Seahawks Insider

Dominant themes in Seahawks’ locker room after win over Arizona: Unity; Lynch talking — or not

Post by Gregg Bell / The News Tribune on Nov. 23, 2014 at 11:30 pm with 106 Comments »
November 23, 2014 11:36 pm

Two issues dominated the postgame scene inside the Seahawks’ locker room following today’s reviving, 19-3 win over NFC West-leading Arizona:

1. The meeting of more unity and trust 10 “core” veteran players had with coach Pete Carroll a couple days ago, and the effect that had on the most complete defensive effort of the season.

2. The ongoing sideshow that follows Marshawn Lynch’s every move — and even fewer words.

Doug Baldwin, Kam Chancellor, Marshawn Lynch, Russell Wilson, Richard Sherman and Earl Thomas were among the 10, self-described “core” veterans that met a few days ago with coach Pete Carroll to re-set the Super Bowl champions’ azimuth for the final six games of their so-far rocky 2014 season.

Those veterans feel this thrust of trust led to Sunday’s grounding of the previously soaring Cardinals – and may turn around Seattle’s season in time for a late-season push toward another postseason appearance.

“I think so,” Baldwin said. “Everyone who plays in the NFL is talented, athletically, is gifted physically. However, the subtle difference between what’s good, what’s great and what’s legendary is the mental side of it and also the emotional side of it.

“It’s us trusting each other. Feeling each other. Feeling what it is to play as a team.”

The wide receiver and team leader went deeper. And not on a post pattern, either.

“That was the theme of the week; we had to get back to trusting each other,” Baldwin said. “I spoke to Earl about it earlier in the week. I told him a team in order for a team or a collective group to live and to thrive the individual must die. Not necessarily die as in, you’re not breathing. It means the ego. We as a collective must realize if we trust everyone on this team, if we trust each individual, each other, to go out there … do what we are supposed to do and not try to do too much and trust each other, then the sky will be the limit for us.

“We will be unstoppable, because we will all be playing together. … I feel like today we kind of found it. Trusting each other, respecting each other, going out and playing for each other.”

How did that show up while Seattle’s offense drove six times to Arizona’s 20 or beyond and its defense throttled the Cardinals to their season lows in points and yards (204) today?

“You can see the enthusiasm,” Baldwin said. “You can see all the pieces playing together. There wasn’t anyone out of position trying to do too much, trying to make a play on an individual basis. It was, ‘Let’s just go out there and do this together.’”

The younger recipients got the message.

“When we play as a team, I really think we are unstoppable,” said tight end Cooper Helfet, who caught the clinching touchdown pass from Wilson late in the third quarter. “We kind of embraced ‘We all we got. We all we need.’”

As for Lynch … Just like Denver in February’s Super Bowl, he finished with 39 yards on 15 carries. The Cardinals’ third-ranked run defense blitzed to stop Lynch’s running as much as Wilson’s passing.

But that was not even half his story.

Lynch was out for two of the drives that first half with what the team announced was a recurrence of his sore lower back; Carroll said afterward was nausea.

“He got sick to his stomach.  He was about ready to throw up over on the sidelines, so he had to wait it out,” Carroll said.’

His back looked looser at the start today then it was last week in the bitter cold of Kansas City. He looked elusive and fluid on Seattle’s first drive. But then he sat out the next two — Robert Turbin replaced him, with Christine Michael nowhere to be found. Michael and third quarterback Tarvaris Jackson were the only two active Seahawks to not appear in the game. His back has been a bigger issue keeping him off the field the last two games than it was in the first nine. That’s a concern with the Seahawks and Lynch getting just three days between this win and the Thanksgiving-night showdown at San Francisco. The Seahawks practice tomorrow and Tuesday, normally days the players have off from the field.

Lynch, by the way, not only jogged off the field with his teammates at the start of halftime but skipped into the Seahawks’ locker room. Apparently he only stays out when the wind chill is 10 degrees, as it was when he stayed outside on Seattle’s bench at halftime to stretch his back and get treatment for it last week at Kansas City.

After the game, Lynch may have avoided another $100,000 fine from the NFL for not talking to the media. He sat at his locker wearing a plaid, hunter-style, fuzzy hat with ear flaps and answering 22 questions with 54 words in 3½ minutes of mostly “yeah.”

Excuse the typos, but there is all of what he said, verbatim, at his locker.

LynchpostgameAZAnd this was the scene. Check out the hat:

lynchpostgamesceneAZOr the video, posted by SB Nation.

We’ve discussed this here before, but to reiterate: I and most of my colleagues in the Seattle-area media have no issue with Lynch not talking after games or even between them, for that matter. That’s his deal, his preference, his vibe. And when he is forced to talk, it’s a useless, frustrating and frankly demeaning waste of taste for him and for us. So why do it?

Well, beyond the NFL collective bargaining agreement and contracts require players be available to media members on a regular basis throughout the season, the national media who have been coming to cover Seahawks games across the country this season with increasing frequency warranted to a Super Bowl-champion team complains. They find Lynch gone from locker rooms and are aghast, affronted or whatever. They have called or e-mailed NFL media officials on multiple occasions this season. That is what prompted the league to issue Lynch a $100,000 fine this week for not talking following his 124-yard rushing day last week at Kansas City.

To underscore the league media’s infatuation with how accessible Lynch is or isn’t, consider that after I tweeted the above transcript today Yahoo! Sports, ESPN and ABC another national outlets picked it up and blew it out.

You have to hand it to Lynch: What he did today, however useless in reporting for stories and sound bites, likely by the letter of NFL law saved him another $100,000 fine.

 

Leave a comment Comments → 106
  1. FleaFlicker says:

    Much needed win today. Defense played a complete game for the first time in a while.

