New Orleans Saints
Although the Seahawks exceeded expectations by making the playoffs and pulling off one of the greatest upsets in playoff history, it’s hard to find and MVP candidate. This biggest problem is that nobody really stands out. Sure, a few guys had a big game or two this season, but consistency was one thing the Hawks never really had. I got it narrowed down to 3 players on offense: Mike Williams, Marshawn Lynch, and Matt Hasselbeck.
Unfortunately for Mike Williams, Michael Vick decided to have the best year of his career despite having the worst 3 years of his life just prior. On one hand, good for Vick. He’s probably traveled farther between failure and success than any athlete in recent history. On the other hand, so has Mike Williams. Williams did the unheard of by shaking off his “Bust” status this season. Although Williams only had 751 yards and 2 td, he seemed to gain momentum as the season endured. Williams played through injury and said all the right things. He has earned the status as a legitimate wide receiver in the NFL, and has left fans with high expectations believing that last season was just the beginning. This award could very well be Williams’ next season and many more to come, but this season is just way too early.
Marshawn Lynch had one of the greatest runs in NFL history against New Orleans. He eluded well over half of the entire defense to score on a run designed to kill time. The problem with Lynch is that his play on the field looks nothing like his statistics. Seattle finished 2nd to last in rushing last season. The offensive line struggled early losing their coach in the preseason and Max Unger early in the regular season. Despite the poor blocking, Marshawn Lynch made some incredible moves this season and demonstrated a power and tenacity when breaking tackles that had long been forgotten in Seattle. The only bad thing was that all this happened behind the line of scrimmage. Lynch routinely turned 4 yard losses into no gains. Tom Cable and the return of Max Unger should help the line considerably next season. Marshawn Lynch is the player that I am most excited to see next year. His attitude and effort could not be better right now, but he will need a better line to get this award next season.
Matt Hasselbeck led the Seahawks to victory in one of the greatest games in franchise history. He also threw just as many interceptions as he did touchdowns during the regular season. Hasselbeck did not start well, but he did finish strong. In his first 4 games he threw for a total of 840 yds, 4td, and 6int. He was obviously struggling with a new offense and the lack of a running game only put more pressure on Matt. Oh, and did I mention that this was his 3rd head coach in as many years. Hasselbeck may not be the most accurate passer in the league, nor does he have the big arm, but he has moxie. He beat the life out of New Orleans in front of the same crowd that chanted, “Charlie, Charlie, Charlie….,” and he never made us feel bad about it. Hasselbeck then went into Chicago and did everything in his power to will his team to victory, but fell just short. Dropped balls were an issue in that game, yet Matt still managed to rack up 258 yards, 3 td, and 0 int. On any other playoff team, Hasselbeck might have followed up the game of his life by having another one just like it. I know he had a rough start and nearly lost his job to the likes of a guy referred to as, “clipboard Jesus,” but he finished strong when it counted most amassing 7 td and just 1 int in 2 playoff games. Matt Hasselbeck is this year’s MVP.
Honorable Mention: Leon Washington took back 3 kicks for touchdowns; his longest being 101 yards. Without Leon Washington, Seattle loses to the Chargers, and without that win, miss the playoffs and the greatest upset in franchise history. Washington provided some big plays early in the season. I hope Seattle uses Washington for more than just returns next season. His combination of speed and hands is lethal enough to have at least a few plays designed around it.
Here’s to Pete’s inaugural season as the head coach of the Seattle Seahawks. He exceeded expectations and left fans wanting more. Let’s just hope this momentum can carry effectively into next year.
It’s time to eat some crow. I think I’ll have mine grilled with a side of rice.
I’ll admit, I wanted Charlie Whitehurst to start last Sunday’s playoff game against the New Orleans Saints. Nothing about Matt Hasselbeck’s recent play led me to believe he was the right choice. I felt Pete Carroll was making a mistake in starting Hasselbeck. That’s why I’m writing on a blog while Carroll is making the big bucks.
