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On the Bright Side… Thoughts Through Week 6 About the Seahawks

Thursday, October 22, 2015


‘Seachickens,’ ‘S**thawks,’ ‘Bandwagon Birds,’ I’ve heard them all. Those terms haven’t bothered me too much over the past few years because Seattle’s performances spoke for themselves. To say the least, this season is killing me softly, and not just because the honeymoon is clearly over because Richard Sherman won’t take the garbage out even though Kam Chancellor has asked him to do it five times and cooked a delicious meatloaf and Russell Wilson is upstairs praying because he thinks the LOB might be getting a divorce. Part of why these inexplicable fourth-quarter losses are especially hard to digest is because these players, the formerly overlooked, bright-eyed, positive, harmonious football family that Russell Wilson and company have evolved themselves into are finally getting paid the money they deserve yet don’t seem to be acting like it past 45 minutes of play. 

Since there’s about 1,001 editorials, comments and segments about this incredulous meltdown, I see no need to wedge my own elaborations into this overcrowded conversation (which, by the way, can be reduced to the fact a team can’t be  great all the time and it looks like opponents  have studied Seattle’s game  footage much closer than the past couple of years. And personally  I would give back Jimmy Graham for Max Unger in a heartbeat). So, I bring to you the positive vibrations still pulsating  on an otherwise lifeless waterfowl corpse (a little fun visual pre-Halloween):

Earl Thomas III is still Earl Thomas III.

Earl is the most perfectly odd player you could ever want on your team. He reminds us all that this is still a game (yes I’m aware football is religion in this country but there’s also, you know, actual constant evils that exist in this world while you salt your post-game craft beer with your tears). Earl thinks a curse has been cast upon the team (code for Ciara?!) and that’s just the kind of kooky post-game commentary you sometimes need when everybody else has the same meaningless self-deprecating assessment to offer. Bright side within this bright side: a wild Earl roared (literally) when set free despite the loss to the Panthers – he played fantastically throughout the game after having a quiet start to the season. “This is great. It’s a part of the story. We’re going to outlast this.” Preach, Earl. 

Dan Quinn is Coaching the Heck out of those other Birds

How is this a good thing, you ask? Well, Quinn was obviously so amazing at his job that his departure left a big gap in Seattle’s defensive coaching. I’m not excusing the LOB of their responsibilities (c’mon guys, this isn’t your first rodeo), but at least we can attribute some of this fiasco to  missing a certain leadership quality with Quinn gone. Just because you have a Ferrari doesn’t mean you know how to drive it, if you catch my drift. With such exceptional skills, watching Quinn take a virtually intact team from last season’s giant losers to one of the best in the NFL doth warm my heart. 

Marshawn Lynch

Fred Jackson Crashed his Car Not Racing Marshawn Lynch and didn’t Hurt Anybody

Well, this was an unexpected addition to the list, but considering it happened in real-time while writing I just had to add it. I heard from friends who are Bills fans he was a liability, so let’s just be glad nobody got hurt. Also, right after Derrick Coleman gets reinstated following a scary crash on his way home from the practice facility? C’mon, man. Don’t make Percy Harvin look good. 

Seattle is Playing San Francisco this Week

Seattle appears to be following in the footsteps of San Francisco in many ways: more tech startups (and tech bros!) than Starbucks, rent hikes through the roof and now a mediocre football season after consecutive near-championship runs. But you know what? At least Seattle didn’t castaway its pleated khaki-wearing head coach in favor of someone you never heard of and build the biggest embarrassment of a stadium in a suburb of the city where more people know how to code a computer program than understand the rules of  football. Seattle also didn’t lose over half its team, although I’m not sure if that makes us better or worse now that both teams are 2-4. Well, I digress. The point is, Colin Kaepernick notoriously melts to pieces when he plays Seattle and I’m fairly certain one of their best players came from a rugby team. 

