Extra Points: "It's Good to Have a Pulse"

"Okay, so it's great to be all excited about a big win, but we still can't lose sight of the big picture. We still have three tough games remaining and need to win at least 2 of them, if not all of them, to guarantee a trip to the playoffs."

Could it possibly be? Can our Seahawks be imitating Lazarus and be returning from the dead? It sure looked like it Sunday in Minnesota against a pretty good Vikings team that few people actually gave us a chance to beat. We could have rolled over when we went down 10 early. But no, we scratched and clawed our way back and stood toe to toe with the Vikings.

We proved for one week anyway that we still have a pulse.

We could have rolled over when we didn’t try to kick a 51 yard field goal choosing instead to punt the ball into the end zone which allowed the Vikings to quickly grab the momentum back. But no, one of our good young rookies, Niko Koutouvides busted through the line which caused the back to hesitate which helped cause the fumble which lead to the eventual final score.

We still had a pulse.

We could have rolled over when the Vikings were driving the ball right down our throats in the final 3 minutes to take a lead and probably win the game but no, our fantastic rookie Michael Boulware came out of nowhere and snagged an interception.

We still had a pulse.

We could have done what we normally do in a tight game with under 2 minutes left and desperately needing a first down to solidify a victory, and get ultra-conservative and just pound the ball up the middle for a yard but no, coach Holmgren actually made a gutsy call and Matt Hasselbeck put the ball right on the money to a streaking Darrell Jackson for a huge gain and much better field position.

We still had a pulse.

And lastly, we could have rolled over when Minnesota made their final drive with just seconds to play and only 25 yards away from victory but no, Antonio Cochran came up huge with a sack, (which wasn’t called) and Marcus Trufant deflected the final desperation pass to ensure a victory that few people gave any chance of having.

There’s that pulse thing again.

So what does all of this mean? Is everything all peachy keen again?

Personally, this victory gave me a jolt of hope and excitement for the last 3 games of the season. If we play with the kind of passion and determination that we did against the Vikings then we’ll be just fine. We can’t afford any slip-ups along the way so keeping this momentum is crucial to our playoff hopes.

Some “Extra Points” from the Vikings game:

Matt Hasselbeck seems to be back. The guy has played very well for the past two weeks and appears to have regained his confidence again. It couldn’t have come at a better time for our Seahawks. We need his leadership and ability if we’re going to reach the playoffs.

I think that Darrell Jackson deserves some special accolades for the game he played under such incredibly tough circumstances. To be that focused and determined with all that he and his family had just gone through says a lot about the man. He played with great courage and was instrumental in this victory.

Shaun Alexander continues to have a terrific season. He’s still running harder than he’s ever run before and is even fighting for extra yardage. He’s having a Pro Bowl season.

Thank God we drafted Michael Boulware. Everyone scoffed at the notion of making this college linebacker a safety in the NFL but he’s made the transition quite easily and has saved 3 games for us with interceptions (Minnesota, Miami, and Tampa Bay). He’s earned the right to be the starter and our defense played much better with him in there. In my biased opinion, he’s the Defensive Rookie of the Year.

Injuries continue to bite us. We’ve lost Grant Wistrom again. I do think however, that aside from his non-stop motor, we have guys who can just about replace his productivity. It’s a big loss, but I don’t think it’s catastrophic. We’ll see.

On a positive note, we are expected to get both Chad Brown and Tracy White back this upcoming week which will really help our defense. Having that kind of speed at the linebacker position can do wonders for us.

How about the jobs that Pork Chop Womack and Jerry Wunsch did for us Sunday. Both of these guys stepped up big time and filled in very nicely when we needed them the most. It’s great to have some solid depth for a change.

And lastly, kudos to Josh Brown who bounced back immediately after missing what would have been a team record 17th straight field goal and hitting 2 in a row after that. He showed a lot of mental toughness in getting the job done.

Okay, so it’s great to be all excited about a big win, but we still can’t lose sight of the big picture. We still have three tough games remaining and need to win at least 2 of them, if not all of them, to guarantee a trip to the playoffs. Can we do it? If you would have asked me this question a week ago I would have answered ‘I doubt it’. But after watching the gutsy display against the Vikings, I would answer “I think so”. At least we still have a pulse and as long as we’re breathing we appear to be willing to fight.
And that, my friends, is a major step in the right direction.

It’s a great time to be a Seahawks fan. Always has been, always will be.

Micky James writes weekly for Seahawks.NET. You can reach him at teamjames4@yahoo.com.

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