    Offense – man, our line was getting smoked by the Cards’ scheme. Something like 13 total plays for loss and a ton of hurries. And red zone production was atrocious.

    But there’s no such thing as an ugly win in the NFL. Stay hot, boys. Stay hot. We can do this.

  2. It seems that Marshawn has figured out how to do it. You have to be available to be interviewed but he doesn’t need to make any sense. Fine with me, Marshawn, just keep helping your community, and keep on making yards for your team, and keep on being true to yourself.

    Good enough for me.

  3. montanamike2 says:

    Excellent win, a true team effort and the tackling was 500% better.
    You could see the chemistry was there. I think Marshawn is back with the team if you know what i mean, if he keeps his interviews like that there’s a good chance the media will eventually leave him alone. Wilson is a godsend! I don’t think any other QB in the league could be unfazed by what the ‘Cards threw at him and we still dominated. Resigning Wagner is a top priority with Wilson. I was nervous all week, didn’t sleep much and then watched a great game, now i can relax. I thought it was a blessing that Carpenter was out, i was wrong. Baily looked way over matched and even a little small. This doesn’t make me a huge Carp fan all of a sudden though.

  4. montanamike2 says:

    That last touchdown that robbed us of a win at KC because the refs screwed up would’ve helped a lot. How come no one gets penalties except us in games we play, seriously i understand the false starts but the other teams are getting away with murder on PI’s.

  5. montanamike2 says:

    Where was Michael, did he have a fit with all this talk of Marshawn resigning or are they keeping him for Thursday?

  6. GeorgiaHawk says:

    I agree with all your thoughts Montana.

    That D-line Arizona has is huge & tall but can they chase Wilson around all day without wearing down in the 4th Quarter?

    They certainly took advantage of our 4th string center though.

    I was hoping some of our WRs would step it up a little more but our TEs certainly did so that was great to see.

    This was a great win for us & a statement to the rest of the NFL that the Super Bowl champs are ready to fight to the end together as a team hungry for more than just being satisfied with one championship.

    Go Hawks!!!

  7. DanielleMND says:
  8. montanamike2 says:

    Cooper Helfet had a real breakout performance.

  9. The Defense was dominating. If they could go on the road and perform like this, the Seahawks would finish the year 9-0. The Seahawks are actually one of the healthiest teams in the NFL right now.

    But…

    They played a beat up Cardinals team whose strengths played into the Seahawks strengths. I predicted the Cardinals would score no more than 10 points before the game. Their loss of Palmer and Fitzgerald killed them. The good thing is the remaining offenses the Seahawks face look just like this.

    Somehow, Tony Moeaki had as many catches and yards as WRs 1-4 combined. WR 5 had more catches than WRs 1-4 combined. This can only continue with wins if the Seahawks Defense holds the remaining opponents under 250 yards each and every game. Playing Richardson and Norwood these many snaps is still an extremely risky move.

    And the Chiefs and Cardinals game shows us how important home field is to the Seahawks hopes to make noise in the playoffs.

  10. Should say “WR 5 had more YARDS than WRs 1-4 combined.”

  11. Southendzone says:

    I love Marshawn’s reaction and I’d do the exact same thing. For one I’d be ultra pissed off about losing the $100k fine.

    I know there’s a bylaw about it in the CBA, but the national outlets complaining about it and getting him in trouble, what the hell do they expect now? He’s not a circus animal they get to poke with a stick and ask him to do tricks for them.

    You hear from different sources like the espn E:60, from Doug Baldwin (in Sea Times article on Marshawn last week) that trust is huge to him and if you cross him you’ll never regain it. So if you’re NFLNET or ESPN, you go get him fined and think now you have the upper hand and he’s going to help you out EVER, in ANY WAY… wrong.

  12. confucious says:

    I predicted a Seahawks loss and am grateful I was wrong. The defense looked fantastic. That’s the best they’ve looked at least since Green Bay and probably all year.
    The offense didn’t turn the ball over and they scored a few points. It’s really saying something that they scored at all with a “ghost man” oline. I hope Tjack is staying loose because if RW keeps taking the beating he took yesterday he might not last long.
    Seriously though, the offense looked to get into a rhythm toward the end of the game. Which was good to see.
    I’m looking forward to Thursday to see if we can keep this thing going.

  13. madpunter88 says:

    I agree it seems a demeaning exercise for Lynch to be interviewed. But it would seem the press, in particular the national press, gets far more column space out of talking about Lynch not talking then they would if he answered questions like every other player.

  14. joeradio says:

    We’re a long ways away from getting where we need to go. Win on Thursday and the path becomes a lot more clearer.

    GO HAWKS!

  15. ChrisHolmes says:

    National media guys need a punch in the face.

  16. banosser says:

    Gawd the national media are such a bunch of arrogant assholes

  17. oldtallguy says:

    This was a SEAHAWK defense that dominates. Best game of the year. Wagner is the Captain and possibly the most important of a defense the could have 2 future HOF players. Boom Boom Kam was back and hopefully stays healthily. Wags needs to be first priority to resign then the rest of cap can be given to RW

  18. Hammajamma says:

    Trust? Playing for each other? Whatever, Doug. How about getting Wagner back and Cam returning to form? Everything else looks the same.

  19. abqhwkfn says:

    Great win. On to next week. Does Lem get the start on Thursday or do they roll with Lewis? I felt our guys were gonna be wasted after the AZ game and therefore struggle on turkey day. However, I dont feel they expended as much energy as I initially thought they would. Instead they delivered a beating as opposed to participating in a mutual slug fest. I say we win on Thursday night! And keep on rolling towards the post season. Go Hawks!

