March 1, 2009

Ranking the Squads: 8-8 and not that great...

As usual, you can find the previous installments of the Ranking the Squads project here...

19. 1995
Record: 8-8
Offensive Rank: 10th out of 30 teams
Defensive Rank: 23rd out of 30
Turnover Ratio Rank: 25th out of 30
Team MVP: Chris Warren
High Point: Seahawks 31, Broncos 27
Low Point: Jets 16, Seahawks 10

'95 was the classic "Seahawks Will be Great Next Year!" tease: Start out like crap, then start playing like the goddamn '84 Niners once eliminated from playoff contention. A pathetic 2-6 start became a 6-2 second-half rally, highlighted by that insane comeback win at Mile High Stadium in December. I should have been diligently studying for finals that Sunday, but instead I watched the Hawks smack around Mr. Ed and erase a 20-0 deficit to get a rare win in Denver. I have no idea how I did on my finals that quarter, but I remember every detail of that game...

18. 1997
Record: 8-8
Offensive Rank: 9th out of 30 teams
Defensive Rank: 22nd out of 30
Turnover Ratio Rank: 19th out of 30
Team MVP: Warren Moon
High Point: Seahawks 45, Raiders 34
Low Point: Jets 41, Seahawks 3

The '97s have a special place in my heart, because this was my first year as a season ticket holder. Those above a certain age may remember that new owner Paul Allen made a huge swath of the Kingdome's 300 level seats $10 for the 1997 season. $200 for a pair of season tickets? Even my broke grad school ass could swing that...

Unfortunately, my first game as a season ticket holder was that 41-3 beating Seattle absorbed from the NYJ. As I said to my buddy Ed at the time: "What a weekend... Princess Di gets killed, and so do the Seahawks!"

The season improved slowly after that, mainly thanks to a late-career Pro Bowl effort from back-up QB Warren Moon (yup.. John Friez was supposed to be our starting QB that season). That shootout win over Oakland is still one of the most entertaining games I've ever been to. That was the day Darryl Williams laid out Rickey Dudley with one of the most brutal hits EVAR (start of clip below):

17. 1985
Record: 8-8
Offensive Rank: 13th out of 28 teams
Defensive Rank: 8th out 28
Turnover Ratio Rank: 10th out of 28
Team MVP: Steve Largent
High Point: Seahawks 49, Chargers 35
Low Point: Chiefs 28, Seahawks 7

The '84s went 12-4 without Curt Warner, so with his return for the 1985 campaign expectations were sky-high. We were even picked to win the Super Bowl by.. Playboy Magazine? Yup.

This instead was the maddening "win 2, lose 2" season for the Hawks, and in a tough AFC where the 11-5 Broncos missed the postseason, we were out of playoff contention by Thanksgiving. On paper this was a strong team, but they had a knack for dropping heartbreakers (back-to-back road losses to the Broncos and Jets in October spring to mind) and losing to teams they should have walloped.

Way to waste Steve Largent's best season, '85s.

16. 1998
Record: 8-8
Offensive Rank: 10th out of 30 teams
Defensive Rank: 10th out of 30
Turnover Ratio Rank: 7th out of 30
Team MVP: Chad Brown
High Point: Seahawks 38, Eagles 0
Low Point: Jets 32, Seahawks 31

Yeah, this was the year of Vinny Testaverde's Phantom Touchdown (sounds like the name of some shitty prog-rock band)... A call so bad that it got the NFL to bring back instant replay for the 1999 season, but still kept the Hawks out of the playoffs. I was still in Bellingham at the time, and I went so insane with rage that my roommate and his girlfriend had to flee the apartment. In my ensuing hulking-out, I broke the poor guy's laundry hamper.. It was worth having to buy him a new one to vent that rage, though.

The Jets seem to take special pride in tormenting us, huh? Maybe that's why that win at Qwest last December was so spectacularly satisfying..

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Your '98 team certainly was robbed in that Jets game, but how does a team that finishes in the Top 10 in the league in offense, defense, and turnover differential not go at least 11-5 to begin with? No way your boys should have ever been in a position to get bumped from the playoffs by that call.