Tyler Lockett and Thomas Rawls are Two of the Best Rookies in the League

I no longer fear the days of Marshawn Lynch living out the rest of his career making Frappuccinos and not racing fellow former Buffalo Bill Fred Jackson so long as Rawls is around to run over defenses like he did against the Cincinnati Bengals. This kid is seriously talented, and the benefit of having a double dose of rookies like that with he and Lockett is that opponents don’t know what to expect when they’re expecting Beast Mode and a heavy pass game to Jimmy Graham. Don’t get me wrong, I love Lynch more than anybody and I do think that Graham adds something to the team it never had...if he’d just stop acting like making big plays are more important than a team win (Sir, you fly a plane to practice, no one is judging your capabilities here so let’s just learn to be a team player, okay?). So keep on giving the ball to  Lockett and give Rawls more opportunities if Lynch isn’t 100% because they’ve turned future talent into current standout status.   

That’s all the time I have this week. So my fair-weather fans who won’t be reading this, I bid you adieu until the next playoff appearance. Until then, those of us who weathered all those three-win seasons, Ken Behring’s polyester sweaters, Jon Kitna, institutional green Kingdome turf, Dad cussing at the TV, and games where Macklemore wasn’t either on the sideline or the halftime entertainment (though I think he’s one of us) will  still be tuning in regardless because we know how to Sea the glass half-full. See what I did there? Go Hawks! 

GoLocalPDX partner Oregon Sports News: Since 2011, Oregon Sports News has provided entertaining, hard-hitting local sports news & commentary every weekday. To read more from this author, check out Oregon Sports News by clicking here.


Related Slideshow: 12 of the Greatest Sports Movies of All Time

Hank Stern ranks his top twelve favorite sports films. 

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#12 Rollerball

Some of the non-athletic scenes in this dystopian classic show their age, but Rollerball is a strangely prescient film that anticipated both the corporatization of sport and fans’ limitless taste for violence. Bonus points for the ominous intro music.

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#11 A League of Their Own

A comedy that looks back to the antithesis of corporate sport – a women’s baseball league during World War II with many memorable lines to choose from (e.g.,”There’s no crying in baseball.”)

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#10 Remember The Titans

Yes, filmmakers took liberties with some of the facts dealing with the integration of a high school football team in Virginia. But there’s a reason football teams often screen this film on the eve of big games. It’s a damn inspirational tale.

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#9 The Natural

This film has grown on me over time. Originally, it seemed slow and schmaltzy. Now, it seems well-paced and charming. Then and now, the re-created scenes of pre-World War II ballparks arrive like perfectly preserved postcards from the past.  

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#8 The Longest Yard

Not the remake with Adam Sandler and Chris Rock. But the hilarious original with Burt Reynolds and Eddie Albert as a wonderfully villainous warden who pits the guards against the inmates in a grudge football game that includes former Green Bay linebacker Ray Nitschke and other ex-football players like Sonny Sixkiller and Joe Kapp, both stalwart Pac-8 quarterbacks long, long ago.  

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#7 Slap Shot

The Hanson brothers. Enough said.

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#6 Rocky

Often imitated, but never replicated. The definitive underdog boxing story featuring Sylvester Stallone before he became a self-caricature in multiple sequels. Impossible to hear the theme song without being motivated to get off the couch.

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#5 Seabiscuit

A fantastic book as well as a great movie. Like “The Natural,” Seabiscuit captures its Depression-era setting for modern-day viewers taken back to an era when horse racing actually meant something in America. 

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#4 Requiem for a Heavywei

A too often-forgotten film these days but a wonderful boxing drama that shows the sport’s underside with memorable  performances by Mickey Rooney, Jackie Gleason and Anthony Quinn.

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#3 Hoosiers

Want to know something about small-town America in the 1950s and about Indiana basketball? This hoops movie does all of that with a healthy dose of redemption throughout. 

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#2 Bull Durham

There’s a pretty good case to be made this movie played a huge part in the rebirth and re-marketing of minor league baseball. As written by former minor leaguer Ron Shelton, there are many great scenes to choose from but this one is a favorite. 

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#1 Raging Bull

A rags-to-riches-to-rags story of boxer Jake LaMotta meets the actor born to play him, Robert De Niro. Not a false moment in this black-and-white powerhouse.


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