  20. montanamike2 says:

    It’s games like last night that showed me how incredible RW is. Well put abqhwkfn, it was a beating.

  21. Gregg Bell says:

    Jeanpierre or Lewis will be a theme these next three days. My sense is Jeanpierre starts Thursday night.

  22. Baldwin is right on. Ive been bitching all year that Carrol has failed to mold this group into a team, something greater than the sum of its parts. The Harvin Hangover was still in effect until this week. Last week they almost became a true TEAM, this week they did it. They got back to playing as a whole, not a bunch of individuals.

    All year you’ve seen it, especially on defense; sloppy tackling, sloppy technique, and on the D-line and backers guys filling the wrong gaps, trying to do their neighbors jobs and leaving the backside cutback lanes open…THe same stuff that was going on in 2012. Now, finally, for the first time all year, they quit that crap and everyone brought their best without trying to be superman.

    When you do that, it allows the coaches scheme to do what its supposed to, and you actually end up with more chances for individual athleticism to shine.

    Look at Bruce Irvin; not many stats Sunday, but he absolutely was a major driving force of the win. He played hard, fast and disciplined and really made a difference. He played within the scheme, and when the scheme worked, his athleticism stuck out and he made a good play great. When the scheme didnt work so well, his doing his job and not his neighbors allowed his neighbor to make the play. Thats what playing as a team will get you.

    Sure, Pabs is right that AZ was beat up. So are we. Wags isnt 100%, though his return made an Epic difference. Mebane is out, and that loss cannot be overstated. Unger is out, again, cannot be overstated. Not to mention Lane isnt 100% either.

    Our offensive line is playing a sixth or seventh round backup at LG, a fourth string C, and a rookie RT. Helfet’s ankle is still gimpy. We’re still battered, but getting healthier. Just in time!

  23. Hammajamma says:

    “The Harvin Hangover was still in effect until this week.”

    Sorry, Slave, but I think that’s silly. Winning breeds unity.

  24. Lewis is a fine player when he blocks one on one. I cant help but wish he was competing at G. I really like him as a pure blocker. But he doesnt know the scheme worth a damn, and doesnt have the experience to guess what the defense is up to, when they are bluffing etc, like Unger.

    Many times on Sunday I saw five or six Seahawk linemen fail to block 4 Cards defenders in pass pro; guys were confused, with no one to block, and it was a mess. Unless our guys are the worst linemen in the history of the NFL (Which Im not quite buying), it was because of faulty pass protections called by Lewis.

    Im not blaming it all on Lewis, I was livid with the performance of our offensive line much of the day. Sweezy is flat awful in pass pro, not to mention Britt, Bailey and Whats Left of Russel Okung. And the line couldnt run block to save their lives, not even in one on one situations.

    But having Lem start at C next week would go a LONG ways towards helping the line play better and more consistent. Which must happen if we’re to make the playoffs, let alone win in the playoffs.

  25. Hamma–THe players think so. Have you ever played on a team?

  26. montanamike2 says:

    I’m still wondering what is up with Michael?

  27. I wish the NFL would just leave Marshawn alone. What’s the point of forcing him to speak? Just find someone else who wants to speak.

  28. Each team should be able to designate one player that is excused from meeting with the press after a game. Not just for someone who doesn’t like speaking with them. But what about people with phobia’s or players you as a coach don’t really want gabbing out there, like say, Joe Namath. This is something that should be addressed by the NFL.

    There’s 53 on a team, and I’d like to hear from some fresh blood that made a play that day. Exactly like Gregg brought to us with Coop in the previous thread. National media is turning into paparazzi and Gregg brings a breath of fresh air and some class to the group.

  29. And yes, what is up with Christine Michael? I do not understand why they drafted him or what their plan is for him.

  30. Hammajamma says:

    Slave–

    Yes, I’ve played on many teams. Even championship teams. I’ve been in “players only” meetings. Captains/Coahes meetings. One on one, two on one, position group, you name it. I’ve played with guys who didn’t like eachother and guys who did.

    What would these guys be saying if they lost? I’ve been hearing much of the same from them throughout the season and frankly I’ve heard it throughout much of my athletic career. In some cases it matters but in many cases I found it more a buy product of simply having better talent and guys just doing their jobs.

    Chemistry can be important, but winning has a strange way of making guys feel more together.

    What I saw yesterday was a defense getting important players back who played with passion and a AZ team that made a few mistakes with a mediocre QB. I also saw an offense that looked substantially the same as they usually do against a very good AZ defense. Still can’t pass protect or pound the ball in the red zone.

    If you’re asserting they won that game due to a team meeting, I’m going to have to disagree.

  31. Those were screen passes where the Seahawks OL weren’t blocking. They were releasing down field.

    Instead of forcing it on those plays, Wilson took the sack. Most other QBs probably would have thrown it away. Yet the OL will get the blame here because it’s the easy thing to do. Those sacks were on the QB.

    The Seahawks are one of the most healthy, if not the most healthy team at this point.

  32. Winning breeds unity….. No Winning can breed unity on the outside but intentional unity building builds true unity. Having Unity on a team take work – it doesn’t just happen.

  33. Hamma–I think the mental mistakes and sloppy technique that have plagued them all year were cleaned up, in large part because of that meeting. Guys quit trying to be Superman, and did their jobs. They trusted the scheme and each other, instead of running around half-assed trying to be heroes.

    Ive been on teams that were winning, and I didnt like my teammates nor they me. We won anyway, because we all did our jobs and trusted each other to do our little part of the whole. Some guys were like me–we shouldnt have been able to do our job because we were too small and too slow. But together we managed just fine. But we werent buddies thats for sure.