I would have been thrilled if Hasselbeck matched his performance in Chicago in Week 6. He didn’t. He blew that game out of the water. Against the Saints, Matt Hasselbeck had the greatest game of his life.
He did all the things that he hadn’t been doing in previous weeks. He spread the ball around to all of his receivers instead of focusing on Mike Williams. He didn’t force throws into coverage and threw the ball away when he should have. He took advantage of what the Saints’ defense gave him rather than try to make the perfect play every time. (Granted, the Saints’ defense gave him a LOT.)
Hasselbeck played confidently with a cool head. It would have been easy to press the panic button when the Seahawks were down 10-0 and 17-7 early in the game. Instead, he calmly took control of the offense and led the team to a 24-20 halftime lead, then started the second half just as he had ended the first.
If this game was indeed Hasselbeck’s last as a Seahawk at Qwest Field, he couldn’t have gone out on a higher note. In what has been primarily a disappointing season, Hasselbeck showed that he has plenty of gas still in the tank.
Hasselbeck’s legacy would have been the same regardless of what happened Sunday. He is a lock for the Ring of Honor and will probably be the last Seahawk to wear number 8. He handled himself with grace and class through some very trying times the past few years.
Mr. Hasselbeck, no matter what happens this Sunday against the Chicago Bears, all Seahawks fans respect what you’ve accomplished over the years. Congratulations, and thank you.
You’ve earned it.
People are still talking about it.
It has been called by many fans and media sources alike, “The greatest run I have ever seen.”
It was bound to happen at some point for Marshwn Lynch. All year long he has been running like a Beast, however, has had little to show for it but pride. You see him fight harder than any other runningback in Seahawks history for every yard. He plays with no fear of injury, and you never get the feeling that he is just padding the stats. He gives 100% on every play in every game.
As great as Shaun Alexander was for the Seahawks, he never ran like that. Ever.
Before the biggest upset in the history of the NFL playoffs happened, Marshawn was introduced alongside his college teammate, Justin Forsett. After emerging from the tunnel, each running back stood with his back to the other, one with his arms crossed and the other pointing up to the sky. Neither trying to take from the other. A rare case of character and friendship in a business driven league. These two friends realize that their styles compliment one another in turn making them each a better player. The Beast and the Priest as they have been called.
You have to love this tandem despite the poor rushing production all season long. Marshwn is averaging 3.5 ypc. This doesn’t seem like much, however, it should be noted that Lynch has been routinely hit in the backfield and been forced to create a little something out of nothing. Say what you want about his 3.5ypc, but in my opinion, it’s the toughest 3.5 yard average in the NFL.
The match-up in Chicago is almost the opposite of the Saints the previous week. New Orleans was ranked 4th against the pass and 16th against the rush. Chicago, on the other hand, is ranked 2nd against the run and 20th against the pass. One would not expect Lynch to have the same game against Chicago, however, momentum can do crazy things to opposing defenses, and Lynch has more momentum than any other player in the NFL right now.
Nobody in the media gave them a chance. The phrase, “they don’t deserve to be here,” was the dagger of choice for media and fans alike. I expect this from the media, but the fans? Really? Can we finally stop talking about the draft pick? Hawkman?
They won. And guess what? Most of the major media sources give credit to… the Saints for not showing up.
This is absolutely ridiculous. The Hawks put up 41 points on the 4th ranked defense in the NFL. Matt Hasselbeck destroyed the defense with his arm and Marshawn Lynch destroyed them with his legs.
I could not be happier for Hasselbeck right now. He is one of the greatest most tenured Seahawks of all time whose star looked to be fading. Many fans had given up on him thinking that he had lost his magic (I already apologized). However, yesterday he proved to have some left in the tank. Just enough for one more run with the team he has earned the right to lead. Well done old friend. That was a performance for the ages. One that has hopefully solidified Matt’s Ring of Honor status and his place in Seahawks lore.
