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Seattle Seahawks - The Winter of Our Discontent

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

 

Thinking about the Seattle Seahawks’ rapid decline, I started wondering about the off-field factors that may be contributing to what we've seen.  Not two months ago, talk centered on a Super Bowl repeat by an elite, talented, and hungry team.  Now the media and the fans (and hopefully, the coaches) are scratching their heads about the scenarios that might result in a wild card—provided the Hawks can win more than a few of their remaining games. To come so tantalizingly close to victory so many times this season only to have it slip away should warrant some very serious soul-searching. On your behalf, Dear Seahawks, I've been thinking about what's different now, compared to one year ago.  Here’s my list of possibilities.  Discuss. 

    1.    The distraction of fame: How much of this slide is attributable to the star-making (and rainmaking) visibility that alighted on many of the Seahawks stars after appearing in back-to-back Super Bowls?  In particular, several high-profile players not only have lucrative NFL contracts, they also have a range number of amusing commercials and product endorsements. And while I appreciate the Russell Wilson-Macklemore mash-up, time spent on the set is time spent away from watching video, familiarizing yourself with the lineup and skillset of your next opponent, and hardwiring the upcoming game plan. So Russell Wilson's life looks very different now than it did in 2014. The same is true to varying degrees for Richard Sherman, Michael Bennett, and Marshawn Lynch (oh, and Marshawn’s mom—love her!)
 
    2.    Been there, done that syndrome: The perverse interpretation is that their success had bred a bit of complacency. I'm not trying to say that they've given up already. But I can't help but wonder if some of them have relaxed just a little bit, taking their foot off the gas pedal, now that the multiyear contracts are buttoned up.  Ordinarily, I try not to be cynical, but the pain of Sunday night’s loss is still fresh.  Roster moves are one possible solution, ahem.

    3.    The Austin Powers Effect:  Another place is to look is the coaching staff. I can't help but wonder…when Dan Quinn accepted the job with the Atlanta Falcons, did he take some of the defensive swagger with him along with the incredible stats he racked up? Has the Legion of Boom lost its mojo?  If so, what can they do to get it back? Kris Richard, you might want to reach out to Mini Me. I think he’s between gigs.

    4.    All of the above?  
An adage that has been espoused in the military and picked up in management consulting is the notion of getting something faster, better, and cheaper (but you have to pick two of the three).  In this case, we’re seeing the inverse.  Not only are the Seahawks not faster, and not better, they are definitely not cheaper. Is this the cost of success?

{image_2}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.

 

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