Good morning. We’ll have our regular Monday Morning QB chat at 11 a.m. today, so stop by in between last-minute shopping if you have time.
Also, Seattle head coach Pete Carroll will have his regular Monday afternoon press conference at 3 p.m. today, and we’ll have a report from the VMAC.
A quick check of the playoff picture shows the Seahawks have clinched a postseason berth, and are holding down the No. 5 spot in the NFC wild card picture, and would play No. 4 Washington (9-6) if the playoff started today.
However, Washington hosts Dallas (8-7) on Sunday night, with the winner taking home the NFC East crown. So what do you think is the best matchup on the road for the Seahawks, the Redskins ore the Cowboys?
Here’s my game story. Defensive end Red Bryant had this to say about his team’s dominant performances over the last three games. “We’re doing what we do,” he said. “We’re going to play tough. We’re going to play physical. We’re going to execute, and whatever the score is, that’s the score.”
Dave Boling of The News Tribune writes that the Seahawks have earned the title of the best team in the NFL after another impressive performance. Boling: “The Seattle Seahawks are now the best team in the National Football League.You can argue the point with them if you want, but it might cost you some teeth.Because that’s how the Seahawks reached this stage, by playing defense like a pack of wolves, and approaching every play with an intensity generally reserved for a fist fight.”
John McGrath of The News Tribune says that one team showed up at CenturyLink Field, and the other team … not so much. McGrath: “It wouldn’t be accurate to say Sunday night meant nothing to the Niners. It just would be more accurate to say Sunday night meant everything to the Seahawks.”
Cornerback Richard Sherman played well with just a day of practice this week, returning a blocked field goal 90 yards and hauling in a team-leading seventh interception. Sherman said a looming, four-game suspension has not taken away his ability to focus. “It’s not that weird,” Sherman said. “I’m from the inner city. I’m from a bad place, and adversity is something you always have in your life. And you just have to meet that adversity head on. I’ve done it my whole life, and this is just another opportunity.”
Ryan Divish of The News Tribune talks with Doug Baldwin after the game. The Stanford product finished with a team-high four receptions for 53 yards, including two scores, and admitted to relishing his first win over former Stanford head coach Jim Harbaugh.
Don Ruiz of The News Tribune takes in the San Francisco locker room, where players looked to quickly put this one in the rear view mirror. “Every time you’re on the field you’re learning something,” said quarterback Colin Kaepernick, a second-year player out of Nevada. “We just have to take what we can from this game into next week. … I think the whole team knows that if you get down you have to keep scoring points. We didn’t do that tonight.”
Clare Farnsworth of Seahawks.com writes that Russell Wilson is his player of the game. With 25 touchdown passes, Wilson is one short of Peyton Manning’s rookie record of 26, set in 1998.
Jerry Brewer of The Seattle Times says believe it – Seahawks are the best team in the league. Brewer: “OK, now the nation knows, too: The Seahawks are on something ridiculous right now. Something more effective than Adderall, even. And it’s pure and potent. It’s a level of focus and spirit and commitment that you haven’t seen from this football team since, oh, 2005.”
Steve Kelly of The Seattle Times writes the Seahawks sent a message to the 49ers by delivering bone-crushing blows at every opportunity.
Art Thiel of Sportspressnw.com wades into unchartered territory, lobbing bouquets the Seahawks’ direction. Thiel: “The words unspoken in Seattle for seven years since the infamy in Detroit, now may be used with reckless abandon. Super Bowl. Not saying the Seahawks will make it. It’s just that there does not appear to be a better team in the NFC. Besides, it’s Christmas when dreams are the theme, and Seattle’s sugar plum fairies just danced on the heads of the San Francisco 49ers.”
Mike Silver of Yahoo Sports says that Pete Carroll showed class by not running up the score on Jim Harbaugh. Silver: “While Carroll’s respect for Harbaugh, against whom he had a 1-5 record (including 0-3 in the pros) coming in, seems to be sincere, beating him was undeniably sweet. Carroll said late Sunday night that though he never considered succumbing to the temptation to go for two after Seattle’s last touchdown, ‘everybody else around me [had that thought]. A lot of people reminded me about it.’”
Chris Burke of Sports Illustrated writes that everything is coming together for Seattle – a scary proposition for the rest of the league.
Matt Bowen of the National Football Post writes that he’s been most impressive with Wilson’s ability to make throws outside the numbers.
Lindsay Jones of USA Today says no one in the NFL is having as much right now as Seattle.