Will Seahawks' Woeful 0-2 Start Leave Them Out of the Chase for the Super Bowl Title?  

Posted by T ZAMAN in

If you set your goal to not only get to but win the Super Bowl this season, it is not a good idea to lose your first two games. During the 8-year period from 2000 through 2007 only 6 of the 70 National Football League teams that started the season at 0-2 went on the make the playoffs, much less win the Super Bowl. So here come Mike Holmgren's Seattle Seahawks, all full of spit and vinegar and wimpering out while losing their first two games, a 34-10 thumping from the Bills in Buffalo and a 33-30 overtime loss at home to the San Francisco 49ers, a National Football Conference West Division rival.In two games the Seahawks, which returned all 11 of their defensive starters (almost unheard of in pro football), gave up 33.5 points a game.One explanation for their lapse of playmaking came from defensive coordinator John Marshall, who maintained that there were not many blown assignments as much as the players simply not trusting their teammates and overcompensating in their own areas to make up for what they perceived as a shortcoming somewhere else. It kind of sounds like they were minding everyone else's business but their own.There are, of course, some other perhaps less plausible but more understandable explanations, such as spending too much time:1) Reading the press clippings about how great they were going to be this year.2) Placing a quick cell phone call to their agent to see what new endorsements might put them more in the spotlight.3) Figuring out the quickest route to the hot dog stand after the first half ends.4) Trying to figure out if that foxy looking blond in the 4th row on the starboard side is approachable.The defensive front did record 8 sacks but the defensive secondary was last seen somewhere near Tukwila, 12 miles south of Qwest Field in downtown Seattle.The six exceptions to the 0-2 rule of going nowhere fast were:1) The 2007 New York Giants who went 10-6 and won Super Bowl XLII (Super Bowl 42 to people in the real world, as opposed to NFL executives).2) The 2006 Kansas City Chiefs who went 9-7 and lost the AFC wild card game.3) The 2003 Philadelphia Eagles who went 12-4 and made it to the NFC championship game.4) The 2002 Atlanta Falcons who went 9-6-1 and made it to the NFC divisional game.5) The 2002 Pittsburgh Steelers who went 10-5-1 and made it to the AFC divisional game.6) The 2001 New England Patriots who went 11-5 and won Super Bowl XXXVI (Super Bowl 36 to people in the real world, as opposed to NFL executives).Alexander Pope, the master of the heroic couplet, penned "Hope springs eternal in the human breast, Man never is, but always to be blessed" and so it is with the Seahawks.After being mired in a pitiful state like fraternity boys caught with their pants down outside in the dead of winter, the Seahawks made a 180-degree turn at home last week and routed the St. Louis Rams (another division opponent) 37-13. With all of Seattle's starting wide receivers banged up and left with major inexperience at the wide receiver position, the Hawks' handed off to Julius Jones 22 times for 140 yards (6.4 yards per carry), including a 29-yard touchdown scamper. They handed off to T. J. Duckett 19 times for 79 yards and 2 short TD runs, and that was that.Did I mention that rookie tight end John Carlson (all 6-foot-5, 251-pounds of him) continues to look good and actually catches the ball when you throw it to him? Carlson comes to Seattle from Notre Dame. He is not the first great tight end from Notre Dame.That honor belongs to the immortal Leon Hart, the 1949 Heisman Trophy winner and the only lineman to win 3 national titles in both college (1946, 1948 and 1949 national championships at Notre Dame) and pro football (1952, 1953 and 1957 NFL championships with the Detroit Lions).Leon Hart is also the last and only 1 of 2 linemen ever to win the Heisman Trophy. He was an All American tight end on offense and defensive end on defense. That was when men were men rather than self-centered, spoiled, multi-millionaire, petulant stars who show up but don't always play for fear of being hurt.Seattle has a bye this week but travels to New York on Sunday (10-5-08) to face the defending Super Bowl Champion Giants. We shall see if the Seahawks can duplicate their last game success at home while on the road in East Rutherford (NJ), where Giants Stadium is located. There is a rumor going around that the Giants are really happy to see the Seahawks coming, something about patting their 3-0 record.

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