Showing posts with label lions. Show all posts
Showing posts with label lions. Show all posts

Monday, October 29, 2012

The Morning After: Seattle Loses To Lions, 28-24

Sidney Rice did not make the critical catch on a deep ball in the second half. Russell Wilson once again threw a costly interception on the road immediately following the defense turning over the Lions. The vaunted defense that had not given up 300 yards in the first five games, has now given up over 300 in each of their past three, including more than 400 yards twice. The defense surrendered another long fourth-quarter drive, and the lead. Seattle was out-coached. The Seahawks special teams never made a play against the worst special teams unit in the NFL. Fans surely have other reasons Seattle lost another winnable game. I know some have said Richard Sherman talked too much pre-game (I disagree), and many have blamed a lackluster pass rush (I agree). The thing is, the reasons do not matter today. Seattle lost. They are 4-4 halfway through the season. That is the only analysis that matters today.

For the fourth time this season, Seattle lost a game it had a chance to win in the final quarter. Playoff teams can afford one or two of those games to go the wrong way. There have been a few seasons where Seahawks fans could look back at one game, and credibly say, "that was the one that cost us." This year, people have been given a variety to choose from. There was the season opener in Arizona, when the team ahead 16-13 in the fourth quarter before giving up an 80-yard touchdown drive, and finally being unable to score a game-winning touchdown with what felt like a dozen chances at the end. There was the Rams game, where the Rams offense never scored a touchdown, Russell Wilson threw three interceptions, Pete Carroll kicked a ridiculous onsides kick to start the second half, and the defense gave up a 74-yard field goal drive in the fourth to require a touchdown to win. Seattle thoroughly outplayed the division-leading 49ers for one half of football, but were only up 6-3, and then were beaten in all three phases in the second half. Then, there was yesterday when the team with three extra days of rest and prep got beaten by the team coming off a short week. Take your pick. Pick a couple, if you like.

The thing is, this first half of 2012 looks completely different with just one win in those four games. A win in any of those division games would put Seattle at 1-2 in the division, with a chance to still take the title if they held serve at home. A win yesterday would have put Seattle at 5-3 after a brutal opening schedule, a clear sign of progress for the coaches, players and fans. The truth is, the Lions offense played a fantastic game. Their coaches deserve credit for out-scheming the Seahawks defense. They took a page out of the 49ers game plan, a page out of the Patriots game plan, and sprinkled in some of their stuff to keep Seattle off-balance all day. I never believed the Lions were as bad as their 2-4 record indicated. This would be a forgivable loss, or at least digestible, if Seattle had taken care of business in St. Louis, or Arizona, or San Francisco. The team surrendered margin for error by losing every one of those games. What a shame.

The season is not over. The second half schedule is still favorable to Seattle. A 6-2 finish is entirely possible, would would get the team to 10 wins. The fair question is, what have the Seahawks done to give fans any reason to expect better than mediocrity? Sure, there have been signature victories over the Cowboys, Patriots, and Packers. Those highlights have been surrounded by disappointments. It is almost unthinkable that the Seahawks could finish the first half of their season mired in mediocrity with wins against those teams on their resume. If you told me Seattle would win those three games, and beat the Panthers on the road before the season started, I would have put the odds of a 4-4 record at about 0.0%. Yet, that's exactly where the team is.

I will publish my 2012 Season Progress Report for the mid-point in the season later this week. In it, you will see signs of the maligned passing game making significant progress, while the defense, running game and special teams, have taken large steps backwards. You will see a team that talks an awful lot about turnovers has only won the turnover battle once in eight games. There will be evidence that the pass rush improvements are not reliable enough to be a factor in more than a few games. This is a team that has been offensively challenged, yet has scored first in every game this year. You will see a muddy picture that befits a .500 team.

The frustration is high right now, but anyone that claims this team has not improved should re-visit the first half of last season. The team was 2-6, allowing 23.1 points/game, while scoring only 15.3. They had lost two home games, were allowing 3.5 sacks/game (1.8 this year), and were averaging only 88.3 rushing yards. Has the team improved? Undoubtedly. Are they playing to their potential? Not even close.

More and more, it appears that this will be a season where Seattle will attempt to break free of their adolescence. So much potential, so much drama, such little predictability. Everything they want is still within their reach. The quality of the individuals is just as strong now as it was before the season started. The dedication to improvement and greatness is still there. This team will be great. Their opportunities to prove that this season, though, are nearly gone.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

TUNE IN: Hawk Blogger Broadcast Seahawks vs Lions

About 400 of you seem to be willing to listen to me broadcast Seahawks games. That's about 400 more than I expected. My observations are much less filtered, and far more R-rated, during the broadcast versus my blog.

WHERE: Go HERE and click the button next to the Seahawks vs. Lions game


WHY? Do you really want to listen to more nonsensical and obnoxious national commentary? Get an informed opinion about what you are seeing, and a chance to interact with the broadcaster.

HOW: My voice will be broadcast through your internet-connected device. You should expect some delay in my call relative to the game since it has to travel all over the place, and even TV feeds are not timed exactly in every location. There are markers that let you pause your TV, and sync up with my broadcast. For example, I will mark "Kickoff." You can pause your TV at the kickoff, and then click PLAY when my broadcast catches up. It should be no more than 20-30 seconds.

Be aware, I will absolutely be swearing if I feel like it.

You can use this Twitter hashtag to talk to get my attention during the broadcast:  #HBTV

Let me know what you think!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

First Reactions: Hawks Beat Lions 32-20

Being a Lions fan has to be among the worst things a sports fan can be. The Seahawks started a game about as bad as you can start (for the second straight home game), and yet I turned to my buddy with confidence as we went down 17-0 and said, "You know we're still going to win this game, right?" And that wasn't arrogance as a Hawks fan. It was just awareness of what the Lions are.

I really feel for those folks. Hopeless.

Quick hitters:

- David Hawthorne. Three starts, three times leading the team in tackles and making at least two major impact plays in each game. I don't miss Lofa one bit.

- Julius Jones will get some praise for his long screen play, but for god sakes, why doesn't anyone see how much he's holding the team back? He offers almost nothing out there! I think he and Edge are a toss-up, and we just waived Edge. Forsett gets one carry for 14 yards. Unacceptable.

- Matt has never seemed comfortable with this offense. He might have had a record day with stats, but he continues to look hesitant and is missing much bigger gains by locking into a single receiver.

- Nice game by Josh Wilson

- Jon Ryan continues to be the best Seahawk this year.

GAME THREAD: Hawks vs. Lions

This game is like clash of the titans, only re-enacted by disabled, elderly little people. That said, there are a few things I am looking forward to:

- David Hawthorne further proving that Lofa has been loafing the past two seasons, and that a talented, hungry middle linebacker can make plays behind this defensive line

- Sean Locklear? Could it be? I'd really like to start evaluating how much of this o-line will need to be blown up and rebuilt next year.

- Forsett and/or Rankin getting some carries with Edge out of town

- Housh and Matt shutting everybody up

- A little run for Deon Butler?

- Aaron Curry tends to be a beast at home, especially against shitty teams.

FEARLESS PREDICTION: Nick Reed will have a memorable play today

All the media outlets have chalked this game up as a gimme victory. What people fail to realize is that the Hawks are not good enough to have any certain wins. The Lions have given a number of teams more fight than they expected. I think it's fair to expect a Hawks victory, but unwise to count on one.