    I think had we been closer, we could have won even more. And yeah, I guess we were closer than the year before when we sucked, but not really. Winning didnt create camaraderie, but teammwork did help us win.

    Best of both worlds is far preferable, and I think Seattle is getting back there.

    Remember, Carrol said he didnt think his young team really came together until last year. Its why they didnt win the SB in 2012. They would have won 3 more games easily in the regular season had they been a cohesive, close-knit team. Last year they were, this year they have struggled with that, but hopefully are getting back in the groove.

  34. Pabs–No, Im not talking about the botched screen plays. Those were awful too, but I didnt blame the releasing linemen. I know a screen play and how its run.

    And there were MANY plays where the five linemen couldnt block 4 Cardinals. Sometimes it looked like a guy just getting beaten (Sweezy, Britt), but often it looked like scheme confusion. Sheesh, how hard can it be to block a white jersey, or help your neighbor?!

    Hamma–Yeah, if Seattle had lost this one they’d be having more meeting trying to get the unity back. I think they almost had it last week, but too much Supermanning by the defense and Unger going down just as we were gonna take the lead did us in.

    I think this team is coming together. Thanksgiving game is huge. Every game is huge now. This is championship football!

  35. MoSeahawk12 says:

    Great point pabuwal. The screen is designed to let the dlineman up the field so they overrun the running back in the screen. Our line didn’t do a great job selling it though. The biggest issue I have with all the screens Bevell called was that the CardsD is too fast and defend the screen well. They already had spies on Wilson and that also hampers success on screen plays.

  36. FleaFlicker says:

    blocis: what’s up with C. Michael? When we drafted that kid, was still a very large possibility of Lynch starting 2013 with a 4 game or more suspension for that borderline DUI in California. In a sense, they had to grab a running back with potential to start right out the gate. In the end, Lynch’s legal team got the charge reduced but that wasn’t something on which the F.O. could count.

  37. Did Lem play any?

  38. I also was wondering if Lemuel played any – I have looked for week 12 snap counts but they aren’t up yet.

  39. @Flea – yes, I know that Lynch is a big (and valid) reason that Michael isn’t getting alot of snaps. I have no issue with this.

    But, I still think that the kid, who is a high draft choice, should be getting SOME snaps. Last week he got 2 snaps. This week I think he got zero. How is he going to learn and grow averaging 1 snap per week? Is there another issue, (other than Lynch being a terrific RB)?

  40. Perhaps Michaels onfield reactions to the playcall and/or audibles that some mentioned played into his not getting any playing time. Who knows? We know the kid can run the ball, and catch it. He’s tough and fast. What we don’t know is his every-day attitude, his understanding of the offense and the backs role in it, etc.

    Turbin did fine backing up Lynch, and has earned what little playing time he gets. It might be nothing more than that. When youre third on the depth chart and behind Lynch, you aren’t going to get many plays.

  41. FleaFlicker says:

    blocis: I think if our red zone production has been up to par, i.e. had a bankable lead…we would have seen some C. Michael. But with the game still on the line, never wrong to go with Marshawn.

    With SF bringing the #2 pass defense to the Thanksgiving table, we don’t have the WR group to challenge them in that phase. I think we see an active C. Michael on Thursday with a ton of carries from Lynch, Turbo, Michael, and RW.

    Hoping for a grinding 13-9 win this week.

  42. montanamike2 says:

    That we could dominate like that while having your QB sacked 7 games! That’s a good defense.

  43. SandpointHawk says:

    When Wilson can call an audible at the line of scrimmage and C. Michael learns not shake his head in disgust, (telegraphing the play to the opposing defense)…he’ll get more playing time.

  44. Man, I was excited to see Moeaki and Helfet catching passes. I just wish Baldwin and Kearse were catching more downfield passes to go along with it. Despite yet another miserably pathetic showing from our offensive line, the offense made some big plays and we won by 16 points vs a badass defense. I’ll take it!

    Helfets diving for the pylon was awesome! So was his WWF style take-down of the dude who recovered the blocked punt. He’s a tough competitor, and Im glad he’s finally on the AR and making plays.

    I thought our D-line did a much better job this week. Pleased with Williams especially. Wags coming back was obviously a very big deal to our defense, and Chancellor almost looked like himself out there. Even Sherm got a big hit in!

    I think we all know the offense is a mess, and will continue to struggle. But they proved they can still muster the occasional big play even vs a great defense, so there is hope. If they can keep that up, despite having consistency issues, the offense will force defenses to respect the whole field, which will open things up in the run game again.

    Just like Denver in the SB, AZ did everything to stop Lynch and succeeded. But they lost by 16 points! Now teams will have to wonder, is selling out to stop Lynch worth it? But what else can they do, lol?!

    Injury plagued team with a backup qb or not, that was a great game by the D, and the offense chipped away and made some things happen. They had another 7 points sitting there at the end, so give them credit for that too. They were still driving when Carrol pulled the plug.

    Also, contrast the Pats running up the score with Carrol having us take a knee. One is Class, the other Crass…

  45. GeorgiaHawk says:

    With Willis & Bowman out I think we will challenge them with our TEs much like we did with Arizona.

    CM was/is insurance.
    I wouldn’t be surprised if we draft a more physical RB in next years draft.
    Some good ones could fall to us.

    My hope though is that we draft a bigger more talented WR, which seems to be my hope almost every year along with a stud D-lineman.

  46. Southendzone says:

    Thursday is going to be an epic battle. 9ers gonna be so mad bout the NFCCG still, but they aren’t dominant enough to be but a 1pt favorite right now.

    I would NOT bet on this game, it’s about as 50/50 as you can get.

