It’s probably time to wind down the football talk. This will probably be my last football post until the NFL draft, which happens around April. It’s a little disrespectful to the other major sports, if I talked about combine results and post Superbowl euphoria over the other teams who are actually playing for something. Who knows, maybe this is the year the Mariners make some noise come September? At the very least, we can hope that maybe Jay-Z and Beyonce will visit Seattle for a Mariners game or two.
But let’s chat Seahawks for now…
In Superb Owl XXLIX (did I get that right?), 2015, the Seahawks are slightly favored to return. However, the odds of them actually doing that again are not very high. Football is a topsy turvy league. The best team doesn’t always win. There is a lot of luck involved. And more than anything the NFL is designed to stop teams from becoming a true powerhouse dynasty.
The salary cap, the one game elimination system, luck and injuries…the NFL and the game of football is designed to stop teams like the Seahawks from repeating as world champs.
Our Seahawks though, in case you haven’t noticed, are designed to break conventional wisdom.
I put together a list of reasons why you should have faith in our Seahawks for next year, and well beyond that. This should help you sleep at night during the summer, while we painfully watch our baseball team be out of contention before it really gets warm in Seattle, and we watch our former basketball team contend for a world championship…which they could very well get this year (C’mon Lebron!)
This list is no particular order:
1. Age (Ain’t nuthin but a number)
The Seahawks were the 4th youngest team in the NFL last season, and our cornerstone guys are only getting better. The only franchise player you could argue is nearing the end of his career might be Marshawn (running backs typically decline at 30 years, Beast is 28) but Lynch has shown no signs of slowing down. Even if he does, we have two beast running backs ready to take his place.
Wilson, Thomas, Chancellor, Sherman, Harvin, Wagner….all of these guys are in their early to mid-20’s, and the scary thing is, they might keep getting better.
Most Superbowl winning teams…the Ravens, the Steelers, the Packers…all had key players that were closer to the downside of their career. The Hawks are young and ready for some fun.
2. Money Situation.
The Seahawks are in good shape salary cap wise, mainly because we are paying our quarterback $600k when he should be making over $15 million a year. All of our key guys are signed, and signed to fairly small contracts. We might lose some veterans/leaders on the team…namely Red Bryant, Sidney Rice, Chris Clemons, etc…and while that could hurt us, the team is still in a good position to succeed. With the rise of the salary cap, the Seahawks may be able to afford to not only extend some key guys, but perhaps even sign some big name free agents who might want a chance to get a Superbowl ring.
3. Russell Wilson.
Okay okay, I get it. I’m in love with the guy. But how can you not be? A consumate pro, and leader on and off the field. The biggest thing though, that Russell Wilson brings to the team is stability at the quarterback position. You can’t expect to have sustained success in this league, unless you have stability with your quarterback. The Legion of Boom gets a lot of credit, rightfully so, but Wilson is the anchor of this ship. With him, so goes our Superbowl repeat aspirations.
Dude is 24 years old, looks like he’s 16, plays like he’s 30.
4 and 5. Pete Carroll and John Schneider.
As long as we have these two guys on our side, I’m really not worried about what the future holds. These guys have shown and proven that they can not only win, but they can put together a roster that blows the rest of the NFL out of the water.
Schneider is a guy who finds talent. He saw something in Wilson no one else did. He also found guys like Richard Sherman, KJ Wright, Bobby Wagner, and Earl Thomas. Schneider has a belief in finding guys with extreme physical talent, matched by a determination and drive that few teams are able to identify.
Pete Carroll is the ultimate teacher. He can make okay guys look awesome. He teaches his players how to tackle properly, how to strip the ball, how to read the offense/defense, and how to stay competitive and in the moment. Pete is a rare thing to have in an NFL football coach…and we should be thanking the old Gods that we have this guy as our coach Seahawk fans.
6. 12th Man/CenturyLink field.
The 12th man and the evil petting zoo known as the CLINK will not be going anywhere next season. In fact, I believe the 12th man will travel even more so next year then they did last year. There were a ton of Seahawk fans in Arizona for the Cardinals game, and again in New York for the Superbowl. I already know a bunch of fans planning to make trips to San Diego, San Francisco, and even, gasp, Kansas City.
CenturyLink is will be sold out in the first 2 minutes of going online, and I can only imagine how much louder we will be when we put that Superbowl championship banner up in the rafters.
Oh yeah, and the Superbowl will be played in Arizona next year. We might as well call Arizona CenturyLink South.
7. That Legendary Defense.
There is no doubt any longer that the Seahawks defense is one of the best defenses ever. Now the only question is, where do they belong on the mount Rushmore’s of defenses? I believe the Seahawks, with the new rules favoring offenses, and all….definitely belong in the top 5 discussion. How well they do next year will go a long way in determining where they stand.
The Seahawks won’t be losing any key pieces on defense next year. In fact, they might get even better. Thomas and Sherman will be in contract years, so you know they will want to have the best season possible…if that is possible at all. Kam Chancellor looks like he’s ripping the roof off his supposed ceiling. There’s a lot of guys that will be hungry to play on a defense as good as the Seahawks.
Also, defense doesn’t slump. Defenses stay good…because they depend less on scheme and rhythm, and more on raw power and emotion. Especially this defense.
8. Depth and more depth.
In case you haven’t heard, the Seahawks are LOADED. They are the only team that can lose a pro-bowl corner like Brandon Browner, and replace him with a backup that gets 5 turnovers in the 8 games he plays (Byron Maxwell). It doesn’t stop there either. The team has a bunch of guys that the average person hasn’t heard of, but they are just as capable as any other player on the team. Expect guys like Christine Michael, Michael Bowie, Luke Willson, Jordan Hill, Greg Scruggs, etc.. to all have bigger years next year.
9. Percy Harvin
Percy Harvin played in 3 games this year. Really only 2 to be technical…as he played half the Vikings game and half the Saints game. In every game he’s played, he’s been a difference maker. He’s about as electric a player I can remember being in the NFL. He is a danger to score every time he touches the ball.
Say what you will about his injury proneness…but you can’t deny that if Harvin is able to play a full 16 games, and there’s no chronic injury that says he won’t, he will make a difference in a “pedestrian” offense.
10. Everyone is “In”
The players have now completely bought into Carroll’s system. New guys and free agents who come to the Seahawks will now buy in, because they’ve seen what the Seahawks and Pete Carroll are all about. Don’t underestimate the impact that having a positive locker room has on a football teams performance. This league is filled with teams that have divided locker rooms…guys that show up, collect their paycheck, and call it a day.
The Seahawks have guys getting paid less than 1 million a year saying they “love” each other. That’s simply something you don’t see in many locker rooms, and is unique to the Seahawks. These guys have a brotherhood. Yes, the NFL is a business, but these guys believe in each other, and that kind of chemistry is something you can’t buy.
I look forward to the 2014 season. It will be a tough, difficult test, because again…this is football, and the football Gods are not kind to sustained success. But I believe, because just like in 2013, we are constantly striving for greatness, and won’t settle for anything less.
Categories: NFL and Seahawks