Qwest Field was as quiet this week as it has ever been this season, and that silence came over the crowd before the end of the first quarter. The Giants made sure to leave no doubt that they are the best team in the NFC by jumping to an early 21-0 lead in the first quarter and 35-0 by the half.
One thing about the Seahawks this year is that when they lose, they do so in spectacular fashion. In their four losses, they’ve compiled a 125-27 overall margin of defeat. This week, they achieved their worst home loss at Qwest, 41-7.
Just like last week, there weren’t a whole lot of highlights on the Seahawks side of the ball.
Instead, the highlight of the game was the show that took place before the game and at halftime as the team recognized active-duty military, reservists and veterans for Military Appreciation Day.
Master Sergeant Traci Williams, president of the military chapter of the Sea Hawkers, led the team onto the field carrying the American flag. During the pregame festivities, soldiers from Fort Lewis performed with the Blue Thunder, and another sang the National Anthem backed by the Military Sea Hawkers Honor Guard.
At halftime, past and present military members and their family were invited down on the field, and the line wrapped completely around the field. Fans in the stands were on their feet, and those within reach of the field shook hands and high-fived those in uniform as they came off. It was a very emotional tribute as folks in and out of uniform were clearly moved by the tremendous showing of appreciation.
Although the outcome of the game was disappointing, that memory will fade. But the experience for those who took part in the ceremony is one that certainly won’t be forgotten.
Following the 33-3 loss against the Raiders last week, Coach Pete Carroll said the team “accomplished nothing.” This week Carroll seemed to recognize the loss would bring a new sense of urgency going into the second half of the season. With Matt Hasselbeck, Russell Okung and Brandon Mebane likely returning to the field this week, Carroll hopes it will help give the team that boost.
Charlie Whitehurst had a great opportunity this week to come out and prove that he could be the Seahawks quarterback of the future. He was 12-of-23 for 113 yards, completed one touchdown to Ben Obomanu and threw two interceptions. I'm not sure when people started referring to Whitehurst as "clipboard Jesus," but it looks like he's going to continue wearing that moniker at least for the near future.
During Carroll’s Monday press conference, he was very supportive of Whitehurst and recognized the difficulty he faced in playing one of the league’s top defenses. As much as I'd like to give the guy the benefit of the doubt, it makes it more difficult on a weekend where we watched the Browns’ rookie Colt McCoy, a third-round pick, hammer the Patriots.
So this week’s loss brings the Seahawks even with the St. Louis Rams for the division lead. Next week, Seattle will take on the division rival Arizona Cardinals. Arizona had an opportunity to pull into a three-way tie for the lead but lost in overtime to the Vikings, 27-24, after being up 24-10 with less than five minutes to play. The Rams and 49ers had their bye week this week.
Although it was the second-most lopsided home loss in team history, it wasn't the worst loss of the weekend. We all owe the Dallas Cowboys a bit of gratitude as they were rolled up by the Packers, 45-7.
Just as Coach Carroll recognizes the team has a chance of going one of two ways in the second half of the season, I’m issuing a word of warning. One more home loss and I'm going to start rooting for my dream of a team with a losing record making the playoffs. In a way, I wouldn’t be terribly excited about the Seahawks fulfilling that dream, but on the other hand it would mean that they’d be in the playoffs, right?
I haven't wasted my time yet going through the scenarios to see if it would even be possible, but could you imagine if it came down to 6-9 Seattle and 7-8 St. Louis in the final game of the season to clinch the division? How great would it be to have a 7-9 team host a playoff game against a 10-6 or 9-7 team? Count me in. I’ll be there!
Brandan Schulze is a Navy veteran and member of the military chapter of the Sea Hawkers, the official booster club for the Seattle Seahawks. For more information on the chapter, visit www.militaryseahawkers.ning.com. Membership is free for all military service members and veterans.