  47. MoSeahawk12 says:

    I won five bucks on a bet on our knell down at the end. My Cardinals friend said we were going to punch it in to run up the score and I said nope, Wilson will take a knee. Five bucks in hand. Glad they handled the win with class. There is no reason to run up the score. We play these guys again and they will already be more than motivated to take us out in their home. I’m glad they geared it down. Save as much energy for the 9ers in three days.

  48. Exactly, Mo. Running up the score is bush-league. Im so glad we have a guy like Carrol instead of a Bellicheat. Winning is great, but how you get there–and what you do when you get there–is just as important.

  49. Pabs’ boy Lockette made a big play vs AZ–his first since week Three. Perhaps he can make another big play vs the Niners. That would be nice. And maybe we can actually have a big passing play that scores a TD.

    I didnt see Walters get any time at WR. Nice to see Norwood in, but he did nothing much.

    Why in the HELL didnt we see more of Tukuafu vs AZ?! I surely want to see a LOT more of that guy blocking for Lynch. He’s a load, and while we dont always get big gains, we get more than the usual one yard Lynch was able to get Sunday.

    I too think backs and TE’s will have to carry the majority of the passing load. There’s no way our line can protect for more than a three-step-drop vs the Niners. Fortunately, Moeaki can block and run short routes, and Helfet and Willson have the speed to run away from LB’s.

    That rookie LB for the Whiners is pretty damn good though. He’s not really a dropoff from Bowman or Willis.

  50. TallyHawk says:

    I don’t understand how any of you are still amazed or upset by the play of the o line. Especially with Unger out. It’s not going to magically get better. The key to the offense moving the ball is Russell being accurate in his throws and them taking care of the ball. Yesterday was textbook for how this team needs to play to be successful, minus not getting into the endzone in the red zone.

  51. Ray_Maines says:

    Does Hauschka’s blocked FG count as a miss in his accuracy statistics?

  52. “All year you’ve seen it, especially on defense; sloppy tackling, sloppy technique, and on the D-line and backers guys filling the wrong gaps, trying to do their neighbors jobs and leaving the backside cutback lanes open…THe same stuff that was going on in 2012. Now, finally, for the first time all year, they quit that crap and everyone brought their best without trying to be superman.”

    and yet . . .http://espn.go.com/nfl/statistics/team/_/stat/total/sort/totalPointsPerGame/position/defense

    how can we be as bad as you say, and still be the #1 defense in football? we’re still pretty good, and have been pretty good all year. can’t expect perfection, or you will always be disappointed.

  53. The block counts as a miss because his foot contacted the ball.

  54. Ray–Dont know, but it should. That kick practically hit his own line in the back of the head, it was WAAAAY too low…

    pdway–We’re a pretty good D, just not as good as last year. Though we’re becoming better at not giving up a long final drive. For a long stretch this season, they werent good at all. We’ve struggled. But no one said we werent a good D.

    And much of the problems were correctable mistakes by players, not poor scheme calls or things like that. And now that they’ve fixed those issues–and had a couple guys come back from injury–they are once again a very good defense.

    It was great to have Lane back. I like Burley, but Lane is better right now by far. It was cool to see AZ unable to constantly throw to the slot WR, since Lane was doing his job at a high level. And having Wags back at MLB–and thus putting Wright back at OLB and Smith to the bench–was simply HUGE for this defense. Wags just has a way of sliding off blocks to fill the hole and make a play that no one else on the team has at MIKE.

    Tally–I saw not only the entire line failing as a whole, but individuals like Sweezy, Bailey, and Britt stink it up in pass pro and in the run game. That shoudlnt be happening as often as it does, whether Unger is out or not. Yes, its clear that not having Ungers smarts is killing this line, but its more than that, and its awful to watch.

    Russel WAS accurate–except on a couple throws (the pathetic Rainbow Bomb to Norwood etc). The problem was, he rarely had time to look downfield or set his feet to throw.

    You cant put the cart in front of the horse and expect to go far. If we can pass pro at even a mediocre level, RW WILL be accurate, and he WILL find a way to shred defenses–with his feet and his arm. Fail to protect him, and the offense will stall out.

  55. Steffanator says:

    If you really want to know why Marshawn doesn’t want to talk to reporters then go to a Bill’s blog and ask the guys. I’m originally from West Seneca NY where the flood is, but I own a home here in Seattle for years and am a ultra 12. I love Lynch as our running back and hope he stays for a couple more years but the things he did in Buffalo, he wants no one to ask him about. He had a big mouth there and talked his butt off. He and his possie tore up Allen Town and did things that really hurt people that I won’t mention unless someone asks me. I think they’re best left unsaid. But thats the reason, not that he’s so private…I’m for giving the guy his second chance in life but he’s playing us.

  56. GeorgiaHawk says:

    Exactly TallyHawk.

    Our O-lines level of overall success rides primarily on Okung & Ungers health.

    When that becomes an issue it greatly affects the overall play of the lines continuity like we have seen last year & this year.

    Our young talented but inexperienced lineman like Sweezy & Britt just don’t have the experience yet to overcome having 4th stringers playing around them.

    Really who does?

    The lines overall expectations this season for me have never been high at all with a rookie RT, Carp a big ? & the probability of another season with Okungers nagging injuries.

    I never understood why anyone would build expectations up on them in the beginning of the year.

    If they can keep winning like last year & get Unger back healthy things will get much better.

    Especially for Britt & Sweezy.

  57. MoSeahawk12 says:

    Wow, guys on AZ sports radio just said “stats be damned, Russell Wilson might just be the best player in the NFL.” They weren’t being sarcastic or cute. They went on to say he is such a rare talent and strong leader. He took some big shots and never backed down. They said he was impervious to pressure. He willed another win and without him they feel the Seahawks would maybe be a five win team even with the great defense. They are much more concerned about Seattle than they are about the 9ers. These guys are pro Cardinals, but are certainly giving massive praise to our team.

    http://arizonasports.com/streams/kmvpfm.php

  58. chuck_easton says:

    I can back STTBM on one particular play I saw.

