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What I saw at the Pro Bowl




Even Roger Goodell noticed that the players at the Pro Bowl in Hawaii were doing a bit better than going through the motions, which was a criticism of recent all-star games. With the commish paying attention, the increased intensity at the Pro Bowl this year might be attributable to players who don't want to lose the good deal of a trip to Hawaii and 25-50 grand for a few hours' play.

From what I saw, I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that the Seahawks' six players brought the Pete Carroll "Always Compete" mantra to the field, and hit and ran hard enough to drag most of the rest of the players out there along with them. If anything, the most fiery Seahawk on the field, the violent-running Marshawn Lynch, ran a little tentatively for what I've come to see of him, but even that, for him, was more physical and violent than the other backs. OL Max Unger and Russell Okung stoned their guys most of the game, which shouldn't be hard when you face half-hearted rushers.

But Leon Washington, Earl Thomas, and Russell Wilson? Intense! Washington looked like the Flash running around molasses-swamped defenders on every kick. Thomas was nodding and hopping and jumping after nearly every play.

But Wilson's appearance, especially, apparently wore off on the other players. Maybe the AFC side wanted to put the rookie in his place, because their pass rush sucked until Wilson came in. Everybody seemed to want to be the guy to bring down the 5-10 bundle of dy-no-mite. It took them a while to figure it out, not until DangeRuss dropped 3 touchdowns on the AFC squad.

These Seahawks play hard, all the time. It sure showed, even in a game where nobody is supposed to care. I don't know whether the Pro Bowl does survive this season, but seeing the Seahawks playing hard no matter what seems to continue to validate the method that Pete Carroll preaches every day in the locker room and on the field.

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