The Haters' Off-Season FAQ

Only four weeks remain until our Mighty Birds invade the majestic beauty that is Cheney, WA. If you haven't been, you must take the opportunity this year, as there are only two more Seahawks training camps within this lil' slice of heaven.

Think Las Vegas with a smattering of greenery, a lack of fiscal resources, 99% less traffic lights, and confused villagers. Sprinkle in a doughnut-shaped family tree or two and you’ll get the vivid vision.

However, even knowing Cheney’s warm embrace is a couple of fortnights away, my impatience isn’t dissipating. At this very moment, I’m more impatient than Rain Man boarding a Jet-Blue transcontinental flight (hitting my head saying “hot water burn Cheney…hot water burn Cheney”). I can’t stand it!

Adding to my irritability is the blatant ignorance of the Hawks, their players, or last year’s accomplishments by the national media. It’s as if we weren’t in the playoffs, didn’t win the NFC, and missed the Super Bowl. What is it going to take to wake them and everyone else up?

Well, being the helpful guy I am…I thought maybe a FAQ would help all NFL “experts”, media “members”, and general doubters. Hopefully, this will open their eyes to the dynasty about to be unleashed. Here are a few issues I’ve heard the detractors spew.

How can the Seahawks be considered serious contenders when Peter King already anointed the Dallas Cowboys victorious in SBXLI?

Ah, a tough and worthy question. I mean why would you doubt Peter on this one, really?

He’s going out on such a limb by smooching up—err—I mean proclaiming, the Cowboys as champs.

What other reasons could he possibly have for hoisting the NFL’s most marketable franchise, their newsworthy media-loving coach, the combustible WR they recently acquired, and egomaniacal owner up as the best? Hmmm, I bet it has all to do with research and little to do with gaining a foothold within the leagues top regular-season story line.

In fairness to Mr. King, Parcells is still the best coach going. They do have a good bordering on great defense, TO will be a definite impact, and Terry “She” Glenn seems to have defeated his bouts with migraines, thyroid disorders, and osteoporosis.

But one glaring weakness remains - their offensive backfield. Julius Jones is a good back, but considering he’s my body double, he won’t last a full season, sorry Pete. Drew Bledsoe’s not Drew Bledsoe anymore, Mr. King.

Lest we forget, Drew’s a man who made a Buffalo Bill offensive linemen berate him after a play, because he was sacked despite the minute and a half he had in the pocket. A feat unduplicated before or after that incident. He’s shot, done, gone, get out the forks.

To Parcells’ credit, he’s loaded up on every warm-blooded mammal over 280 pounds to compensate for Drew’s reactional-dysfunction. That was confirmed via satellite a few weeks ago. Only the Great Wall of China and Parcells’ base offense stand as man-made objects discernable from space. But even those four minutes aren’t enough for Drew to chuck the rock.

We shouldn’t be too hard on ole’ Petey on this one, though. It must be tough going from playing everyone’s favorite alcoholic, Norm on “Cheers”, to an NFL writer. Heck even Todd Bridges struggled with his fading stardom. But maybe you should stick to acting if you’re not going to research?

Besides, I bet John Ratzenberger’s itching to get back on network TV - maybe a spin-off’s in order?

If it’s not the Cowboys, surely it must be the Panthers that’ll represent the NFC?

Oh yes, the Kittens o’ Carolina. How could I forget the NASCAR Fan Base’s official team?

I’ll tell you how I forgot them. The last I saw of them, they were cowering in the corner of a shower, ala Elizabeth Shue in Leaving Las Vegas, after the public humiliation the Seahawks handed them.

Am I supposed to be frightened of the newly acquired and aging Keyshawn Johnson? Keyshawn wasn’t good before his 40-yard-dash time dropped from 7.8 to 10.5. Am I be intimidated by a man the sexy and talented Pork Chop Womack could cover man-to-man? The answer is no.

To their credit, the Panthers will always be good as long as Fox is around. And the addition of “Beverly” DeAngelo Williams is one that the rest of the NFC will regret soon enough, but not this year.

The Kittens will be a playoff team again next year. But they wont be good enough to earn the right of playing in Seattle come January, this time.

Seattle’s very thin in the Secondary. There’s even some grumbling they’ll be starting a rookie at CB?

Yes, even some of the Seahawks’ own fans are singing this tune. But they have an excuse for such ill-informed ignorance…the “media” does not. They and some fans are ignoring glaring facts.

First, it’s important to understand Tim Ruskell’s philosophy for building defenses from the inside out. So with that, the defensive backfield is as relevant as Dan Marino at a Super Bowl Champion roundtable discussion. That doesn’t mean it’s not valued, but just the least valued position defensively. It worked in Tampa Bay and worked last year for the Seahawks.

Second, let’s address this rookie CB everyone’s talking about, Kelly Jennings. We’re not talking about an average NFL rookie. We’re talking about a man who started four years at The “U” (that’s the University of Miami for you older readers). Nothing says “NFL-ready” like that. Need I remind everyone that C. Everett Koop, Jerry Falwell, and Rush Limbaugh all agree that the only thing safer than drafting a defensive player from The U is abstinence?

Mr. Jennings, just recently, was the toast of the Hawks’ mini-camp. His 13 tipped/batted balls defensively were among the most ever in a mini-camp. Making him not only the cat’s meow as it pertains to his teammates, but gained him love on the NFL Network's Total Access show from Adam Schefter.

Even with Mr. Jennings’ unlimited potential and swift learning, he won’t be the rookie making the biggest impact on defense this year. In fact, he won’t even be the rookie with the most impact on the defensive backfield - that honor will be given to Darryl Tapp, the DE rookie from Virginia Tech.

Adding Mr. Tapp to an already productive defensive front seven, will pay huge dividends for the defensive backfield. His lunch-pail attitude and relentless nature will wreak havoc for opposing QBs, limiting their already meager time to make a decision. If you want an idea of what to expect from that man Hokieville produced, envision the offspring of a Grant Wistrom and Chuck Darby courtship. Icky thought, but accurate nonetheless.

Lastly, all of us need to remember last year’s “thin” units for the Seahawks. It was the defensive line and linebacking corps. Those units also had a rookie added, who from all appearances also starred in TLC’s “Little People Big World” in one Lofa Tatupu. Last time I looked, Lofa was the REAL defensive player of the year, and the Seahawks lead the NFL in QB sacks.

The loss of Steve Hutchinson will be an insurmountable one, leading to poor offensive production.

Yes, the statement that deserves a dunce cap to be placed on whoever spit it. I’ve covered this question in a previous article, so I’ll save everyone my in-depth take, rather a few quick points.

I will remind all that the Seahawks were the best offensive line in the NFL on the field and the sidelines last year. They have more depth than a James Joyce novel.

Either the sexy and talented Pork Chop Womack, or newly acquired Tom Ashworth will replace Hutch. Each of whom have started extensively in the league. There’s going to be a minimal noticeable effect.

I’ve taken it upon myself to be a crusader for anti-Seahawks ignorance and complacency. I’ll be answering more FAQs as the media and fans bring them up.

Known very well to friend and foe as "pehawk" in our fan forums, Ryan Davis will be providing a fresh voice on the Seahawks, Seattle sports in general, and life in a nutshell. Feel free to send your thoughts, recriminations and mule sniffs to Ryan here. Top Stories