    Both Sweezy and Britt double teamed the interior lineman and let the end run free into the backfield without even being touched.

    Obviously a line error.

  59. Dukeshire says:

    I’m seeing nothing that indicates Okung will be back next year. Not only is he still a false start machine, he now is missing assignments, allowing the RDE to rush free. His play, related to health or not, has declined noticeably in just a year, let alone the past two. If I’m in the Seattle FO, LT is the first place I start to improve this o line.

    On the flip side, literally, Britt is improving game by game. Not that he still doesn’t have miles to go, but I see him developing into a great RT.

  60. chuck_easton says:

    So,

    I am enjoying yesterday’s win. It was good to see the D play truer to their style of last year.

    But, there is still a lot of work to be done.

    Seattle is currently ahead of SF based on Division record. Seattle loses the wildcard tie breaker to Detroit based on strength of schedule.

    Sitting in 7th place looking in on the play offs isn’t what this team or the fans want or expect.

    Seattle needs to win at Arizona, win at Philly, beat SF at home, beat St. Louis at home and try and eek out a win this Thursday.

    12-4 or 11-5 and they make the playoffs. 10-6 likely has them on the outside looking in.

    4-1 or 5-0 is mandatory at this point. 3-2 doesn’t cut it.

  61. MikeFromNewJersey says:

    That seems to happen an awful lot. We seem to be getting out schemed on passing downs with runners coming in free..

    Actually Okung has been playing pretty well the last few weeks, he has been fine. I’m wondering if Lem will start this week?

  62. Dukeshire says:

    “Actually Okung has been playing pretty well the last few weeks, he has been fine. I’m wondering if Lem will start this week?”

    I just don’t see it. I want to, but I see far too many errors for a player with his experience.

  63. PFF on Okung yesterday –

    Russell Okung, LT: +4.4

    Breakdown: The less heralded Russell on Seattle’s offense, Okung had a clean sheet in pass protection allowing no pressures in 32 passing snaps. Also made several nice blocks in the run game to round out his grade, including a pair of seals on Calais Campbell inside.

    Signature Stat: After seven penalties in a span of three games early in the season, Okung hasn’t been penalized in his last five games.

  64. ChrisHolmes says:

    “Instead of forcing it on those plays, Wilson took the sack. Most other QBs probably would have thrown it away. Yet the OL will get the blame here because it’s the easy thing to do. Those sacks were on the QB.”

    No, those sacks were on the OL. Go back and look at them again.

    Screen plays take time to develop properly. The OL’s job is to block-release on a screen. They’re coached to sell the pass block before releasing to the second level. That serves two purposes: a) sell the defense on a pass play so they pass rush and don’t sniff the screen out, and b) give the play time to develop properly (the RB has to release and be in position to make a catch or the whole thing is blown).

    But watch Seattle’s OL, especially Baily early in the first half. He’s so concerned with getting to the second level blocking assignment that he doesn’t even attempt to block his man. He’s completely ignoring the first responsibility of the play, and as a result, the play has no time to develop properly, and Russell has to eat it.

    You can’t run screen plays by just releasing offensive linemen upfield. You have to chip-block the first line of defense. Screen plays take time to develop. Free-release linemen, without a block/release, force the quarterback to throw before the receiver is in position, and before the blocking is setup properly.

    It’s a fail by the OL. And Seattle’s OL failed bigtime, again, yesterday.

  65. Actually, Okung has NOT been playing well the past few weeks. He was absolutely blown up on a running play fourth down vs KC. And he’s been a total turnstile in pass pro. The guys a shell of his former self.

    And Georgia, Sweezy sucks only partly because he’s playing next to a rookie and a fourth string C. He just sucks, period, because he cant block consistently well. He cant block consistently well in the run game, though he does make some badass second-level blocks, and he stinks one-on-one in pass pro. He still gets confused as to who to block in pass pro on blitzes, which is inexcusable three years into the NFL.

    And Britt looks every bit the overmatched rookie that he is. Jury is still out on him, wont know what we have there till next year at the earliest. At this point, I think he’d look a lot better with a competent RG next to him.

  66. Pabs–Very interesting. He didnt seem to be fairing well when I watched him Sunday, but it was also hard to tell just who was screwing up, since it looked like a jailbreak much of the time.

    I still think he was bad vs KC, and he’s looked worse than mediocre all year. IT would be nice if this was the start of a trend, Okung getting healthy and back to playing near the level he’s being paid.

  67. TallyHawk says:

    I wasn’t trying to say the O Line is fun to watch or that I don’t get frustrated by it. I expect them to be poor and am grateful we have a QB that works miracles at times. It just seems like so many of you expect them to be magically better every game then are shocked and outraged that they aren’t.

  68. I still don’t understand lining up in shotgun on all the third and short plays. Wilson never runs in those situations and Lynch always gets hit like 3 yrds behind the line, makes no sense, never works, but yet, ever f’n time they do it.

  69. I understand the reason Wilson is in shotgun 99% (OL), but on the third and short I just don’t get it.

  70. Tally–I try to be hopeful and look on the bright side. I expected the line to be better than this, because I expected a lot more from Carp and Sweezy. And Britt. You can see Seattle probably should have traded up to get a T they liked better than Britt. He’s not ready for the NFL. Perhaps next year he’ll be pretty good…

    Just when we got Unger back and things were looking up, he got hurt again and its back to square one. I really like Lewis’ potential–I think he’s a good blocker–but he’s not as savvy as Unger by any means, and that matters. Im hoping Lem starts this Thursday and does well, he knows the calls and is HUNGRY.