Now “The run.” What are we going to call this? It deserves a name. Was this the greatest play in Seahawks history? It has to be the greatest running play. I have never seen a runner break 8 tackles and defy a defense so badly. I like to picture Jim Brown and Barry Sanders watching that play together saying to each other, “Now that’s how we used to take care of business.” Thank you Marshawn for the greatest run in Seahawks history and for putting the nail in the coffin of the Super Bowl Champions.
Congratulations to everyone who still believed in this team. It’s hard being a Seahawk fan, and the media doesn’t make it any easier. Neither do the fair weather fans. You know who you are. Feel good this week as your team defied the universe to win this game. Your team is an up and coming franchise with a white hot coach and more momentum than any team in the NFL right now. GO HAWKS!
The thing about night games is that they seem to be the only thing that exists. It’s like going camping and feeling disconnected from everything except the place you are at. Sunday night “that place” was Qwest Field.
Before the game, Hasselbeck looked good in warmups, and he could have started, yet Carroll went with Whitehurst as he said he would all week. I was surprised to say the least, however, I would be even more surprised if Whitehurst did not start against the Saints
Whitehurst’s biggest play was to Ruvell Martin, a 61 yard pass that blew the roof off the stadium early and created an unstoppable momentum that was bound to finish with 6 points. Whitehurst went 5-5 on Seattle’s first drive. The Seahawks caught a break on a 3rd an 10 when a defensive holding call on R. Bartell negated a sack. Somebody should buy that guy a steak the next time he comes to Seattle.
After a brilliant first drive, Whitehurst played a relatively safe game finishing with under 200 yards and a single touchdown. I wouldn’t go as far as to say he won the game for the Hawks, but he did not lose it for them either.
Whitehurst’s value came on his 8 carries for 30 yards demonstrating that he doesn’t have to throw the ball every play. He has the ability to get out of the pocket and either throw it away or pick up a couple of yards. He didn’t get sacked the entire game.
The Seahawks defense looked as good if not better than it has all season limiting the Rams to just 47 yards rushing and 155 yardspassing. In fact, Charlie Whitehurst had more rushing and passing yards by himself than the entire Rams team could muster. They also provided consistent pressure on Bradford all day especially Raheem Brock who finished with 2.5 sacks and 4 hits on qb.
“The Heater,” David Hawthorne was everywhere collecting 7 tackles on the day, but the real play of the game came from an unlikely source, Will Herring whose interception late in the 4th qtr solidified Seattle’s spot atop the NFC West.
In the end, the Hawks took advantage of the opportunity they were given. Granted it took them the entire 17 weeks to finish, but they did, and now they are hosting a playoff game against Super Bowl Champions, the New Orleans Saints.
Stop complaining whiners! This is a winnable game! Stranger things have happened, and the Hawks are looking healthy and confident, and they showed they can play an entire game. New Orleans has a slew of injuries and are not the same team they were last year.
So quit complaining fans, and get on board. The Hawks are in the playoffs, this team exceeded expectations, and anything can happen. Nobody picked The Hawks to beat the Rams, and they did. Remember that as you see the predictions for this weeks match-up.
Hasselbeck quieted his critics for the second week in a row throwing for more than 360 yards with a qb rating of 104.9. Mike Williams looked great until suffering an injury. Williams still finished with 6 catches totaling over a hundred yards. Obomanu continued to impress collecting 87 yards and 1 td. Obomanu made a great leaping catch that demonstrates just how truly far this seventh round draft choice has come.
Unfortunately absent was the running game… again. Marshawn Lynch looked to come on strong early, but fell victim to 2 dropped passes, one of which may have been big, and worst of all 2 fumbles. This was hard to take. Especially when one capped a 9 play drive.
The Defense was hard to take. The Saints went 11-15 on 3rd down. Most of which seemed like they were right up the middle. It should be noted that Trufant went down early with a head injury. His replacement W. Thurmond III got burned more times than there are guys he’s been named after. Although, sometimes Thurmond has been known to make really amazing plays, you are first defined by the number of mistakes you make. Nobody notices the great plays until you eliminate the bad ones.
