I'm not going to talk about Shaun Alexander, because it's fair to say he didn't do enough to be mentioned. I am going to talk about the run game, because it's becoming pretty clear that Mike Holmgren has abandoned it.
The Hawks were badly exposed today. The defense played well against a very good offense. They did what they could, despite spending roughly five minutes off the field (commercial time outs). The special teams didn't excel, but you can't expect that every game. No, this game was all about the Seahawks' offense. Did you see it?
Lumbering, one dimensional and ultimately a hoax. The book is out on how to play the Seahawks, play pass every time. The Seahawks rushing attack has become an embarrassment. I'm not going to argue whether it has been Alexander or the run blocking, I think everyone knows what I think, but it's time that Holmgren at least considers the possibility of occasionally giving the ball to someone else. His loyalty to Shaun has become downright dogmatic, and again I'm not saying Alexander did much that impacted this game, but without any semblance of a rushing attack, this offense is lost.
This isn't revolutionary. This season the Bucs lost their star rusher and have since played better with a committee. Earnest Graham and Michael Pittman are no better than Leonard Weaver and Maurice Morris. This is no longer about whether Alexander is washed up, this is about Mike Holmgren being so stubborn, so unwilling to try giving carries to anyone else even after a game is all but lost, that it's jeopardizing possibly the Hawks' last chance of contention.
For the sake of the season: Free the Field!!
Update: I can't believe I find myself in the position of defending Shaun Alexander, but here goes. Alexander was not always soft or a crappy rusher or whatever. He was once pretty darn good. Never as good as the Hawks' line made him look, but in his youth he was an asset both as a rusher and a receiver. But we all age. Alexander is 30, and when you consider his carries and recent health, his football age is older. Even the greatest players of all time eventually decline. No one is arguing that if Alexander, Morris and Weaver were all in their prime, all had the same injury history, that Alexander wouldn't clearly be the best of the bunch. I am arguing the fact that Alexander simply isn't in his prime anymore and as such questions about his play now and in the future aren't panic or an attack, but reasonable and responsible analysis.
I don't know why Alexander continues to be entitled 85%+ of the carries. If Holmgren's hands are tied because of Alexander's status or contract or attitude; Or if he simply can't grasp that Alexander is no longer and never will again be the rusher that just two years ago was the greatest back Holmgren's ever coached. You don't want to accuse a complete stranger of diluted sentimentality, but like we all age, we all make mistakes.