Chuck Knox was one of the more successful NFL coaches when it came to taking his teams to playoff games. He did it 11 times in 18 seasons. The bad news was that there were no Super Bowl appearances and his playoff record was 7-11.
All the same, Knox had a great career and had his teams essentially in the hunt wherever he went. He had two stints with the Los Angeles Rams, beginning and ending his career with that team. After his first Ram stint Knox went to Buffalo and from there arrived in Seattle for the 1983 season.
Knox took over the Seattle coaching reins from Mike McCormick. He had been named coach after the firing of Jack Patera, a former Oregon University and Baltimore Colt linebacker who assumed control in the Seahawks’ first season as an expansion team in 1976.
While Knox had garnered a reputation for a conservative running style offense in Los Angeles, which was given the name of “Ground Chuck”, he quickly adjusted to the available passing talent in 1983.
Dave Krieg received most of the reps at quarterback, but Jim Zorn also obtained his share, both displaying proficiency. They were aided by having the only primary Seattle player ever to make the Hall of Fame, Steve Largent, as a dangerous receiver. The running game was proficient with Penn State product Curt Warner enjoying a fine season.
Until the 2005 juggernaut, the Seahawks had never stood on the precipice of playing in the Super Bowl. The 1983 team finished second in the AFC West and reached the playoffs as a wild card entry. The hallmarks of the Seahawk season were two wins over the first place Los Angeles Raiders with the first, a 38-36 thriller, being one of the most memorable shootouts in Kingdome history.
By virtue of the team’s inferior overall record to the Raiders, the 9-7 regular season Seahawks were compelled to travel to Los Angeles for the AFC championship game, a 30-14 Raider victory. The Raiders then went on to defeat the defending champion Washington Redskins in the Super Bowl.