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Enemy Reaction: “The disrespect has been well noted” edition

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NFL: San Francisco 49ers at Seattle Seahawks Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

The Seattle Seahawks finished the 2018 NFL regular season with a mark of 10-6 and a wild card berth, with a playoff game at the Dallas Cowboys coming up this Saturday night.

As promised, I’ve given Arizona Cardinals fans a break from Enemy Reaction because, well, they aren’t a large fanbase and a 3-13 year tends to make doing these screenshots a little bit difficult. Hell, some of them might have been rooting for a Seahawks win just to get that #1 pick confirmed.

In lieu of Enemy Reaction: Arizona Cardinals, I’ve got something better in mind for you this week. Was it reasonable prior to the start of the season to predict the Seahawks would miss the playoffs? I’d think so. I had them at 8-8 before Week 1, which would’ve only put them a game out of a wild card spot this year.

For the “experts” who predicted doom and gloom and a bad season for Seattle, and then stuck with it even through the slow start to the regular season? I’ve kept those receipts, the disrespect has been well noted, and we’re here to have fun with them to get 2019 started. Come along for the ride!

(Thanks to Kenneth Arthur for compiling several of these links)


Preseason Takes

Nate Davis, USA TODAY

Seattle Seahawks (4-12): Ex-LOBer Richard Sherman nailed it when he said, “They’ve lost their way.” Russell Wilson could generate 100% of the offense this year, and it won’t be enough for a roster that’s crumbling around him.

[...]

Super Bowl LIII

Falcons def. Chargers

Jonathan Jones, Sports Illustrated

Seattle Seahawks: 7–9

The Seahawks as we knew them are no more, and we should all mourn that. As great as Russell Wilson is, there’s simply not enough around him, and Seattle is headed to its first losing record with Wilson under center. Once built with smart draft picks, the Seahawks had to go out in free agency this offseason to get parts such as Jaron Brown, Brandon Marshall and Maurice Alexander. The Legion of Boom is gone, taking the identity of this team and its juice with it.

Pete Prisco, CBS Sports (who has since finally admitted Russell Wilson is great)

NFC West

Rams: 11-5

49ers: 7-9

Cardinals: 7-9

Seahawks: 5-11

[...]

Super Bowl: Packers 27, Jaguars 20

Michael Wilbon, ESPN: “They’re going to wind up being a 4-12 team”

Cian Fahey, Interceptable Podcast host

Benjamin Allbright, NFL Insider

Althon Sports

The Seahawks lost far too much talent in one offseason to improve their situation. They conducted a major housecleaning that proved disconcerting to both fans and returning players. A glory era ended. “Every year it’s not fun when guys leave, but this hurt pretty bad,” Wright says. Realistically, a team revamp as extensive as this is going to take a few seasons -- and more moves -- to take hold. Expect Seattle to hover around .500 and be home during the playoffs again.

Prediction: 3rd in NFC West

Adam Rank, NFL.com

THE STREAK: The Seattle Seahawks have recorded six straight winning seasons.

Will it live? No.

Why? This team is different. Instead of Russell Wilson and a supporting cast of who’s who in the NFL, it’s now a cast of ... Who is that? The team got rid of big personalities like Marshawn Lynch, Richard Sherman and Michael Bennett. It’s like when I saw Guns N’ Roses at the Hard Rock in the 2000s. Axl was there, but it wasn’t the same without Slash and Duff. Not that Rashaad Penny couldn’t be the Seahawks’ version of Buckethead or Robin Finck, but it’s just a different feel. So maybe this team surprises and makes it to paradise city. But it’s so easy? Not so much.

Nicholas McGee, Sporting News

Coach on the hot seat:

Pete Carroll, Seahawks

For all the Seahawks’ claims to the contrary, recent developments in Seattle smack of a rebuild. Their desire not to embrace a full tear-down is understandable given that the Seahawks have one of the best quarterbacks in the league in Wilson.

However, the roster is talent-poor on both sides of the ball, and should Seattle suffer a downturn that results in a first losing season since 2011, the Seahawks may finally decide to start fresh and end Carroll’s illustrious spell at the helm.

[...]

Predicted finish:

Rams: 11-5

49ers: 10-6

Seahawks: 6-10

Cardinals: 5-11

Bob Rose, Canal Street Chronicles (picked Seattle to finish last in the NFC West)

Quarterback play is the least of the Seahawks’ worries. Russell Wilson is as good as they come, but an intimidating roster that made strong Super Bowl runs from 2012-16 has been gutted, and not yet adequately replaced. As questionable as the Rams locker room chemistry might be, they could still run away from the division early, and are a legitimate Super Bowl threat to start the year. Arizona is my NFC darkhorse to make a playoff push, and could compete strongly with Green Bay and Carolina for the second wild card spot.

Chase Hammes, Steel City Underground

3.) Seattle Seahawks - 6-10 (3-3 div. record)

The Seahawks had a rehaul this offseason with Kam Chancellor retiring, and Michael Bennett getting traded to the Eagles. The Seahawks added first round running back Rashaad Penny to take the pressure off of Russell Wilson, but Chris Carson looks like the starter and a potential break out candidate. The recievers aside from Doug Baldwin aren’t very good, and the loss of Jimmy Graham will sting a bit. The offensive line is one of the worst in the league, and they will need to improve a lot if they team wants to win. The defensive line is rough besides Frank Clark, but they have a great linebacker duo in Bobby Wagner and K.J Wright. The secondary is very much a work in progress besides Shaquill Griffin and Earl Thomas III, and they don’t have the pass rush to take the pressure off of the corners. The Seahawks are definitely in a rebuilding season, and will need some young players to show what they have for the future.

NFL Network “expert” predictions in mid-August

Robert Klemko, Sports Illustrated (yes, he wrote that article, and deleted the tweet below)

Bonus In-Season Takes!

Shannon Sharpe, Fox Sports (after Bears loss): “There’s no way they’re winning eight games”

Mark Maske, Washington Post (after Bears loss): The glory says seem so long ago

The break is complete. The transformation is striking. The Seattle Seahawks bear no resemblance to the powerful, charismatic, star-laden team that made five straight playoff appearances, won a Super Bowl and came one ill-fated play on the 1-yard line from winning another.

The Seahawks are rebuilding. There’s no way around that, two games — and two losses — into their season of transition.

[...]

The season is not exactly a lost cause. Not yet, at least.

But the franchise’s first losing season since 2011 appears possible.

Heath Cummings, CBS Sports (after second Rams loss)

Cian Fahey (after Seahawks beat Vikings)

Cian Fahey... whatever the hell this is, literally January 1st, 2019

...and last and also least.

Mookie Alexander, Field Gulls editor (during first Arizona Cardinals game)


And that concludes this special edition of Enemy Reaction! I hope that I’ve got at least one more regular edition to churn out before the season ends, which would mean reveling in the misery of Dallas Cowboys fans.

Thanks for reading and go ‘Hawks!