In years past, it felt like the Seattle Seahawks could do just about anything; draft a Hall of Fame QB and future Super Bowl champion in the third round? Sure. Assemble a legendary defense that is comprised of one first round selection and a bunch of mid/late-round players? Done. Dismantle every offense they face with a smothering defense while picking apart the opposing team with a conservative yet explosive offense? You betcha. And this could go on.
But these Seahawks are sitting at 2-3, which is hardly an enviable position to be in. In previous seasons, though, I would have shrugged my shoulders, licked my wounds, and gone to work, certain that they would recover. They’ve been here before.
The Seahawks have a losing record through 5 games for the 3rd time with Russell Wilson as their starting QB. They also started 2-3 in 2018 and 2015 (made playoffs in both seasons).— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) October 8, 2021
Wilson left Thursday's game with a sprained finger. He hasn't missed a game in his NFL career. pic.twitter.com/fTNfbxmt1j
But this just feels different.
Pete Carroll and John Schneider have made careers out of surprising everyone and keeping things interesting. And ultimately, this is all about entertainment anyway. But what happens when the show stops being entertaining? What happens when the cast ages poorly and stops captivating fans the way they used to? At what precise moment did the Seattle Seahawks organization jump the proverbial shark?
I don’t have answers to those questions, but I can tell you this much: what once looked like a hill to climb now looks like a mountain to ascend, and Pete Carroll has traded away all of our climbing gear for a poorly utilized yet highly paid Safety and continued to let an incompetent leader call plays for a defense that is unrecognizable. And fans are taking notice.
What struck me the most following this loss was the numbness. I just laughed and said to my partner following the game, “honestly, I don’t even really care that much. I expected them to drop this one.” And that is something I have never said before during this era of Seattle football and actually meant it. And, at first, I thought maybe that is just because I have articles to write and data to analyze; being busy is good. But then I saw what other fans, analysts, and Seahawks players (!!!) on twitter were saying following the loss. And if you appreciate either commiserating or schadenfreude, then read on because this is for you.
“We let this game slip away.”— Dugar, Michael-Shawn (@MikeDugar) October 8, 2021
“It definitely stings right now.”
“We got shit we need to fix and everybody knows that.”
This is life for the 2-3 #Seahawks, who after a disappointing loss Thursday night just can’t get right — on either side of the ball. https://t.co/XtyK7r4hbS pic.twitter.com/5Nl4TQ5XOm
Side note on this one: Jamal Adams, you are supposed to be a superstar. You are being paid like one, and the world knows you can play like one. The defense features a number of first and second round picks (Adams, Wagner, Brooks, Taylor, and so on). This team doesn’t need “more dogs,” they need “a new coach” and “players who can cover.”
Whatever the Seahawks are doing with Jamal Adams since they traded 2 first-round picks for him, it's not working. His performance is down across the board considerably since leaving the #Jets. They need to figure this out and figure it out quickly. #TakeFlight pic.twitter.com/2Z042IOc4E— David Wyatt-Hupton (@DWyattHupton) October 8, 2021
Worst part about all of this is I have 0 faith in Seattle’s ownership group to rectify the situation at hand— Evan Hill (@EvanHillHB) October 8, 2021
Sign of the times: slept like baby after another annoying, weird, Seahawks loss. Granted it was following two long days on the road at work. Years ago, I was truly unable to sleep after a L like that, but I guess priorities shift as you get older, have kids. Either way, GO HAWKS!— Isaac Kimes (@IsaacKimes) October 8, 2021
That game probably could've gone either way, but frankly I'm not that broken up over it. The Seahawks are just a mediocre team that's in need of a regime change. GM, coach. Maybe even the QB at some point.— Jeff Simmons (@realjeffsimmons) October 8, 2021
Jamal Adams doesn't know what to do— Tyler once again is fire KNJ (@TylerjAlsin) October 8, 2021
Jordyn Brooks doesn't know what to do
I seen BOBBY WAGNER get told where to go by Diggs
how is either coach still running the defense right now dear lord pick up a phone and get some help https://t.co/rfAYYEZjok
In the last four games, the Seahawks have allowed:— SB Nation (@SBNation) October 8, 2021
- 532 yds
- 453 yds
- 457 yds
- 476 yds
Seahawks’ QB Russell Wilson never has missed an NFL start, something that could be in jeopardy with his finger injury.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) October 8, 2021
“Quarterback Controversy in Seattle” and the double punt
When the Seahawks have Russell Wilson starting at QB and there is a palpable excitement that his backup gets a chance to come in and show off his stuff, something is wrong. Nobody really believes that Smith is challenging Wilson for the starting position. But for the first time that I can remember in the last ten years, we got to see a glimpse of what life without Russell Wilson might look like, and it looked... ok. Granted, backup QBs coming off the bench (especially veterans) in the modern NFL often are capable of making plays and leading drives, even those who have been maligned for much of their careers (see: Chad Henne in the playoffs circa early-2021, or Nick Foles in the playoffs/Super Bowl). But, again, this felt different. When Chad Henne came in for Mahomes, fans were just relieved that he didn’t blow it. Nick Foles took over for a player who is no longer with the team that drafted him second overall. When Geno Smith came off the bench and led a 98-yard scoring drive, a lurking fear below started to bubble up to the surface; what if Russ is actually part of the problem? What if Russ is no longer the unstoppable comeback machine that he once was? Again, Russell Wilson is a hall-of-famer, and he undoubtedly gives Seattle the best chance to win, week-in and week-out. But he is human, and it is starting to show more and more every game. Geno Smith is neither better than — nor a replacement for — the injured signal caller. But we got to witness something that we haven’t seen since the 2011 season: somebody other than number 3 taking meaningful in-game snaps under center for an extended period of time.
Okay so we know Geno Smith is the Seahawks new starting QB, so the question is now where Russ is getting traded to on Monday. Miami?— Mike Clay (@MikeClayNFL) October 8, 2021
a quick breakdown of the double punt in the Seahawks Rams game pic.twitter.com/YEJ1n7SYgT— Mike Camerlengo (@MCamerlengo) October 8, 2021
When you have a team like the Seahawks, and the most positive parts you can highlight from the game are the hilarious and incredible “double punt” (credit where credit is due, Dickson is amazing) and the clutch quarterback play of Geno Smith, then you know something is critically wrong with this team.
I try my best to be optimistic. In a world where we have so many truly bad and negative things going on constantly, having an escape such as football is wonderful reprieve for the weary. So ultimately, a game is a game is a game is a game. But this game felt more like a root canal; it was painful, and then aggravating. And then eventually it just stopped hurting. Because this team is “who we thought they were.” After years of proving the doubters wrong, it is starting to look like this once leaky but endearing ship is too full of holes to keep sailing, and there is nothing left but for the wily, gum-chewing captain to go down with the boat.