Chris Ivory seemed to have his way with the Seahawks early in the game. He looked like a glacier at times, slowly churning the defense only to pop out and gain another 5-15 yards. I believe it was stated that Ivory was leading all rookie running backs and was an undrafted free agent. Had he dropped the ball twice in the game, I might have compared his style to Lynch’s.
Don’t get too discouraged. Remember how young this team really is and how much roster change has taken place. The offense looked absolutely amazing at times. Cranking out one big play after another. Although penalties, turnovers, and an inability to finish drives in the endzone still haunt the Seahawks offense, they look to be getting better. Players look more confident in their understanding of the offense and ability to make plays.
The Seahawks didn’t look terrible today. Well, the defense looked pretty bad. But remember, the Saints have one of the most high octane offenses in the NFL. Brees is a HOF, record setting machine. It is what it is. However, had the Seahawks been able to finish off drives in the endzone and perhaps avoid a few penalties, this would have been a different game.
Pete Carroll still has a ways to go, but the effect of his presence is beginning to take hold of this team and fans across the North West. He is starting to shake the dust off a team who has been in a downward spiral since the announcement of Mike Holmgren’s replacement by he who shall not be named. It seems to me that Pete has a recipe people are starting to believe in. His ingredients are starting to simmer and show signs of improvement. I don’t think the Saints game was a s terrible as the score might seem. There were some really great moments in this game. Which ones jump out at you?
Tags: 3rd down conversion, Ben Obomanu, Drew Brees, football, John Carlson, Justin Forsett, Marshawn Lynch, Matt Hasselbeck, Mike Williams, New Orleans Saints, nfl, offense, passing, Seahawks, Seattle Seahawks
Well here we are just a few hours before kickoff in New Orleans. To tell you the truth, I am really not sure what to expect.
Are the Seahawks perhaps the largest underdogs against the Saints this week? Yes.
Have the Seahawks played well enough, for breif periods of time, to beat the Saints today? … well ya. Maybe?
Will Russell Okung be able to help Marshawn Lynch rush for his first 100 yard game? Yes!
Can the Seahawks pull this one off? I hope so. That’s the best I got.
Following a huge victory in the season opener against the San Francisco 49ers, the Seahawks failed to execute and lost miserably last Sunday in Denver.
The 49ers, despite an 0-2 record, looked much improved against the New Orleans Saints. And despite a defeated season through two weeks, the media is prepared to admire Mike Singletary and friends once again.
Prior to the season opener, the San Francisco 49ers were considered by many to be the class of the NFC West. That isn’t saying much, but on paper, they seemed to be primed for a breakout season in a weak division.
Everyone conveniently forgot Alex Smith is still San Francisco’s starting quarterback.
Mike Singletary, a clown not worthy of his apparent prominence, is still the head coach – and still “great” despite a 13-14 coaching record without any postseason appearances.
Apparently, after barely losing to the New Orleans Saints, the 49ers are finally living up to their potential.
But they’re still winless in 2010. And close doesn’t count in the National Football League; a loss is a loss.
According to Mike Sando of ESPN.com, however, the San Francisco 49ers are still better than the Seattle Seahawks. Yes, they are ranked higher than the team who handily beat them in the first week of the regular season.
In his latest power rankings, Mike Sando ranks the San Francisco 49ers as the 20th best team in the National Football League, ahead of the Cardinals (23), Seahawks (24), and Rams (31).
And yes, the Cardinals – who barely beat the Rams in week one and were easily defeated by the Atlanta Falcons last week – are also ahead of the Seahawks.
The season is young, but I don’t know how anyone can justify ranking the 49ers or Cardinals ahead of the Seahawks. Until the Seahawks win the division, the media will continue to give unearned credit to the 49ers.
Did anyone watch the first week of the regular season?
Tags: Alex Smith, Arizona Cardinals, ESPN, football, Mike Singletary, National Football League, New Orleans Saints, NFC West, nfl, power rankings, San Francisco 49ers, Seahawks, Seattle Seahawks, St. Louis Rams