    I really enjoyed the game, outside the play of the O-line. Watching Cooper Helfet go all Madden was a trip! Really thrilled to see Chancellor looking like himself again, and ET playing disciplined. He was a wrecking ball out there once again, but this time in perfect control.

    Maxwell played a very good game. That pick where he abandoned his assignment to jump the route was very Sherman-esque. And I thought Lane played very well, and showed why he’s so important to our D. Without him in the lineup, we’re vulnerable over the middle and underneath. With him there–and Wags and Wright back where they belong–that is no longer the case. Teams arent going to beat us by throwing to the backs and slot WR all the time now…

    If Williams can stay stout at NT like he did Sunday, this D can repeat. Its up to the offense to do enough to get by now. C’mon, Cable, squeeze every bit out of your guys…

  71. GeorgiaHawk says:

    Thanks Mo.

    I’m so glad we have Wilson.

    I feel we can win any game with him.

  72. “Actually Okung has been playing pretty well the last few weeks, he has been fine. I’m wondering if Lem will start this week?”

    agree with this. past two weeks at least. mentioned it the other day. and I agree that he had been terrible for several weeks before he sat out the most recent time. will be a nice development if we can cross one spot off our list of needs.

  73. Tru–I dont get it either. My son keeps asking why teams dont use the I formation anymore…with a 285 lb FB, I dont know either. Why not go Jumbo, with Three TE’s and a FB, in short yardage? Do it at least three times in the game, and as long as you throw out of it once out of three, you keep the D guessing. You go empty backfield, you give them the go ahead to tee off on RW and defend the quick slant.

  74. “They went on to say he is such a rare talent and strong leader. He took some big shots and never backed down. They said he was impervious to pressure”

    I thought he had a great game yesterday too. for all those sacks, just think about the zero interceptions, zero turnovers of it all.

    And I remember thinking about how great AZ was at trapping and tackling him in the 1st half, but that all slipped in the 2nd. 70+ yards rushing for a QB is game-changing. there are few things more disheartening for a defense than a QB who scrambles for a 1st down when you’ve done everything else right on the play.

    he may not be perfect, but there are less than a handful of QB’s who are a better fit for the team we have right now.

  75. Georgia–Of course. If he had a halfway decent line, he’d be unstoppable. Imagine a decent–not great, just decent–line and a real Red Zone threat WR. You know, a big strong, fast guy. He’d be amazing!

    Heck, he already is amazing. Outside his tendency to take too long to run, and his Rainbow lobs, the guy is just incredible. We’re so lucky to have him.

    He’s kharma for the 13 qb drought we went through between Krieg and Hasselbeck, for sure.

  76. Southendzone says:

    One of the sacks I felt was on RW was early in the game when they went empty backfield.

    The guy who sacked him appeared to me to have lined up in an unblocked position pre-snap. Continued to be un-noticed by anyone (Seems like RW would have looked straight at him during the pre-snap reads), then remained unblocked with a straight run at RW after the ball was snapped.

    I could have my opinion swayed by an expert on the subject, but it looked pretty simple from my seat, and since there are no experts in this group, I’m gonna stick with my call.

  77. You can check out & predict the playoff seedings here:

    http://espn.go.com/nfl/playoffs/machine

  78. No matter how bad an OL does at releasing or selling the screen, it is extremely rare for a QB to ever get sacked on a screen attempt. Current NFL rules give the QB a lot of leeway in throwing the ball away on screen attempts.

  79. montanamike2 says:

    mocarob, that site gives Seattle no love.

  80. TallyHawk says:

    STTBM, I feel you. I think most of us expected them to be better but it hasn’t happened and at this point it’s probably not going to.

    One thing I’d like to see instead of a screen is just a swing pass to the back out of the backfield. Those seem to be more effective. I’d also like to see some bootlegs or roll outs instead of just a straight drop back.

  81. Wow – no one here yelling at Bevell for the play calling? Or play design? Let me do it. The Cardinals were in our face all the first half. They knew where just about every play was going and had at least one guy there ready to stop it, usually more. We have to do more in terms of offensive design so that we’re not so predictable. It reminded me of the Dallas game.

    I’m glad we won and kudos all around for the good stuff. But I sure hope they scrutinize all those plays that went nowhere or backwards, because they were in our playbook, and that is unacceptable.

    I haven’t been a Bevell hater. But I’m getting there pretty quick.

  82. Snappa, i freakin hate Bevell. I can’t figure out why they continue to do those same plays every week. On top of that, it seems like the opening drive is usually perfectly scripted and they move the ball well. Then, drive 2 starts without Lynch and they do bubble screen, and its a 3 and out. I swear this happens week after week. I can’t figure it out. Is he that dumb? Is this more on Pete for not changing this? Something has to give. Praying Bevell will eventually figure it out, but i doubt it. Have a feeling either him or Lynch is gone after this year. I’d take Lynch any day of the year.

    But…i can’t complain with the outcome yesterday. Best game of the season. The LOB was officially back yesterday, and i’m hoping it is here to stay. They are simply dominant when they play like that. Great win, now bring on SF and get another huge win.

  83. Bevells playcalling wasnt great in the first half. Too many predictable plays in the usual situations. Bubble screens! Dude, they just dont work! If they didnt work with Percy, they arent going to work with the guys we have now.

    But Bevells playcalling is severely hampered by Lewis the C’s lack of knowledge and the overall line play (crap). He also did very well in the second half, and had several brilliant plays that worked perfectly–until someone screwed up (like RW waiting too long and underthrowing Norwood on that trick play).

