Let’s be real: After today, the Seahawks need more than a Christmas miracle to win the division – and divine intervention to somehow still reach the playoffs.
Today was flat-out ugly. And given the circumstances, pretty inexcusable.
But I am here to put this season in perspective, without jumping off the deep end like a ton of keyboard warriors on social media have already done. First off, today’s game was by far the worst of the season. It was a one-off on the scoreboard, magnified by the stakes, which was pretty glaring.
We have to remember that the other five losses have been by single digits, four of them winnable on the final drive – from the Redskins game to the Falcons game to the Jaguars game last week – all with one of the best quarterbacks in the game. That simply comes down to execution – or lack thereof. So is starting games slowly, failing to find an early rhythm.
So you can call today’s blowout the norm, but that’s a false narrative. Yes, it exposed glaring problems the Hawks had all year. Yes, it hurts. Yes, it was atrocious to watch – and while I understand the knee-jerk reaction after a loss like this to blow the whole thing up, that’s really just silly.
Some changes need to be made – and hopefully, they will after the season. But not when it comes to the top. Give Pete Carroll and John Schneider the authority to look in the mirror and make changes they deem necessary. They’ve earned the right to self-reflect and chart the path ahead.
Because, as unlikely as it might seem tonight, the Seahawks still have a chance to finish 10-6 this season. That would be their sixth straight season with double-digit wins – and the same number of wins they finished with the past two years. In fact, only five teams in the last 25 years have missed the playoffs with a ten-win regular season. The Hawks could be the sixth.
So don’t stand here and tell me the Hawks are on some major downward spiral. Today was a wake-up call, sure. They were exposed for what they were – an aging team that made too many mistakes, racked up too many penalties, didn’t execute and had too many key injuries. But cleaning house would risk a downturn like what we saw back in 2008 and 2009.
That being said, it’s still fair to consider their first championship window officially closed. With Kam Chancellor and Cliff Avril’s future in doubt, and Richard Sherman and Earl Thomas under contract for one more year, trying to reinvent four years ago isn’t going to happen without competent personnel – and personnel that can stay healthy. THAT’S the challenge for John Schneider and Pete Carroll moving forward.
Finally, I know there will be fans who will blame this year on outside distractions – from the national anthem controversy, to player activism and the Michael Bennett situation with police officers in Las Vegas. To me, that’s a bunch of bologna. Execution and injuries played a much bigger role.
We all have to remember: This game is filled with hypotheticals. And the legacy this team has left the past four years leaves a lot of memorable moments. But unfortunately, just as many “what if’s.”