Welcome back, ‘Hawks.

Seattle Seahawks – 42
Arizona Cardinals – 21

You know, for all of the razzing that I (among many others) have given this team over the years, one very pertinent statistic has been lost in the shuffle.

With their clinching of the NFC West as a result of this win, the Seattle Seahawks are one of only two teams in the NFL that have made the playoffs each of the last five seasons. (The other team to do so is the New England Patriots.) In addition, they’ve won the division title for four straight years, which once again an accomplishment that only the Pats (who’ve won five straight) can top. Over the past four years, the ‘Hawks have had to fend off the title against each of the other three teams in the division, who’ve each finished second at least once.

So despite the complaints the team may get of a perceived lack of heart, a tendency to play down to the level of their opposition, the spotty reputation of the receiving corps, or the belief that the team has already seen their window of opportunity close after the devastating loss in Super Bowl XL, it should also be said that the Seahawks have emerged as one of the most consistent teams in the NFL. They don’t get the press that the Pats do, for whatever reason you choose. But while other teams may get all the headlines, the ‘Hawks hum steadily along, locking up playoff berths each year as if it was a matter of course. True, three of the past five years they’ve finished with a record of 9-7 – just enough to get them in the door – but as the last two years have demonstrated, they’ve gone from a group bewildered players who are heavy on bravado but light on skill (“We’re gonna take the ball, and we’re gonna score!”) to a veteran crew who’ve been there before and know what to expect of the postseason.

Three more games left, all of them winnable. A 12-4 season might be asking much, but a first-round bye isn’t out of the question, and if the naysayers are to be taken seriously, this team still has a lot to prove.

After the team’s lackluster start, they’re settling into a groove. And I’m heartily enjoying it.

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4 thoughts on “Welcome back, ‘Hawks.

  1. usasatsui

    Tim, I hate to burst your bubble, but the Seahawks play in the worst division in football. It’s not shocking that when you put an above average team in with three bad ones, the above average one wins 5 times in a row. In any other division, the Seahawks are in the middle of a wild card hunt. That’s why they don’t get much press. They’re solid, and did have one very good year (which they really should have got more credit for), but a large part of their winning record is that they get to play San Francisco, St. Louis, and Arizona twice a year.

    In any event, I’d say they make the second round at least in the playoffs, but I don’t see them wrestling a first-round bye away from Green Bay or Dallas. Then again, I’m in 4th place in the football picks, so what do I know?

    Reply
  2. tleberle

    Tim, I hate to burst your bubble, but the Seahawks play in the worst division in football.Really? Do you hate to?

    Seriously, what good does tearing down the accomplishments of another team do? Cover up an inferiority complex of your own? The Seahawks play the hand they’re dealt, and that happens to be of a big fish in a small pond. Would I pick an almost assured division win over having to slug it out in a different division? Of course I would. And you would too. You’d be insane not to.

    The Seahawks are already assured of a home game on the fifth of January, and that suits me fine. I’d rather that the Seahawks stay out of the limelight, myself, quietly racking up win after win, climbing the standings. No one sees the invisible man coming.

    Reply
  3. usasatsui

    He was hyping up the team to a level better than they were. I told him they weren’t that good (and for the record, when he’s trashing them, they’re not that bad either). He wanted to know why the Seahawks aren’t the darlings of the national media, and why they’re not getting attention for topping their division. I told him why. They’re like the Braves of the 90s: They’re very good, but not great, and winning their division isn’t noticed because they’re expected to. There just isn’t much competition for them.

    Am I blaming them for it? No. You’re absolutely right, if you get yourself a cupcake schedule, ride it as long as you can. But face reality. They can’t dodge the good teams in the playoffs, and I just don’t think they’re good enough to beat them.

    Reply
  4. loogaroo

    He wanted to know why the Seahawks aren’t the darlings of the national media, and why they’re not getting attention for topping their division.

    I wasn’t asking why the Seahawks don’t get attention – I was merely pointing out the fact that they don’t.

    And while you say that the Seahawks are forced to play against tougher opposition in the playoffs, that’s precisely why I brought the element of them making the postseason for five straight years, more than any other team in the conference. Our likely first-round opponent is going to be a team that’s made the postseason for the first time in a long while – Minnesota, Detroit, or Arizona. Having the edge in experience, while playing a home game at one of the best homefields in the league, usually translates to a win.

    (And for what it’s worth, I think we could go into Dallas and beat the Cowboys. Not so much the Packers, though.)

    Reply

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