  84. Yes, and giving up on the run because Lynch was out was stupid. Empty backfield on third and 3 or less is asinine! Use the playaction, and use it good. Never, EVER, give the D the tipoff its a pass for sure and you have no backs to protect RW. Thats just dumb. Even when it works, empty backfield on third and short is idiotic.

  85. Ray_Maines says:

    yes it does. Select “Defence” as your criteria and feel all warm and happy.

  86. Dukeshire says:

    That PFF analysis is garbage and I would happily sit down with anyone and break yesterday’s game down.

  87. oldtallguy says:

    God, a Super win and bitch bitch bitch. This site is going to hell.

  88. Not all wins are perfect. So yes, there still is plenty of things to bitch about. Had Palmer been healthy and playing, it could have been a different outcome. While I agree we shouldn’t constantly sit here and bitch about everything, it is perfectly FINE for us as fans to critique play calls and things that NEED to be fixed. Not everything is sunshine and roses. It’s ok to complain. It really is. With that said, we also need to see the good and comment on that too. Which I did. This blog is to talk about everything seahawks related. Good and bad.

  89. Duke – PFF = Absolutely, completely, utterly useless trash.

    STTBM – I COMPLETELY agree about the empty backfield on 3rd down crap and……ugh…… THOSE DAMN SCREENS! Although, when it’s 3rd and 3 or 4, sometimes having RW back there to take off when the defense is thinking pass is handy. But I mostly think that’s RW’s speed and not Bevell’s ASTOUNDING play calls. Man, I’d like to kick him in the brown eye.

  90. jboard1 – Couldn’t of said it better, bro.

  91. jawpeace says:

    Duke, “I’m seeing nothing that indicates Okung will be back next year. Not only is he still a false start machine, he now is missing assignments, allowing the RDE to rush free. His play, related to health or not, has declined noticeably in just a year, let alone the past two. If I’m in the Seattle FO, LT is the first place I start to improve this o line.”

    Okung is not going anywhere next year. Frankly that is one of the dumbest post I have ever seen from you Duke. Number one he is still under contract next year. And his salary drops to 7,280,000 next year and his dead money is 2,280,000. No way in hell do you replace him. Save 5 mil? LOL his replacement unless a rookie or someone we already have on the roster would cost more. With all of our coming free agents to take care of no way does JS cut or trade Okung. Bank on it Okung will be our starting LT next year unless injured.

  92. I dont think PFF’s grades are always crap, but they have graded RW harshly when he had amazing games. Their analysis for WR’s sucks too. THey make complicated stats with gaping logic holes. And in Okung’s case this week, I didnt feel watching the game that he was locking down the left side, so I cant see grading him that highly.

    PFF is a good site for extra info, and for some analysis. But they are far from perfect.

  93. Oldtallguy–THere’s some bitching, true, but its warranted for the most part. No one is making up mistakes or blown plays. No one is saying RW sucked or something stupid like that. And there is lots and lots of praise for the D, RW, and individual players like Helfet, Avril, Wags, Sherm, ET…

    For a team with a crap O-line that struggled to put up 9-12 points in the first half, despite wicked good field position and the D handing them the ball in scoring range, I think the fans are pretty upbeat. We’re almost all thinking we have a chance at the big one once again.

    And that may be delusional. Time will tell. But most are pretty stoked to be at 7-4, what with the early collapse and injuries, Harvin, etc….its been a wild year and its just getting going lol!

  94. MoSeahawk12 says:

    We’re officially in AZ’s head. The sports talk guys are seriously concerned about our team. They’re saying they really hope the 9ers win Thursday because they don’t want it to come down to the December 21st in AZ for the division. They feel that The Seahawks might be getting hot at the wrong time for the Cards. They are worried about Stanton getting it done. They feel our D matches up better against their offense and the fact that they already beat the 9ers gives them confidence moving forward. They say it’s too soon to panic, but they just listed all the things that might go wrong and we are several of those things. Yesterday was more than a good win for us. It might actually cause ripples for the next few weeks.

  95. Southendzone says:

    Well the 1 thing AZ has going for them is that SEA and SF play each other twice. Even if AZ craps the bed, which I believe they will, it’s going to be hard for someone in the NFCW to catch them.

    They are right to worry about Stanton. That guy is not going to earn them a playoff win.

  96. I would be shocked if Okung was gone – they have NOBODY to take his place.

  97. SandpointHawk says:

    Red Zone Efficiency = 1-5… Yeah we had a great defensive game but any way you look at it we still have a lot of red zone problems….

  98. Of course they are worried about Stanton – he stinks. There are only 2 plays they score TDs with Stanton – the throw 10 yards and hope they run 70 yards after the catch or the throw 80 yards.

  99. MoSeahawk12 says:

    Here is the most fun you’ll have watching a Seahawks video this year. Happy Monday! These guys can come of somewhat annoying, but this video is really fun and it’s cool to see Carroll and Wilson’s personalities shine brightly. Russell is so comfortable and isn’t afraid to make fun of himself. You will never see Krapernick do anything like this. Made my day, enjoy all.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WwpD-daFx8U&feature=youtu.be

  100. Stanton threw a TD pass vs us. Dude just got buck fever and dropped it…but yeah, he’s no Carson Palmer.

  101. Dukeshire says:

    “Frankly that is one of the dumbest post I have ever seen from you Duke.”

    That’s my opinion. I couldn’t care any less what you think of it. But I’m really grateful you weighed in.

  102. jawpeace says:

    Glad that you read it right as I was not saying you were dumb. Intelligent people sometimes have dumb post or opinions.(and that is my opinion) You handled it with class, stay classy!

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