October 8, 2012
Seahawks 16, Panthers 12
Somewhere there's a J.J. Abrams-esque alternate universe where the Seahawks defense couldn't keep the Carolina Panthers out of the end zone in the 4th quarter yesterday. Seattle lost 17-16 and that version of the Twelve Army is tearing itself apart- half demanding fealty to Russell Wilson, half demanding that Matt Flynn start against New England in a desperate effort to save a season spinning out of control. The national media bobbleheads fawn over Cam Newton's ability to "get it done" in the 4th quarter and keep the Panthers' season alive. Pete Carroll is on the "hot seat," and his entire rebuilding project in Seattle falls under withering criticism- "Well, you know they're a bad call from a replacement ref away from being 1-4. Pete Carroll is finding out the NFL isn't the Pac-10!" Today, those goateed alt-Twelves are living in a World of Shit.
Here in our reality, Carolina's season absorbed a death blow yesterday. Here in our reality, The Best Defense in The NFL WILLED the Seahawks to victory, highlighted by a goal-line stand that will become folklore- A tale spoken of as part of the Legend of 2012. With their season on the line in a very tangible sense, The Best Defense in The NFL stopped football's best red zone offense on FOUR tries inside the 5-yard-line. Before that, a superlative individual play by Brandon Browner set up Seattle's lone offensive touchdown. After that, rookie stud Bruce Irvin sealed the victory with a strip-sack of Newton (who was VASTLY outplayed by Russell Wilson). All day the Seattle defense pummeled the Panthers. Make no mistake- Many Carolina offensive players woke up pissing blood this morning. Future Hall-of-Famer Steve Smith tussled with Richard Sherman all day and lost- his pint-sized bravado was no match for a supremely talented NERD.
Through the first five games, this is the best defense the Seattle Seahawks have ever put on the field. Right now they are #1 in total defense, #3 in rushing defense, #5 in passing defense, #5 in sacks, and #3 in scoring defense in the NFL. If they keep this up, they'll eclipse the vaunted 1984 Seahawks defense. The ONLY category where we could stand to see marked improvement is in terms of takeaways- but yesterday the Seattle D did notch two key game-changing takeaways. I've said it before, but this is a Championship Defense- possibly on the level of the 2000 Ravens or 2002 Buccaneers. The big question is: Can Russell Wilson play Trent Dilfer/Brad Johnson and lead us on a deep playoff run?
Obviously, I'm a Wilson skeptic- One atrocious mistake led to a Carolina pick-6 and nearly cost us the game- but he showed real progress yesterday, and it's impossible to rationally argue that he should be benched in favor of Matt Flynn at this point. He radically improved his performance on 3rd down, and flashed the skill set that made Pete Carroll and millions of Twelves swoon back in August. Could he take a step backwards and force Matt Flynn onto the field at some later point this season? Sure- But I think there's a greater chance that he will continue to improve, and be ready to help us win playoff games by January. I'm VERY happy to have almost everything I wrote last week immediately look hysterical and stupid. Good job, kid- Keep it up.
Other random notes? Marshawn Lynch didn't have a monster game in terms of stats, but he ground out yards when we needed them against a defense STACKED up to stop him. Golden Tate is a villain everywhere outside Seattle, but his toughness is quickly making him a fan favorite among Twelves- For the 2nd time in three weeks, he scored the winning TD for the Hawks. Special Teams got back on track, and the decision to take the intentional safety in the waning minutes was a bold, savvy decision by Pete Carroll.
The New Fucking England Goddamn Patriots are coming to Seahawks Stadium next week- It's an incredible challenge for these young Hawks, but one I think they are up to. We've reached a point where we don't just have to worry about Tom Brady- Dude has to worry about us, too. We'll give Belichick and his minions all they can handle. These are great times to be a Seahawks fan- Rejoice, Twelves!
What do you think, sirs?