaches searches. I’m already tired of the Eagles’ search. And, I’m preemptively tired of all the reaction to the guy they hire. Looks like they’re going to get about their 4th choice, at best, too.

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